Author: Kenny Williams Jr.

Success in the Inaugural Catalyst Grant Program

As we prepare to announce the 2019-2020 Catalyst Innovation Program recipients and change program coordinators, we want to take a moment to reflect on some of the highlights of Year #1, what we learned, and a bit about our hopes moving forward.

As we prepare to announce the 2019-2020 Catalyst Innovation Program recipients and change program coordinators, we want to take a moment to reflect on some of the highlights of Year #1, what we learned, and a bit about our hopes moving forward. The first year of the Catalyst program saw a wide variety of projects…

Questioning the Compliance Narrative

Could we begin to understand students as people who are interested in learning and growth for higher purposes beyond just compliance and grades?

I recently attended the 3rd annual Spring Conference on Student Learning and Success at MSU. The first year it ran, it was a joining of a couple of similar events across campus that previously had been taking place simultaneously. This year, there were more added to the party. Namely, what was previously a Student Success…

Can a university redesign itself? Yes – with your help.

“Why would any human being anywhere in the world come to East Lansing, Michigan (of all places), for their education and spend lots of money to do so?” We ask this a lot, because in order to serve the needs of students and create a culture of care, we have to regularly interrogate what we…

Learning, Exploring, Leveraging, and Living – A Semester of PD (part 1 of 2)

As someone with “fixer” like tendencies, the welcoming staff at Bluedog helped me see the value in pause. I’m not used to pause. I’ve always worked in places and for people who wanted more, faster, now, better. I still do - but I’m learning to approach these challenges differently.

I’m tired. In the best way. Since mid-February I have attended the Educause Learning Initiative (ELI) conference in Anaheim, an invited NSF work group on creating inclusive STEM studio learning environments, interned at an amazing design firm in Chicago for a week, and was the virtual engagement co-chair of the OLC Innovate conference. Whew! Here…

Episode 14 – My Spartan Story

Episode 14

Welcome to the first Hubcast of 2019! In this episode, Bill Heinrich, head of assessment and experiential learning for the Hub, talks about My Spartan Story, a new interactive web-based platform to track MSU student learning experiences outside of the classroom. He speaks with Leslie Thompson, an academic advisor in the College of Natural Science,…

Because Experiences Matter, Universities Are (should be) Design Organizations

Experiences can be good or bad, and given the ubiquity of communication, stories about those experiences are told nearly every second of every day

The “business,” if you will, of higher education is to provide learners with transformative experiences. Or it should be. This is perhaps a controversial statement. To be sure, there are a number of different and contrastive if not competitive ideas about what a university is and should be. Each has a long and specific history.…

Opportunities in Digital Learning: Considering emerging trends in Postsecondary Education

Black ceiling with light bulbs that are lit up

My prior two blog posts in this series on the Future of Digital Learning considered definitions and questions raised in our community this year. The writing thus far touches on opportunities present in these ideas about education and emerging potential in the digital era. This post will identify several in brief teases. Each of these…

Zaria Contejean – Science Gallery Mediator Profile

The role of the mediator was to really be that open line of communication between the art and the people that come into the museum,” - Zaria Contejean

In many museums, docents share knowledge about artwork or special exhibits with museum visitors. These docents receive training or are particular experts on certain movements or styles. For Science Gallery International, the docent role is transformed in several ways. First, the role is staffed by young people—the same people who are in Science Gallery’s target…

Ideas on Digital Learning: Reflections on our colleagues’ thoughts from the Future of Digital Learning Event

light blue corridor with white lines and black entrance at the end.

Earlier this semester, 134 faculty and staff from Michigan State University gathered at the Hub for six lightning talks from faculty representing the Colleges of Education, Music, Arts and Letters, Natural Science, and Communication Arts and Sciences. As participant, I enjoyed the faculty-focused, generative conversation about the future of digital learning at MSU. Dialogues like…

Manna Chowdhury – Science Gallery Mediator Profile

Quote from Manna Chowdhury: "Detroit is honestly one of the most diverse places that I've ever seen"

When Manna Chowdhury first became aware of the Detroit Science Gallery mediator position for the HUSTLE exhibit, it was because of a class she was enrolled in, while still in high school. After reading the mission statement and realizing that the mission of Science Gallery’s dedication to public engagement with science and art, by igniting…