About  |  Great Denver Design Off  |  Escape Room   |   Schedule  |  About the Designers



Why Innovation Studio? 

Innovation for teaching and learning is born through our collaborations and interconnectedness as educators. In this spirit, the Innovation Studio is a dedicated space at the conference for you to explore the pervasive challenges we face in the classroom and to craft innovative approaches for better reaching our unique populations of learners.


What is the Innovation Studio?

OLC Innovate is not a passive conference experience! Join the designers in the Innovation Studio for a series of live experimental sessions, design thinking challenges, the sharing of trade secrets, and more! This year, the innovation studio hosts a series of studio stations exploring the design thinking process, considering issues of diversity and access in designs, resident expert designers showcasing their work, and a conference retreat and reflection space for making sense and meaning of all of your wonderful learnings from the space and conference overall. Make the Innovation Studio your hub and your home base at OLC Innovate 2019, using it as a space to be inspired, network with colleagues, and reflect throughout the conference.


Welcome to “THE GREAT DENVER DESIGN OFF” or  #GDDO – A Series of Sessions that Bring Participants Together to Collaborate on Design “Technical” Challenges

Limitations or barriers can lead to innovative ideas. In the Innovation Studio, we want to explore how this works in a collaborative conference environment. Join us for “The Great Denver Design Off”, a series of design challenge sessions, where we will take from the structure of the Great British Bake Off’s “technical bake”, but instead give design challenges that have a common set of limitations and learning goals. Participants will collaborate to generate creative solutions and suggestions for incorporating technology into their teaching practices.
Check out the Innovation Studio schedule below for the schedule of #GDDO rounds (all during the networking coffee breaks), and make plans to join in the fun. If you’re looking for a great way to network while creating solutions for others, plan to participate. You might even pick up a prize for your ideation and collaboration skills! Sign up to reserve your spot in the Great Denver Design Off!



Join others in completing the OLC Innovate Escape Room (#OLCEscapeRoom) – a fun challenge and puzzle-based experience that unites participants around collaboration and strategy

New to the Innovation Studio this year is an EdTech themed Escape Room!

Escape Rooms are collaborative experiences where participants work together to solve a series of puzzles, challenges, riddles, or mysteries using clues, hints, and intentional strategy. They often feature a specific theme and a particular set of objectives that require participants to work as a team if they hope to complete the challenge in time. 

In the spirit of the Innovation Studio, the OLC Innovate Escape Room will allow conference participants a fun and unique space to not only engage with a variety of educational technologies, but do so in a themed, challenge-based environment with others. Challenges might include finding a hidden code within a database to unlock a presentation, navigating through a virtual or augmented reality to receive your next clue, using distance-learning technologies to communicate with your teammates, or completing a circuit to turn on a device, among others. That said, they will all be fun, practical, and representative of the types of teaching and learning challenges that educators face in their day-to-day lives.  

To hear from others who have participated in OLC Escape Room challenges before, visit the OLC Escape Room Testimonials flipgrid page.

Each member of the winning team (max 10 members per team) will receive a $25 OLC gift card and some fun OLC swag!

We invite you to join in the Escape Room fun on Friday morning in Juniper C. Sign up to reserve your spot in this new experience


Connect with Us

Want to learn more about the Innovation Studio and how you can get involved? Connect with us on social media with the hashtag #OLCInnovationStudio or join our channel in the OLC Slack Team https://olcinnovate.slack.com/. We’re excited to start the conversation, and looking forward to innovating with you in person in Denver.



Innovation Studio Sessions

10:00am - 10:30am Networking Break Great Denver Design Off
10:30am - 12:00pm Teaching With Care: Creating Inclusive Course Documents Kate Sonka (Michigan State University)
Jeremy Van Hof (Michigan State University)
Adam Nemeroff (Dartmouth College)
1:00pm - 1:45pm Designing Culturally Relevant OER For Online Learning Chris Luchs (CCCOnline)
Bridgitt Mitchell (Colorado Community Colleges Online)
Kae Novak (Front Range Community College)
2:00pm - 2:45pm Using Game Design Principles To Create Authentic Learning Experiences Andrew Feldstein (Fort Hays State University)
Gulinna A (Fort Hays State University)
2:45pm - 3:30pm Networking Break Great Denver Design Off
3:30pm - 4:15pm Annotation Within And Beyond The Classroom Jeremy Dean (Hypothesis)
Sundi Richard (Davidson College)
8:45am - 9:30am Clustering Code Submissions For Scalable And Social Feedback David Joyner (Georgia Institute of Technology-Main Campus)
9:45am - 10:30am Leveraging Active Learning To Enhance Online Or Blended Learning Environments Ashley Salter (University of Central Florida)
Alyssa Albrecht (University of Central Florida)
Jessica Tojo (University of Central Florida)
10:30am - 11:15am Networking Break Great Denver Design Off
11:15am - 12:00pm How Audio Posters Can Be Used As Unique Engagement Spaces At Conferences Daniel Lynds (Davidson College)
1:15pm - 2:00pm Integrating Digital Simulations Into Science Courses Jacqui Hayes (Smart Sparrow)
Kathy Perkins (PhET Interactive Simulations - University of Colorado Boulder)
2:15pm - 3:00pm Instructional Design, The Card Game Qin Li (University of Utah)
Jonathan Thomas (University of Utah)
3:00pm - 3:30pm Final Networking Break Final round of Great Denver Design Off




About the Studio Designers

Luke Bennett

Luke Bennett, Clemson University

Luke is a Lecturer at Clemson University’s College of Education. He has been teaching fully online and blended for the last decade and has a strong background in course development and online education.  Along with his teaching role, he enjoys helping those who work in the online/blended space reach their full potential as educators. His research areas include management and pedagogy within emerging learning spaces. He is driven to make the online, blended, and f2f spaces settings where teaching and learning is maximized for both instructor and student. In his spare time, you will find Luke hanging out with his family, running, cycling, or playing the guitar.


Tayla Drescher

Talya Drescher, California State University, Channel Islands 

Dr. Talya Drescher is an Assistant Professor of Special Education at California State University, Channel Islands.  She has over a decade of experience as a K-12 special educator in Los Angeles area public schools and a decade devoted to teaching future special education teachers in pre-service programs.  Her areas of research include co-teaching in pre-service programs and the use of mixed reality simulation in post-secondary education.


Daniel Lynds

Daniel Lynds, Davidson College

Daniel Lynds is an Instructional Designer with a Bachelor of Fine Art and a Masters in Education Technology. Daniel collaborates with people on making their work as impactful and open as possible. His work centers around digital storytelling, social network analysis, open education, and cultural theory. As an editor at Hybrid Pedagogy, a critical journal/community/conversation/study, Daniel finds himself constantly engaged with scholarship from international voices focused on the connectedness of learning, teaching, and technology in culture. This work feeds his interests in collaboratively building sense making in the humanities and beyond. He believes in people and their ability to critically examine their paths in the ever complex landscape of knowledge abundance. Daniel is also an interdisciplinary artist and general noise maker. Many of his creations can be found at daniellynds.com.

Adam Nemeroff

Adam Nemeroff, Dartmouth College – Co-lead

Adam works as a Learning Designer at Dartmouth College. He works across a variety of innovative projects with faculty and campus partners in the areas of educational technologies, course redesigns, experiential learning projects, and issues of accessibility and inclusivity in the classroom. Adam is a co-host of Teach with Care (also on your podcast app of choice), a collaborative podcast on issues of inclusivity in teaching and learning.

Kristi O'Neil-Gonzalez

Kristi O’Neil-Gonzalez, CSU Channel Islands

Kristi is the Instructional Technologist- Accessibility Lead and FIT Studio Coordinator on the Teaching & Learning Innovations team at California State University, Channel Islands. She has worked in higher education for the past 7 years and in addition to campus responsibilities, she earned her M.A. in Learning Technologies at Pepperdine University.

She is a passionate advocate of accessibility and Universal Design for Learning (UDL) to meet the needs of a diverse campus community.  Her local efforts include supporting and guiding faculty as they explore teaching and learning with and through technology, including the development of a week-long facilitated “workout” around accessibility. The 5 Day Accessibility Workout is available in Canvas Commons and includes a digital badge. To engage and contribute to a broader community, Kristi actively participates in and presents at Accessing Higher Ground (AHG), CSUN Assistive Technology Conferences, and OLC Innovate.

Sundi Richard

Sundi Richard, Davidson College, Co-Lead

Sundi works to create an innovative and supportive environment to promote student and faculty digital dexterity and advance thoughtful integration of technologies in teaching, learning, and scholarship at Davidson College. Interested in empowering students to be active citizens in their online and offline worlds, Sundi explores digital identity, networking, and online interaction. She is part of an ongoing conversation in higher education about digital citizenship #digciz.

Maddie Shellgren

Madeline (Maddie) Shellgren, Michigan State, Escape Room Lead

Maddie the one with the batman and dinosaur tattoos. Starting this year as a second-year PhD student in Writing, Rhetoric, and American Cultures, Maddie spent the last six years at Michigan State as a PhD student in Linguistics. She devotes a lot of time to thinking about professional identities within higher education, inclusion, equity, and accessibility, language and identity, pedagogy, educational technology, and a bunch of other things. Though her work takes her across multiple units and spaces on campus, she currently (and primarily) serves as a Program Director for the Graduate School supporting Teaching Assistant Professional Development. That said, Maddie also spends a lot of time trying to figure out which local stores sell the best donuts (extensive research and data collection still underway) and which parks provide the best dog-walking experiences. When not teaching, being a grad student, or working for either the College of Arts and Letters, the Graduate School, or the Hub for Innovation in Learning and Technology, you can find her working as a Simulated Patient for the College of Human Medicine, deeply engaged in DIY home renovations, or eating cannoli at Roma Bakery.

Makena Schultz

Makena Schultz, Michigan State

Makena is a Ph.D. Candidate in Michigan State University’s Higher, Adult, and Lifelong Education Program. In fact, Makena is a Spartan-lifer. She moved to East Lansing in 2008 to be an undergraduate in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and continued on to finish her Masters of Science in the same college. After her M.S., Makena left the mitten-state for the west coast to work in consumer-market research at a winery in Napa Valley. Despite a love for wine-country, the Great Lakes called Makena home, and she started her career as a state-wide youth Leadership and Civic Engagement Educator with MSU Extension where she started MSUE’s Photovoice project and facilitator training program. Across all her education and work experiences, a passion for learning and community have been a constant for Makena – leading her to her current doctoral work and engagement at OLC Innovate!

Daniel Trego

Daniel Trego, Michigan State University

Daniel is an Educational Media Design Specialist at Michigan State University. His areas of expertise are in video and audio production and web design. His background is originally in Applied Hispanic Linguistics and it was his work in curriculum design and Spanish instruction that eventually brought him to full time work in Educational Technology. He works with faculty to design effective media for teaching and learning and is passionate about storytelling and helping others create and cultivate their digital presence. Currently, he is working with Apple to help lead one of the first university iOS design lab programs in the country. His teaching and mentoring within the program is focused on the intersection of design thinking and Swift programing.