Teaching, Technology, Innovation Faculty Fellows

I sent out this email to all UMW Faculty earlier today.  I’m excited to see what kinds of ideas and programs develop when we embed a couple of UMW’s great faculty members in the Teaching, Technology, and Innovation unit.  It’s part of a number of changes happening over the next few months in the unit, and I hope to share more on those soon.

All,

During the 2015-2016 school year, the Teaching, Technology, and Innovation Unit is starting a new TTI Fellows program, building on the success of the Faculty Fellows Program in Academic and Career Services and the DSI Faculty Fellows program of the Center for Teaching Excellence and Innovation.  The two TTI Fellows will work closely throughout the 2015-2016 school year with CTE&I, the Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies, and the Special Assistant to the Provost for Teaching, Technology, and Innovation on issues related to digitally related faculty development and teaching excellence.

Specific responsibilities and work will vary depending on the background of the particular faculty member, but in this first year the unit is particularly interested in two areas of focus: 1) creating a broad-ranging set of approaches to help UMW faculty develop online or hybrid courses and 2) developing innovative and creative uses of technology in teaching, research, or service.  Both are core areas of interest for TTI more generally, and active intense collaboration with two faculty members will strengthen the work of the unit and the opportunities for faculty members at UMW.  The general expectation is that fellows will contribute several hours of work each week during the fall and spring semesters, participate in regular TTI staff meetings, work on a project related to the area of focus, and offer at least two faculty workshops over the course of the year.

The TTI Fellows program is open to any member of the full-time teaching faculty. Compensation will involve an $8000 stipend (payable over the academic year) and it is expected that the fellow will serve for the full academic year.

If you are interested in being considered to serve in such a role, please send a letter addressing your interest in working with either of the two main areas to me (jmcclurk@umw.edu) by July 1. Your letter should include specific ideas for projects and workshops you might offer in that area. A review committee made up of the Director of CTE&I, a representative from DTLT, & me will consider applications in the context of the needs of TTI.  Our goal would be for the Fellows to be in place by August 24.

Please let me know if you have any questions or would like to further discuss this opportunity.

Sincerely,

Jeff McClurken
Professor of History & American Studies
Special Assistant to the Provost for Teaching, Technology, and Innovation

An Amazing Life

The last few days have been very difficult for the UMW community.  It’s been a turbulent semester, but the news late last week that one of our students had been murdered in an event that remains tragic and largely unexplained has rocked our worlds.

I didn’t know Grace Mann well, but I knew of her from many people who I respect and trust, students, faculty, and staff.  I knew of her activism, I knew of her passionate defenses of others, I knew of her energy and enthusiasm, and I knew that I was glad that she had been appointed to serve on the President’s Task Force on Sexual Assault.  I knew that Grace, an American Studies major, had, even as a junior, already been involved at a high level in independent studies and presentations at scholarly conferences.  I knew that she had a reputation for engaging, challenging, and inspiring those who taught her.  I knew that I was looking forward to having her in my US Women’s History course in the fall (especially because I was going to have to bring my “A game” to keep up with her).

My heart aches for her parents and her family, for her fellow activists, for her friends, for her teachers, for her communities in Fredericksburg, Northern Virginia, and beyond.  I cried with so, so many of them today as we attended her funeral at Temple Rodef Shalom, and the grave-side burial at King David Memorial Gardens.  I won’t try to summarize the funeral (which can be seen here by clicking on the On-Demand Viewer on that page) beyond noting that the speakers–Cedric Rucker, Leah Cox, her roommates and best friends, and her amazing parents–depicted a life of light, passion, energy, deep friendship, inspiration, activism, and love–deep, giving, encompassing love–that defies simple categorization but included many, many hugs.  The sadness at her death and the inspiration of her life battled within me all day and I suspect within the many others around me.

It’s painful to imagine what we have all lost, what the world has lost, from her life being abruptly shortened in this way.  Given what Grace had already accomplished, the good she had already done, the people she had already inspired, we are poorer today to not have her among us.  Yet the incredible woman her parents brought up will continue to inspire all who knew her, and as long as her story continues to be told, she will inspire others as well.

Her parents have requested that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to RCASA, the Rappahannock Council Against Sexual Assault. Having watched RCASA provide essential support as far back as my own undergraduate days at Mary Washington in the early-1990s, I know it is a great organization doing incredibly important work and donations to it are a fitting tribute to much of Grace’s work on and off campus.  There will also be a memorial fund established at UMW in her honor.

There were many hugs today as we mourned our loss and celebrated Grace’s life.

Week 11

Comments aren’t required this week but if you have something to say about the readings, it will count towards class participation.

Posted in: Uncategorized |

Week 10

Week 10, really?  How did it get to be week 10.  Well, by now you certainly know what to do.

Posted in: Uncategorized |