My current consulting is with Eastern International College, a student-centered and career-oriented institution of higher education dedicated to the professional development of its diverse student body. They have an innovative curriculum, leading-edge technology, and use experiential (“hands-on”) learning.
In summer 2018, they received full accreditation from the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) for an Associate’s Degree in Nursing (ADN) Program and the Commission on Dental on Dental Accreditation (CODA) granted a full approval to offer a three-year Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene (BSDH) program. With upgrades that summer to the Student Information System and the implementation of Canvas as their Learning Management System, I worked with their PAC for a January 2019 go-live launch.
In Fall 2018, EIC received approval from the State and ACCSC to implement the online Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene Degree (BSDH) Completion Program which was launched in January 2019.
Starting in August 2018, I began working as a Virtual Instructional Designer for the County College of Morris (NJ) to help build the online courses that launched their Virtual College in Fall 2019.
Though the college has offered online courses for many years, they are now moving to offer certificates and full degrees online to the county and beyond.
Working collaboratively with faculty, we designed courses that adhere to the Federal Regulation definition, be ADA and Section 508 accessible, and meet Quality Matters standards. The college is following the principles of Universal Design of Learning (UDL).
During 2017, I worked on the redesign of General Education courses to use Open Education Resources (OER) at Passaic County Community College as part of the final phase of a Title V grant program. The goal is to provide students with no cost beyond tuition. For example, there are no textbooks to purchase for these course sections.
By using Open Textbooks, OER resources and freely accessible course content, we designed to avoid “curriculum design by textbook” thinking. Faculty also created their own open resources and made them available on the OER Commons. More than 30 faculty were able to develop more than 40 distinct OER courses – and the project continues beyond my participation. View a 2018 presentation on this project
I returned to NJIT as the senior designer for the Online Professional Learning Exchange (OPLE) one-year grant. During 2014-2015, we worked with the NJ Dept. of Education and the New Jersey Principals & Supervisors Association to build online resources for training teachers, principals and supervisors in the state using professional learning communities. We participated in face-to-face professional development events to pilot, review, and refine the online resources while conducting research into quality improvement and usability.
This project continued with new funding in 2016 as the Collaborative for Leadership, Education, and Assessment Research (CLEAR), and working to create Future Ready Schools – New Jersey.
In 2016, I began transitioning into “unretirement” and started volunteer work with Montclair Film. Initially working on their annual film festival, the organization and my own participation have grown to include expanded activities including film and video production classes for young people and adults. Along with a 65-seat theater and educational area in a newly renovated building, they are now a year-round program.
I began the live Cinema + Conversation documentary film series in 2019 which has continued virtually during the pandemic in 2020.
I had the opportunity to work from 2012 through 2014 with social media which I had taught and been involved in using for marketing for a decade. I worked for the National Council of Teachers of English to create a social media strategy for their national organization, which has a large number of local affiliates. This included creating multiple social media accounts in networks, setting up posting calendars, creating content and monitoring NCTE’s broad presence online. Perhaps most importantly, we needed to create policies for social media use and responses to crises.
In those two years, we used Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, held national Tweetchats, did video presentations, covered the many conferences and conventions that come from the groups, recruited social media ambassadors from the membership, created an NCTE blog and newsletters for some affiliate groups, and began the process of a website redesign with an eye to using social channels on it.
The NCTE social media strategy project ended for me with my own recommendation that the role fulfilled virtually by myself and another virtual part-time staffer along with some hours each week by full-time NCTE staffers who had other responsibilities, should be done by a full-time social media manager based at NCTE’s national headquarters in Illinois.
From 2008 through 2012, I was the Director of the Writing Initiative that Passaic County Community College’s launched through a five-year, $2.5 million grant awarded by the Department of Education’s Title V Program. This grant aimed at increasing achievement and program completion rates of Hispanic and other students by integrating critical thinking and writing skills into the college general education curriculum via the redesign of 30 courses as writing-intensive.
The Writing Initiative at PCCC created courses that were supported by an intensive instructional development component that trained faculty in integrating critical thinking, technology, and information literacy into writing.
The grant was also used to construct a new Writing Center (opened in January 2009) within the Learning Resource Center where college-level students in the Writing Intensive courses received writing instruction and one-on-one help. With the end of the grant in October 2012, the Writing Center transitioned into being the college-level center for writing in all courses, although it still has a focus on continuing the WI courses started during the grant Initiative.
The program received the 2012 Diana Hacker Award for outstanding program from the National Council of Teachers of English and the Two Year College Association.
I had spent 25 years as a secondary school teacher of English and media before I moved to higher education in 2000 and worked in several roles at the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT).
I started at NJIT as the Manager of Instructional Technology. Besides working with many professors on courses and programs and moving learning online, there were several large projects that focused my attention for long periods of time.
Like many universities, we used and experimented with learning management systems (LMS). NJIT had initiated this in 2000 when I arrived on campus by introducing WebCT. I encouraged the use of open-source software during my tenure and we piloted several open-source LMS, and I began the transition of WebCT courses to Moodle as our open-source learning management system at NJIT in 2005. The university moved all of its courses to Moodle in 2009
In 2006, I started NJIT podcasting and in 2007 NJIT was asked to help launch Apple’s iTunes U. NJIT was one of the first group of 16 universities to be hosted in Apple’s iTunes store and offer free educational podcasts and materials.
I spent a year managing a K-20 collaborative initiative by NJIT to help introduce instructional technologies at Science Park High School, the school for gifted math and science students in Newark, NJ. I was “embedded” in the school and we brought Internet2 to the school, opened their wireless network, and set up a fabrication lab that was a makerspace before anyone really used the term.
After my five-year grant ended at PCCC, I returned to NJIT for the OPLE grant. From 2006 – 2017, I was an adjunct instructor at NJIT, Montclair State University and Passaic County Community College in the humanities department teaching courses in communications.