eLearning staff helping students, faculty
April 6, 2020
This week, Ashland Community and Technical College is continuing its employee spotlight series to highlight how faculty and staff are helping students while working remotely.
Despite the change in delivery method, ACTC’s employees are dedicated to providing the best support possible to its students.
Name: Sara Brown
City of Residence: South Shore, Ky.
Education: Marshall University, 2001 (B.A., English), University of Kentucky, 2003 (M.S., Library and Information Science), Morehead State University, 2014 (M.A., English), Doctoral Candidate at Marshall University, 2020 (Ed.D Leadership Studies).
Role(s) at ACTC and how you interact with students: I am the eLearning Activities Coordinator/Learning Specialist. I occasionally work with students to answer questions about technology access and Blackboard, but the majority of my work is to help faculty with course design and delivery in Blackboard.
How long have you been with ACTC? I started at ACTC in July 2004 (16 years).
What are your favorite things about working at ACTC? I love our community and our people. We are like a large family and everyone tries to help one another. I also feel like the work I do is supported and encouraged by my colleagues and supervisors which allows me to feel a measure of pride in what I accomplish for our institution.
Special accomplishments while working at ACTC? The Title III grant that we are currently in the fourth year of has been a major accomplishment. We have been able to redesign 13 general education courses and four technical program courses so far. We have redesigned five classrooms with more happening this year. These redesigned classrooms and courses provide students with more opportunities to learn in updated and engaging environments. It is a lot of work for our Title III area to make that successful, but it is also a lot of work for our faculty, our facilities team, our information technology team and our business office. That it has worked so well is a testament to how well the college pulls together to make these initiatives successful.
How would your co-workers describe you? I think most people would describe me as funny and laid back, but that I’m a worker and I get stuff done. I would also hope that they describe me as easy to work with, intelligent and helpful.
Who is your biggest role model and why: My grandmothers are my biggest role models because they lived through extraordinary times while being hardworking women who managed their lands, their families and they were quick to offer kindness and help whenever they were asked.
If the students I work with learn one thing, I hope it is… You can do this!
How are you assisting students during the pandemic and what should students know about your area of service during this time? I am creating troubleshooting guides, instructions for technology use/access and helping faculty use tools to put content in their courses. I make sure I share this information with everyone though because I know students contact different people for help and I want to make sure that they get the help they need when they ask. Our area is constantly reassessing what the needs are and making guides, videos, etc. to help.
Name: Megan Smedley
City of Residence: Olive Hill, Ky.
Education: Bachelor’s in Secondary English Education (2012); Master’s in Teacher Leadership (2017), both from Morehead State University.
Role(s) at ACTC and how you interact with students: eLearning Student Support Specialist — I provide tech support to students in our on-campus labs.
How long have you been with ACTC? Since October 2018
What are your favorite things about working at ACTC? I love everyone’s willingness to jump in and help one another. I know that if I am stumped with something, I can pick up the phone or send an email and someone will have the answer.
Special accomplishments while working at ACTC? Anytime we receive positive student feedback, it really validates the work we do.
How would your co-workers describe you? I hope they would describe me as a hardworking and dedicated employee. I also hope they see me as a good friend.
Who is your biggest role model and why? My biggest role model is my godmother. She retired from the Scioto County school system and was a guiding force throughout my college experience. She has always pushed me to be the best version of myself.
If the students I work with learn one thing, I hope it is… If they really put their mind to it, they can find success. I was a first-generation college grad. My parents were tobacco farmers, both with little to no education. As the oldest of six kids, my dad quit school in the sixth grade because he had to help on the farm. My mom quit school her senior year to marry my dad, because she was about to age out of the foster care system. They always pushed me to do my best, and really wanted me to have a better life. If I can do it, anyone can!
How are you assisting students during the pandemic and what should students know about your area of service during this time? eLearning Lab staff are currently working remotely and striving to offer the same level of tech support even though we are not in our physical lab space. Students needing assistance can email us directly, send us a message through our ACTC e-learning lab Facebook page or message us on Skype for Business.