OER Champion Awards

By | May 15, 2017

Open Oregon Educational Resources recognizes OER champions who have done outstanding open education work in Oregon’s community colleges. Congratulations champions!

Thank you Christina Trunnell, Treasure Valley Community College, and Josh Ogle, Rogue Community college, for volunteering to evaluate award nominations. 

Richenda Hawkins, Instructional Services/Reference Librarian, Linn-Benton Community College

Award category: Student savings, mentorship, and collaboration
Richenda was nominated twice! She has been instrumental in helping Linn-Benton Community College achieve $1 million dollars in student savings. She established a tracking system with the bookstore and almost singlehandedly has been responsible for tracking savings across the college. She started and chairs the Textbook Affordability Committee which is working to sustainably institutionalize low-cost and affordable textbook options. Richenda has been successful in bringing stakeholders such as the bookstore, students, administrators, instructors and library staff to work in a collaborative way. Through her willingness to mentor and share information with other librarians in Oregon, Richenda has been a leader in the movement to get libraries involved with providing affordable textbooks.

Portland Community College Math Team: Ralf Youtz, Emiliano Vega, Carly Vollet, & Alex Jordan

Award category: High-impact team
There were multiple nominations in PCC’s math department so a new category was created in order to recognize the work of this high-impact team.

Ralf and Emiliano are committed to the equity and social justice opportunities afforded by open education. In addition to using open practices in their own statistics classes, they lobbied to make the case to their colleagues in math. Emiliano and Ralf centered open education for math as a social justice issue, and convinced the math department to adopt an open text for all PCC face-to-face statistics courses. This is a major accomplishment, and PCC’s first department-wide adoption, which serves as an example of what is possible for other faculty. Through an Open Oregon Educational Resources grant, their pilot sections saved about 1,100 PCC statistics students an estimated $135,000 over the past four quarters. Students will save hundreds of thousands of dollars in the coming years, and will be free to focus their energy on learning and understanding statistical concepts and techniques.

Carly is leading a pilot project using OER in Portland Community College’s Calculus sequence. PCC has used the same (increasingly expensive) publisher calculus text for decades. Carly’s work is giving PCC faculty and students a chance to work with online/print OER material in this popular, crucial course sequence. She is moving forward at a careful pace, designed to engage PCC calculus instructors in a smooth transition to OER. This project is having impact this year, and will have even greater impact in years to come. Carly is truly an OER champion.

Alex’s work with MathBook XML (open software for producing accessible, interactive math content) is improving math and science OER quality nationally. At PCC, Alex is the editor and co-author of the Open Resources for Community College Algebra OER for MTH 60, MTH 65, and MTH 95. Alex has lent his technical skills to improving accessibility and quality of OER for the PCC calculus sequence. He’s also a member of the PCC OER Steering Committee and an Open Oregon Educational Resources grantee.

Lawrence LaJoie, Bookstore Manager, Linn-Benton Community College

Award category: Partnership with Bookstore
Lawrence has been a true partner in helping find affordable solutions for Linn-Benton Community College. He works hard to find the least expensive options from publishers. He shares information with the library about which faculty have adopted low-cost or open textbooks and provides data to inform the library’s cost analysis tracking. He is a member of the Textbook Affordability Committee and helps with decisions and policies that reduce the cost of textbooks for students. He has been an integral part of helping Linn-Benton Community College save $1 million dollars. He has been so successful in these efforts that he is now restructuring the bookstore to find new sources of revenue.

Kien Truong, Student, Portland Community College

Award category: Student activism
Kien is an outspoken student advocate for OER. Kien is Director of Student Programs for Associated Students of Portland Community College, Southeast. He also volunteers as Vice President of the Vietnamese Student Association and Vice President for Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, Southeast Campus Chapter. This year, Kien helped organize an inspiring OER event at SE Campus, including student-led discussions and awards for faculty using OER. Kien his fellow organizers also produced a video to help amplify PCC student voices in our community’s ongoing OER discussion. He developing a proposal to grant student dollars to faculty for OER work. Kien’s activism is having an impact at PCC and it’s an honor to recognize his incredible work.

Shannon Othus-Gault, Geology and General Science Instructor, Chemeketa Community College

Award category: Open Pedagogy
Shannon has created several OER resources for several different community colleges in Oregon, including Chemeketa. Her resources include a website containing a collection of virtual geology field trips in which she has traveled to many places around Oregon to document important geological locations, and a website containing OER readings and homework to replace textbooks in an Earth science class. She created an outstanding mineralogical database website showcasing student term projects, which is open pedagogy at its finest – students write the entries for the site. She deserves recognition for her hard work and contributions to open education in Oregon.

Kaela Parks, Director, Disability Services, Portland Community College

Award category: Equity/social justice
Kaela, PCC’s director of Disability Services, has been a consistently active and vocal advocate for open education at PCC as well as state-wide. She is committed to the opportunities afforded by open resources to serve ALL students, many of whom have been undeserved by commercial products. She is visionary, tireless, and optimistic and always centers our open education conversations around a better teaching and learning environment for students and faculty. Learn more about Kaela’s work through her post, The Intersection of Accessibility and Open Educational Resources, or her webinar with Lisa Brandt, OER Accessibility Training.

Ian Coronado, Interim Dean of Academic Technology, Lane Community College

Award category: Institutional impact
When it comes to supporting OER, Ian doesn’t just talk the talk. As the Interim Dean of Academic Technology at Lane Community College, Ian serves on the OER Steering Committee, supports faculty adoption of OER resources through an ongoing stipend initiative, and designates funds for the OER Librarian and OER Support positions. As a member of OCCDLA, Ian has been a vocal supporter of OER programs throughout Oregon. His vision and leadership have been instrumental to Lane’s progress with an institutional OER program.


2 thoughts on “OER Champion Awards

  1. Pingback: News: Mitsui lauds college math faculty for earning top honors from Open Oregon | PCC

  2. Pingback: Open Geology Website – openoregon.org

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