by Sarah J.F. Braley | May 31, 2018
Participants arriving in Indianapolis this weekend for Meeting Professionals International's World Education Congress 2018 should expect to experience a totally redesigned convention. The new elements will start in the Indianapolis International Airport, where the MPI Welcome Lounge -- open Friday, June 1, from noon-8 p.m., and Saturday, June 2, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. -- will offer snacks and conference badges to attendees before directing them to complimentary shuttles into the city.
 
Using #EventCanvas illustration methodology to reimagine the show's offerings, as well as information from RFID beacons strategically placed around WEC 2017 in Las Vegas last June, MPI has devised a four-village layout for the Indiana Convention Center. The Innovation, Leadership, Experiential Design and Social villages each will offer customizable networking and business-exchange opportunities, including supplier showcases and food-and-beverage relevant to each theme. This video gives participants an idea of what's to come at the Indiana Convention Center.
 
More than 80 concurrent education sessions will be held in the villages, with the intent to offer a more intense live-learning experience. The offerings will be in 30-, 60- and 90-minute formats, covering everything from virtual reality, event design, F&B trends and ethical challenges to women's leadership, safety and security, and risk management.
 
"We are very proud of how successful WEC has been the past few years," said Darren Temple, COO of MPI, when the show floor's format was announced in March. "This year, we decided to take a page out of our own playbook and take a big risk by changing the overall look, feel and experience of WEC18. "
 
M&C will be reporting from #WEC18, which runs through June 5 and will feature events such as the opening-night reception at White River State Park, a tailgating lunch sponsored by the IMEX Group at Lucas Oil Stadium and the closing-night event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The U.S. Travel Association's president and CEO, Roger Dow, will be honored at the President's Dinner.