Breakout session Applications

Apply to Present a Breakout Session

Deadline for submission: Friday, SEPTEMBER 28, 2018

Breakout sessions at the Q Christian Conference are scheduled, volunteer-led events that include facilitated discussions, interactive group dialogues, and lecture-style presentations. These breakout sessions are a great way for attendees to engage in fellowship, participate in discussions, and learn about things that are most important to them. If you would like to lead a breakout, please carefully consider this year’s theme: Love Undivided.

As you complete the application below, please note that Love Undivided serves to initiate Q Christian’s movement toward non-dualism. For instance, rather than highlighting differences that separate our community members from one another (such as Side A versus Side B), Q Christian is working to embrace an integrated, side-by-side approach that respects everyone’s spiritual formation process. This includes: 1) practicing empathy for one another’s faith journey, 2) appreciating theological diversity, 3) finding common ground as God’s children, and 4) learning from one another’s perspectives. In this light, we are seeking applications for breakout sessions that inspire an undivided love, particularly as one wholly integrated Q Christian community. Please keep this important shift in Q Christian culture in mind as you prepare your outline and application.

Every year we are asked about reasons a submission may or may not be selected. To assist you in developing your proposal, please consider the following on what makes a great submission:

  • A clear, detailed outline explaining the basic content of the session and showing how the time will be used.
  • Built-in opportunities for audience interactivity and engagement, not just lecture. Breakout sessions are a time to teach and leave impressions on attendees so they can take what they’ve learned with them to their own communities.
  • A unique perspective on a topic of particular relevance to conference attendees. This may be a special take on a commonly discussed topic, or a unique topic altogether. 
  • Clear, practical, real-world takeaways people can apply to their lives. This can include specific steps to creating change, concrete ways to show support, and so much more.
  • A meaningful, spiritual, and/or emotional experience that attendees will look back on fondly.

Common reasons why a submission might not be selected:

  • Too many similar proposals surrounding the same topic. The Q Christian Conference is designed to offer unique information to people from diverse backgrounds, and submissions should reflect the diversity of this community.
  • The topic is unlikely to appeal to a large enough audience. While developing a unique proposal is crucial, it is also important to offer content that speaks to concerns, topics, and ideas that a significant number of people (even if just a minority of our attendees) have.
  • Content is likely to be highly controversial/divisive. Submissions that do not align with Q Christian Fellowship's mission and tone will also not be chosen.
  • Session outline is missing or too vague. A great proposal will offer a robust vision of the intended breakout session. 
  • Proposal seems unrealistic or poorly thought through. Make sure the proposed agenda reflects the allotted time, do not try to fit too much into the session (remember, you should include time for audience engagement), and do not keep the agenda so sparse that Q Christian does not know how you plan to realistically use your time.
  • It is unclear why the speaker(s) is/are qualified to present this particular material. Q Christian is committed to offering trustworthy content that can positively impact the lives of attendees. Choose topics that are related to your own personal, professional, and/or spiritual experience.
  • Proposal doesn’t fit into the specified category or doesn’t apply to the Q Christian audience. Proposals should very clearly describe their intended audience and how they are tailored to address the needs of specific groups of people and their experiences. 
  • Proposal lacks a clear way to engage the audience (humor, interactivity, small group discussion, etc.). Audience engagement is absolutely necessary in order to provide individuals with real-world takeaways that they can use in their own communities and lives. Make sure to include your specific tactic or strength for providing this component.

Successful breakouts will be empowering and transformative, allowing attendees to find their own voice in the conversation and discover how their voice can make a difference. This year’s sessions will explore how we are united through love–love through our faith, love in our community, and love for ourselves. Breakouts will be selected based on the following guidelines:

  • If your breakout session is approved, all presenters must register for the conference. Attendees expect presenters to be invested participants of the conference who are engaging in dialogue and community both in and out of the session room. Out of respect to other breakout session presenters and our conference attendees, all presenters are required to be registered attendees of the conference.
  • Breakouts must be consistent with Q Christian's mission, values, and statement of faith.
  • Breakout slots are either 60 or 90 minutes long. Out of respect for attendees’ time and attention span, it is important not to go over the limit of the slot you are assigned. While you are certainly able to end early, we encourage you to utilize as much of your time slot as possible.
  • Breakouts should be interactive. While you may include a lecture portion of your workshop, at least 30–45 minutes of your workshop should be dedicated to some form of audience participation: group discussion, role playing, practicing skills, asking and answering questions, brainstorming, sharing experiences, collaborative work, etc., either as a large group or broken into smaller groups.
  • Breakouts should be well researched, well organized, and well rehearsed. Please do not show up with a vague outline and the expectation to “wing it.” Participants will expect you to be professional, with strong, concrete knowledge of your topic and a clear, concise, and engaging presentation style.
  • Unless otherwise specified in your description, breakouts should be appropriate for both “Side A” and “Side B” audiences. The Q Christian Conference attendees come from both “Side A” (affirming of same-sex marriage) and “Side B” (supporting celibacy for gay Christians) perspectives. If your breakout takes a side or is only aimed at one of these audiences, it should clearly say so in the description. We do expect ALL breakouts, including those that take a side, to be respectful of our attendees on both sides.

Please note that all fields are required. We encourage you to complete this application on a computer and to ensure you have a copy of the information you enter below for your own preparation.