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Kelly Young
A conversation with Dr. Kelly Young of California State University Long Beach (CSULB) on mentorship.

I'm a Full Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at California State University Long Beach.  A CSU graduate from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, I trained at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health and the Oregon National Primate Research Center at the Oregon Health & Science University. My desire to teach in both the classroom and the laboratory made returning to the CSU system a priority, and I'm proud to be a Chancellor’s Doctoral Incentive Program recipient.  In my reproductive biology laboratory, my students and I examine the genes and proteins that regulate the gonadal transition between atrophy in the non-breeding season to fully functional in the breeding season. Most of the research in my laboratory has been conducted with CSULB undergraduates, and I focus on developing independent, productive, and confident undergraduate scientists who take the lead role in their research projects. My passion for engaging undergraduates in science extends into the pedagogical world, where my goal is to design and teach student-centered courses. I’ve been involved in several course-restructure projects to create more effective classroom environments where learning, grades, and motavation improve. I’m also thrilled to be working with fellow faculty members as we all work to better our teaching and mentoring techniques. In that vein, I developed a STEM-faculty learning community for the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics and a BUILD Mentoring Community at CSULB. My goal of enhancing student success and trying to make the world a more positive place drives me to work hard each day.

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Download Conversation #64

Keyana Scales
A conversation with Ms. Keyana Scales on enrollment management.

Keyana Scales is vice president for enrollment management at Xavier University of Louisiana. She is charged with strengthening the university’s enrollment through effective outreach strategies; overseeing the management of all aspects of the enrollment process; and ensuring that high ethical standards are maintained in admissions, recruitment, and financial aid policies and practices.

Ms. Scales has conducted presentations for national and regional associations within higher education. She attained both a BA in Communications and a M.Ed. in Counseling from North Carolina State University. She is a National Board Certified Counselor; an alumnus of the BRIDGES Academic Leadership for Women Program; a former member of the Southern Regional Council for The College Board; and a former executive board member of the Southern Association for College Admission Counseling.

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  • In terms of helpful links to faculty, here is an article that may be helpful for faculty with high school-aged students as they prepare for the college admissions process.  There is also quite a bit of literature that speaks to the trends related to increased anxiety levels students are currently presenting upon their arrival to college that may be helpful.  A recent article featured in the NY Times speaks to this issue.  There was also an article in Inside Higher Ed that talks about the increased number of students who present mental health challenges on college campuses.   Finally, with regard to how faculty can best support students, our approach at Xavier will largely mirror what is described in the EAB whitepaper that can be found here.

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Download Conversation #63


A conversation with Randy Stoecker of University of Wisconsin-Madison on liberating service learning.

Randy Stoecker is a Professor in the Department of Community and Environmental Sociology at the University of Wisconsin, with a joint appointment in the Center for Community and Economic Development. This position has taken him into expanded work in academy-community partnerships and community leadership development. He has been involved in work trying to amplify the community voice in service learning, and provide strong information technology support for nonprofit organizations, and build community power. Most recently, Dr. Stoecker and his students have worked with Community Shares of Wisconsin, SouthWest Madison Community Organizers, and The Natural Step Monona.

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Download Conversation #62


A conversation with Moustapha Diack of Southern University on open educational resources.

Professor Moustapha Diack is the Assistant Vice President for Online Services of the Southern University System as well as Chair of the Doctoral Program in Science/Mathematics Education (SMED) and interim Director of Online Learning and Professional Development for Southern University Baton Rouge. His research interests at Southern University are in the areas of Instructional Design, cognitive theory of multimedia learning and the strategic planning and deployment of online learning systems to enhance student learning outcomes. Dr. Diack has extensive experience in the areas of online learning design and delivery and has played a global leadership role in the areas of Open Education and Open Access. He was the recipient of the International MERLOT eLearning Innovation Award in 2009. He is a member of the MERLOT (Multimedia Educational Resources for Learning and Online Teaching) Faculty Development Editorial Board and Co-Founding Director of the MERLOT Africa Network (MAN), a network of African higher education institutions and digital scholars engaged in the research, development and implementation of open education. At the Southern University System, Dr. Diack oversees the development and implementation of integrated digital library services, the Southern University Online Library for Education (SUOL4ed), to facilitate quality online programs development and college affordability through the adoption of open education resources and open textbook. Dr. Diack is a member of the Louisiana Board of Regents Task Force On Electronic Learning and Past President 2003-2006 of the Louisiana Academy of Science.

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Many teachers have been using YouTube to share videos with their classes, and for good reason. YouTube offers a lot of conveniences that make it a very attractive platform for delivering video content.

However, most teachers with whom I've spoken do not want to be YouTube superstars. In fact, most of them don't want anyone watching their videos — except, of course, their students.

For this reason, I've recommended setting the privacy of such videos to "unlisted." An unlisted video is essentially invisible to anyone who doesn't have that gnarly and convoluted direct YouTube link. The only other options are "public" and "private," neither of which would seem to do the job — at least, not at first glance.

But there is another way, which may be better, at least sometimes. Let's take a second look at that "private" setting. A private video can normally be seen only by you.

[screenshot]

Click on that "share" button, though, and you open up a new dialog. Here you could enter individual email addresses to allow specific people to view. That's kind of a pain, but (now that Xavier is a Google campus) you also have the option to enable viewing by "everyone at xula.edu."

[screenshot]

You'll still have to share the link with your students, of course. Additionally, your students must be logged into YouTube using their xula.edu account. If they are logged in with a personal account, they won't be able to view the video.

In most cases, the "unlisted" setting is sufficient, perhaps even preferable. But if you are especially sensitive about who might view your video, this option is worth considering.

(As always, I urge teachers to consider doing the extra work to make your content fully and legally public.)

A tip of the hat to Asem Abdulahad of the Department of Chemistry for this pointer.

Meditation Room

The Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Faculty Development invites you to join us for a regular group meditation. We'll meet each Wednesday afternoon throughout the 2017-2018 academic year. Drop in when you can.

What to expect?

As the meditation room is located directly beneath the bell tower, we are using the bells in our meditation. They chime quarterly, so our period of silence begins at 12:30 and ends at 12:45.

But I've never done this before!

You needn't have any experience with meditating; just stop by and give it a try. There's no commitment and no pressure.

Why meditate?

Meditation has numerous well-documented benefits, including stress management, improved emotional balance, increased focus and awareness and increased responsiveness to student needs.

  • Date: August 23, 2017 - May 8, 2018 (when classes are in session)
  • Time: 12:30 - 12:45 PM
  • Location: Meditation Room, St. Katharine Drexel Chapel
  • Sponsor: CAT+FD

Photo credit: Bart Everson

Download Conversation #61


[headshot]
A conversation with Joan Middendorf of Indiana University on student learning bottlenecks.

Joan’s specialty lies in leading faculty groups to make disciplinary ways of thinking available to students. With David Pace she developed the “Decoding the Disciplines” approach to define crucial bottlenecks to learning, dissect and model expert thinking, and assess student performance. Joan and the History Learning Project (Pace and Professors Arlene Diaz and Leah Shopkow) were awarded the Menges Research Award from the Professional Development Network in Higher Education and the Maryellen Weimer Scholarly Work on Teaching and Learning Award.

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Download Conversation #60



A conversation with Joli Jensen of University of Tulsa on scholarly writing.

Throughout my academic career I have struggled to combine my academic writing with other commitments. What I’ve learned about overcoming obstacles to my own academic writing has led to my current focus — offering academic writing support to colleagues in the humanities, social sciences and sciences.

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XCIT 2017

We invite you to join the Xavier Contemplative Inquiry Team for the 2017-2018 school year. We meet monthly over the course of the year and provide support for each member’s personal practice, contemplative pedagogy, and related research. This year, we'll be adopting an explicit focus on STEM disciplines to examine some of the exciting scientific research in this area. The team is open to all faculty, staff and students.

Read more on our wiki, then download the call for participation and apply today.

CAT+FD is pleased to welcome Dr. Florastina Payton-Stewart for a three-year term as our new Faculty in Residence.

Payton-Stewart

Dr. Payton-Stewart is an Associate Professor in Chemistry, and is very passionate about teaching, mentoring and advising students. She has served as Associate Director for Center of Undergraduate Research and is a member of the American Chemical Society and the National Organization for the Advancement of Black Chemists and Chemical Engineers. She is a 2017 Keystone Fellow and recipient of the HERS Institute Leadership Academy STEM scholarship.

She will work with our new faculty, planning and implementing support throughout their first year.

In addition to supporting CAT+FD activities and initiatives, the CAT+FD Faculty in Residence has primary responsibility for enhancing and leading programming for first year faculty. Duties include: assisting in the planning and implementation of new faculty orientation; facilitating new faculty mentoring; organizing and implementing the new faculty "brown bag" series; organizing and implementing a coherent set of workshop open to all faculty but focused on new faculty; assisting in grant writing for CAT+FD initiatives related to first year faculty development; and assisting in the assessment of CAT+FD's programs related to first year faculty development.


We are also glad to announce that Mr. Jeremy Tuman is renewing his role as Faculty in Residence for Service Learning for a two-year term.