State Divisions Receive Recognition and Support from NCDA

By Alicia Cheek and Ron Cathey

The NCDA State Division Leader's Handbook states the following:

Up to four state divisions are recognized each year for their unique contribution, exemplary activities and significant progress as an association. Criteria to be considered may include:

  • National Career Development Month Activities
  • Workshops and Conferences
  • Publications/Newsletters
  • Government Relations/Public Policy Efforts
  • Membership Development and Recognition
  • Public Relations
  • Publications/Newsletters/Website
  • Service to the Community
  • Other Services to Members

It is not necessary to have activities in all suggested areas. Quality, not quantity, of activities will be recognized. Therefore, small state groups have as much opportunity to receive earned recognition as groups with larger numbers or resources.

In 2015, both Colorado and Missouri have achieved recognition from NCDA as an outstanding state division. According to these two state division reports, they show the exemplary activities that all state career development associations may want to model.

Colorado Career Development Association (CCDA)
This established state division of over 200 members offered a total of seven events in 2014-15. These included their Fall Conference, three networking/training events throughout the state, a resume and job search assistance community outreach event, a Day of Service (new this year), and an additional networking/training event outside of the Denver metro area. Two of these events were in conjunction with National Career Development Month activities. CCDA will conclude the year by hosting an event at the NCDA Global Career Development Conference. Their Board of 17 members requires and achieves strong communication, succession planning and commitment. These positions include:

  • President
  • Past-President
  • President-Elect
  • Secretary
  • Secretary-Elect
  • Treasurer
  • Treasure-Elect
  • Membership & Scholarship Chair
  • Web Administrator
  • Graduate Student Liaison
  • Education Chair
  • Communications Co-Chairs
  • Events & Outreach Co-Chairs
  • Training Co-Chair: Speaker & Logistics Coordinator
  • Training Co-Chair: Registration Coordinator

The Board holds a summer retreat while also gathering at their annual events and the NCDA conference.

CCDA lists their biggest accomplishments/activities for the year in their annual report:

  • Our membership reached record high of 205! This is over the 160-180 typical of the past 4-5 years, so a large increase.
  • Our Fall conference had a record number of 131 attendees. According to the evaluations, it was also wildly successful with extremely positive feedback. We also tried a new format similar to TedTalks that was well received. We are continuing to be innovative to appeal to our members.
  • We have three members who are currently part of Leadership Academy (two for the 2014-2015 class and one for the 2015-2016 class).
  • Financially, we are very stable as an organization and fiscally had a good year, bringing in enough revenue from our Fall conference that we were able to provide many additional benefits, such as scholarships and networking events, while still being able to contribute to the long-term financial stability of our organization.
  • We have newly included a Day of Service, which we did in lieu of a Spring Training this year to encourage our members to go the NCDA conference this year, but which we plan to do in addition to the Spring Training in the future.
  • We are thrilled to be the host state for the NCDA conference, to have helped to facilitate, plan and staff the Career Center Tour, and to be hosting an event at the conference!

The biggest challenge CCDA faces is bringing in quality speakers for their events and completing nominations for NCDA awards. For more information about CCDA, view their website at www.coloradocareerdevelopment.org or contact Nena Davis (President 2014-15) sagecounseling@yahoo.com or Dan Macy (President 2015-16) Dan.Macy@rrcc.edu .

Missouri Career Development Association (MoCDA)
This relatively new state division (founded in 2010-11) consists of about 60 members. Their state report lists the benefits offered to members, including:

  • Fee reduction on professional development opportunities, some of which offer CEUs.
  • Workshops and education related to career development issues (including webinars and roundtable events)
  • MoCDA LinkedIn group
  • Information sharing via MoCDA e-newsletter
  • E-mail announcements and notifications
  • Postings of various career-related positions across the state.

In addition to promoting the annual NCDA Poetry & Poster Contest during November, National Career Development Month, MoCDA also hosted a webinar “LinkedIn: Beyond Networking” (presented by Carrie Collier) for 20 members. The webinar discussed innovative ways to use LinkedIn and even those very familiar with LinkedIn learned something new! On November 20, 2014 MoCDA hosted an in-person roundtable discussion at Saint Louis University. The group enjoyed a dynamic conversation regarding motivating the long-term unemployed. Other events throughout the year included a webinar on Motivational Interviewing, Roundtables, presentations at the American Counseling Association of Missouri Annual Conference and MoCDA Exposition Day, and a planned Professional Development workshop, “Finding Employment that Works for Individuals with Asperger's Syndrome” on July 9, 2015 with Barbara Bissonette.

MoCDA's biggest accomplishments this year include:

  • Launching a Volunteer Recognition Program in February 2015 to recognize committee members and leaders.
  • Formalizing the process for writing and following through on annual goals.
  • Reestablishing/strengthening their relationship with ACAM; establishing pattern of partnering on a professional development conference every other year.
  • Publishing a member directory to facilitate networking; posted on members-only section of website.

Like any state organization, MoCDA faces some challenges that they look to NCDA and other state associations for guidance:

  • Our webinar technology is reliant on our current leaders (using what’s provided through their employers). Is there the possibility of having NCDA-sponsored webinar technology?
  • Membership recruitment and retention strategies
  • Leadership orientation best practices.

For more information about MoDA, view their website at www.mo-cda.org or contact Marcie Schumert, President 2014-15, marciaschumert39@webster.edu, or Chandra Johnson, President 2015-16, cjohn169@slu.edu

Support from NCDA
As a chartered division of the national association, each state can benefit from the following support:

  • State Division Leader's Handbook – posted on the website, under About NCDA: State Divisions
  • State Leadership Training - During the annual NCDA Global Career Development Conference, a two-hour session provides an face-to-face introduction to NCDA leaders and detailed information about services
  • Related Conferences Calendar – list of events that states can contribute to
  • Career Convergence Reprint Permission – for use in state cda newsletters
  • Speaker's Bureau – found under Members-only section of the website
  • Best Practices – found under About NCDA: State Divisions
  • Mailing lists, door prizes, and national association materials available upon request
  • NBCC approved continuing education contact hours for state division events

NCDA looks forward to collaborating with all state career development associations. The business of building, managing, and sustaining a state organization takes a significant amount of time and effort but is worth it for all involved. State divisions are critical to the success of NCDA and deserve much support and recognition.



NCDA State Division Leader's Handbook. Retrieved from https://careerconvergence.org/aws/NCDA/pt/sp/about_divannouncements


Ron Cathey is the NCDA Board of Trustee responsible for supporting state divisions. He can be reached at rcathey@latech.edu

Alicia Cheek is the NCDA Communications Coordinator. She can be reached at acheek@ncda.org

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Deneen Pennington   on Tuesday 06/02/2015 at 09:15 AM

Congrats to both Colorado and Missouri CDAs! Your volunteer efforts are very commendable.

Jim Peacock   on Wednesday 06/03/2015 at 12:59 PM

Congratulations to both States.

As the outgoing President for Maine Career Development Association, please feel free to reach out to me if you have questions on what we are doing or want to discuss our struggles too.

We started just about 11 years ago and continue to grow. It certainly looks like you are doing great things!

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the comments shown above are those of the individual comment authors and do not reflect the views or opinions of this organization.