Wednesday, July 7, 2021 News

Congratulations to the Open Education Leadership Program Class of 2021

Open Education

SPARC is thrilled to congratulate the fourth cohort of the Open Education Leadership Program on completing the program! Our 2021 graduating class includes 20 academic professionals from across the United States and Canada, officially bringing the program’s total graduate count to 84.

This year’s cohort was the first to welcome all academic professionals in higher education with responsibilities related to open education, broadening the program’s original focus on academic librarians. The 2020-2021 cohort included the perspectives of instructional designers, policy analysts, project managers, student leaders, and more. The addition of these new dimensions did wonders to enrich cohort discussions and build a strong network of open education practitioners. 

The 2020-2021 cohort began their journey during the coronavirus pandemic in September 2020. During the fall, they completed an online course designed to build subject matter mastery on open education and formulate a roadmap for a capstone project. The cohort also attended the first ever virtual iteration of the Open Education Conference on November 9-13, 2020. 

The spring semester of the program was devoted to the fellow’s development of their individual capstone projects, with assistance from their designated mentor. Emerging themes from the cohort’s capstone projects included fostering student advocacy, conducting institutional needs assessments, workshops and toolkits to equip faculty with the tools they need to adopt OER, open pedagogy project planning, and many others. We are pleased to share a list of their capstone projects in the form of a slideshow presentation below. 

While this was the first cohort in the program’s four year history that didn’t have the chance to meet in-person, it was an absolute pleasure to watch fellows and mentors develop bonds in their own, unique way. We are so proud of the resilience, determination, and leadership that carried our fellows through an unprecedented year. We know that they will continue to do great things and can’t wait to see where they go next!



2020-2021 SPARC Open Education Leadership Fellows
Adam Mazel, Union College
Angela Chikowero, University of California, Santa Barbara
Brad Ost, Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center, Inc.
Bryan McGeary, Pennsylvania State University
Christina Riehman-Murphy, Penn State Libraries, Abington College
Claire Nickerson, Fort Hays State University
Connie Strittmatter, Fitchburg State University
David Tully, North Carolina State University Libraries
Donna Langille, University of British Columbia Okanagan
James (Jim) Paradiso, University of Central Florida
Kristina De Voe, Temple University
Lee Miller, Director of Innovation and Compliance, Barton Community College
Liliana Diaz Solodukhin, Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE)
Mélanie Brunet, University of Ottawa
Nicole Arnold, University of California, Irvine
Shannon Smith, Utah State University
Sophie Rondeau, Virtual Library of Virginia (VIVA)/George Mason University
Stefanie Buck, Oregon State University
Tiffany MacLennan, The Maple League of Universities
Ursula Pike, Digital Higher Education Consortium of Texas (DigiTex)

2020-2021 SPARC Open Education Leadership Mentors
Abbey Elder, Iowa State University
Amanda Larson, The Ohio State University
Ariana Santiago, University of Houston
Chris Barnes, Franklin & Marshall College
Dawn (Nikki) Cannon-Rech, Georgia Southern University
Hailey Babb, SPARC
Helen McManus, George Mason University
Hillary Miller, Virginia Commonwealth University
Jeanne Hoover, East Carolina University
Jeff Gallant, Affordable Learning Georgia
Jennifer Beamer, The Claremont Colleges
Jillian Maynard, Central Connecticut State University
Katie Steen, SPARC
Kellam Ayres, Middlebury College
Kevin Corcoran, Connecticut State Colleges & Universities
Michelle Brailey, University of Alberta
Michelle Reed, University of Texas at Arlington
Stephanie Pierce, University of Arkansas
Stephanie Quail, York University
Tanya Spilovoy, WICHE

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