2016 College Councils Conference

September 30 - October 2, 2016
New Haven, Conn.

Held annually since 1966, the College Councils Conference brings college Knights together from across the country and around the world. in 2016, Major General Michael Regner, USMC (Ret.) addressed college Knights from nearly 80 campuses.


College Knights Come to New Haven

‘I Am Surrounded by Strong Catholics’

2015-2016 College Council Award Winners

2016 Advisory Board



Breakout Sessions

Growing Council Membership: More than a Number

Constantly growing our councils and inviting men to join us is necessary to continue our council’s success on campus. More important than meeting a quota, however, recruitment is an opportunity to offer a man entry into a lifelong organization that will help him become the best version of himself. As leaders in our college councils, we know the value of membership and it’s now our job to communicate this opportunity to every eligible man on our campus.

In this session we will break down the recruiting process and discuss best practices noting different approaches based on campus size, type and location.  In addition to discussing recruiting events and drives, we will talk about how all events can be visible opportunities to recruit. We will also discuss how to keep members engaged once they join.  Finally, we will examine practices to re-engage members who have become inactive for a semester or longer.

Planning for Success: Running Effective Council Programming

Council programming is an important part of running a council. Successful programming can be achieved through proper planning and organization. Planning requires that the council leadership spend time before the semester begins to set calendars, divide responsibilities, and set checkpoints to ensure progress. Organization requires the grand knight to utilize his program director and committee chairmen effectively to ensure a balance of program types.

This session will discuss best practices for planning and running events, including specific examples of proven college council events that your council can run. Additionally, this session will discuss ways to design events for the entire campus community to participate and how your council can effectively communicate and promote these events. Finally, this session will discuss the Columbian Award and its requirements and how your council can prepare a balanced programming approach and set its sights on achieving the Star Council Award.

Growing Council Leadership: Developing Leaders for Life

Leadership plays a pivotal role in all organizations. As college Knights, we are all campus leaders in faith, service and fraternity. By being men for others, we spread the ideals of Catholicism and do our best to bring faith to others. In a unique way, one of our challenges as members of college councils is how to continually form ourselves as leaders while also preparing underclassmen to lead after us. Additionally, we should be able to take our leadership experience beyond our graduation and into our professional careers and future endeavors as Knights of Columbus leaders.

This session will focus on promoting leadership qualities among brother Knights and establishing council best practices for promoting formal and informal council leadership training programs. Additionally, we will discuss the various officer positions and what leadership skills and practices can help prepare brother Knights for these roles.  Finally, we will discuss how the leadership skills we develop as council leaders can be applied after college to our careers and future as Knights of Columbus leaders.

Sustaining your Council's Mission: Best Practices in Council Management

Managing a college council can be a daunting task. In addition to obligations such as extracurricular activities, schoolwork, a campus job, and personal commitments, college Knights have to find time to organize for council meetings, balance the council account and prepare for future challenges. In order to maximize the effectiveness of council officers’ time, it’s important to develop council best practices for organization, transition, events, meetings, finances, and others.

In this session, we will discuss proven best practices for college councils. By adapting these established best practices to your council and adhering to standard operating procedures, your council will ensure sustained success. This session will cover best practices related to council organization and institutional memory, transitioning graduates’ membership after college, running effective events and meetings, and properly managing council finances.

Spiritual Development: Building Catholic Men on Campus

The secular culture of our college campuses creates one of the hardest environments to maintain our Catholic faith.  As young men, we especially feel the pressures to submit to spiritual mediocrity.  Seeking refuge, men should be able to turn to their Knights of Columbus College council. To provide this, however, it is important for the college council to support an environment with opportunities to grow in their faith.  This talk will focus on spiritual growth in three areas: Building Yourself, Building Your Council, and Building Your Campus.  

This session will discuss a practical approach to obtaining these three goals.  Because it is important for a man desiring to build others in the faith to first strengthen himself, we will discuss opportunities for increasing personal faith including daily devotions, and scripture reading. Next we will offer suggestions to address the challenge of engaging the council membership in regular spiritual practices — from council events that follow the liturgical year to advice on holding council retreats and regular faith gatherings, such as Bible studies. Finally, we will discuss opportunities for reaching out to the men on your campuses to challenge them to engage in their faith.

Reimbursement Procedure

The Supreme Council will provide travel stipends for two students, a chaplain/priest, and the financial secretary from each council. Travel stipends are based on distance from New Haven and information regarding the amount for your council will be communicated to your Grand Knight. In addition to providing a travel stipend for the above individuals, the Supreme Council will arrange lodging and meals for these attendees.

Councils may send an additional five students at the council or individual’s expense. There will be a $200 conference fee for all additional attendees to cover lodging and meals.