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Frequently Asked Questions

EAST Conference 2024 will be held from March 12-14 at the Hot Springs Convention Center. In-person Conference attendance is REQUIRED for all active EAST programs involved at the full level of support!

For planning purposes, check out the EAST Conference Planning Checklist. We designed this to help make Conference planning easier for you - make a copy of this document and update it for your program. Additional resources for Conference can be found in the Conference folder in the Facilitator Toolkit, including budget templates, Conference Team application samples and more.

ADA Accessibility

  • Is this event ADA accessible?

    EAST values inclusion and access for all participants and is pleased to provide reasonable accommodations for this event. Please contact to make a reasonable accommodation request. Requests must be submitted at least 14 days prior to the event.

  • Are there any special service animal guidelines?

    Service animals must wear identifying apparel to enter the Hot Springs Convention Center.

Conference Competitions

  • Why are the competition finalists announced so late?

    Competitions are designed to recognize the individual elements of your team's overall project. For this reason, we (somewhat) intentionally delay the competition announcements because we don't want EAST programs to build their projects around the competitions.

  • When will the competition winners be announced?

    Competitions winners will be announced during Closing Session.

Dress Guidelines

  • What is the dress code for attendees?

    Click here to view this year’s EAST Conference Dress Code.

Luggage Storage

  • Is there anywhere to store luggage after we check out of our hotel on Thursday morning?

    Luggage storage will be available for free in a monitored area near registration. The exact location will be indicated on the map on the back of your event name badge.

Merchandise and Souvenirs

  • Can I exchange my EAST Conference t-shirt or purchase an extra one?

    Yes! Participants will have a chance to exchange their official EAST Conference t-shirts and purchase remaining shirts.

On-site Food and Drinks

  • My team is planning to order lunch from the on-site concession stand at Conference. Is there a menu we can look at?

    There is! Click here to view the Concession Stand Menu.


Registration Deadlines

  • What deadlines do I need to be aware of?

    Here are some key deadlines and other dates to keep in mind:

    • January 31, 2024
      • Last day to register your program without incurring a $25 Late Registration Fee
    • February 29, 2024
      • Last day to add or drop participants to or from your roster
    • March 6, 2024
      • Program Team payments due
      • Deadline to submit Guest Lists
      • Advance registration closes to the public
    • March 8, 2024
      • Programs with unpaid registrations will be dropped and required to re-register on-site.

Safety First

  • What can we do to ensure that our belongings are secure during Conference?

    Security guards will be onsite to monitor the Exhibit Hall and other areas in the Convention Center. However, EAST is not responsible for the loss of, or damage to, any valuables or other items during Conference. Click here for more information.

  • How can I help make this a safe (and fun) experience for my program?

    Here are some event security tips from EAST staff:

    • Name tags must be worn by everyone at all times (IDs required for some).
    • Practice the buddy system when traveling from location to location.
    • Have a “rally point” to reconnect with your team if you get lost.
    • Separated from your group? Head to the Registration Booth
  • Speaking of security, are there bag size guidelines for Opening and Closing Ceremony?

    Bags larger than 14” x 14” x 6” are not permitted at the EAST Conference Opening or Closing Sessions. Bags may not be left unattended. No weapons are allowed!

To bring or not to bring?

  • Can we bring coolers?

    Typically, the convention center does not allow coolers or outside food/drink to be brought into the building. However, they do make exceptions for our group to make EAST Conference a more affordable experience for schools. So yes, you can bring in a cooler for lunch, but we encourage you to store it in the booth (maybe under a table). Note that coolers must be removed from the Exhibit Hall while your team is eating, as food is typically not allowed in that space.


  • Media Release Statement

    By participating in this event, you agree and consent that EAST or its employees or agents may film, tape, record, and photograph you during and in connection with your appearance at or involvement with this event, and EAST shall be the exclusive owner of all of the proceeds and results of such filming, taping, recording, and photographing and any related derivative works with the right for EAST or its agents or assignees to use in any reasonable manner, throughout the world, in any format or medium now known or later developed, for an unlimited number of times in perpetuity, royalty-free, all or any portion of your name, appearance, voice and image. By participating in this event or activity, you understand that your name, appearance, voice, and image or any derivative works may be available for viewing by the general public, and may appear on EAST’s website, in print, or in other formats and mediums.

  • Care of Premise

    Damage to the exhibit space, Convention Center, related premises, booth equipment or furnishings (collectively the 'Premises') caused by any exhibitor is the full responsibility of the exhibitor. The exhibitor will be billed for any damage repair costs. In addition, no signs, exhibit parts or other materials may be pasted, nailed, hot glued or otherwise affixed to walls, doors or other surfaces in a way that could mar or deface the Premises. Any damage from failure to observe this requirement is payable by the exhibitor as well.