OLC Leadership Network Event

Pre-Conference Workshop Session 2

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Brief Abstract

Institutional leaders are challenged with making decisions in an increasingly complex and changing higher education landscape. From evolving federal policies and regulations governing online education to the development of partnerships with private and public entities. Many of these are impacted by an institutions ability to make data informed decisions and to report on accountability measures. This Leadership Network event brings together experienced higher ed leaders to discuss these important and changing issues through guided discussions.

There is a fee for this Pre-Conference Workshop: $225 Early Bird / $250 Full Price. Select both an AM and a PM pre-conference workshop to receive special combo package pricing of $395 Early Bird / $445 Full Price (total savings of $55).

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Jennifer is responsible for the development of OLC's long-range goals, strategies, plans and policies. She also provides leadership in researching and planning strategic initiatives, special projects and partnerships that align with OLC's mission, vision and goals. Dr. Mathes has nearly 20 years of experience in both public and private higher education where she has served as a faculty member and an academic leader. She holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where she wrote her dissertation on “Predictors for Student Success in Online Education.” She also has earned a Master of Science degree in Business Education and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications from Illinois State University.
Thomas Cavanagh, Ph.D. is Vice Provost for Digital Learning at the University of Central Florida. In this role he oversees all classroom technology and the distance learning strategy, policies, and practices of one of the nation’s largest universities, serving 68,000 students, where online learning represents more than 47% of the university's annual credit hours. In his career, Tom has administered e-learning development for both academic (public and private) and industrial (Fortune 500, government/military) audiences. He has been recognized with a number of awards including the WCET Richard Jonsen Award, the USDLA Outstanding Leadership Award, and been named an Online Learning Consortium Fellow. He is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and serves on a number of national advisory boards. He is also an award-winning author of several mystery novels.
Russ Poulin is Senior Director of Policy and Analysis for WCET, the WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies, which is a national organization focused on the practice, policy, and advocacy of technology-enhanced learning in higher education. Russ directs WCET’s state and national policy efforts, research activities, and supports efforts to improve the practices of multi-institution consortia. Russ represented the distance education community on national committees, comments on policy issues, and edits the WCET Frontiers blog. Russ received a bachelors from the University of Colorado Denver and a masters from the University of Northern Colorado. He is also partial to movies, cats, and his wife, Laurie.
For nearly a decade, Ubell headed Tandon Online, the digital learning unit of NYU's School of Engineering, ranked No. 2 by US News & World Report of the nation’s Computer Information Technology online graduate programs. Recipient of the highest honor given for individual achievement in digital education, the A. Frank Mayadas Leadership Award, Ubell is a fellow of the Online Learning Consortium. He serves on the Advisory Board of OLC's Online Learning journal and is a member of McGraw-Hill’s Learning Science Research Advisory Board. A columnist for EdSurge and a frequent contributor to Inside Higher Ed, among other periodicals, he is Vice Dean Emeritus, NYU Tandon School of Engineering. Ubell is the author of Going Online (Routledge, 2017) and the editor of Virtual Teamwork (2010), among more than 2 dozen other books. At The New School, he heads a 4-course online certificate, Designing Online Learning Programs. Over his career, Ubell’s online programs at NYU and Stevens Institute of Technology have enrolled more than 30,000 students. In China, he was head of three blended master's at Central University of Finance and Economics and Beijing Institute of Technology. In his consulting practice, he has supported online efforts at The New School, NYU’s Wagner School and LIM College, among other institutions.
Mike Goldstein came to Washington in 1978 to organize and lead the Higher Education practice at law firm Dow Lohnes, which merged with global law firm Cooley in 2014, where he was co-chair of the practice until 2016 and now continues as senior counsel. Mike advises and represents public, independent and for-profit schools, colleges and universities and a wide variety of education service providers, associations, accrediting organizations and financial interests in the broad education vertical. Before coming to DC, Mike was founding Director of the New York City Urban Corps and then successively Assistant City Administrator and Director of University Relations in the Office of the Mayor of the City of New York and Associate Vice Chancellor for Urban and Governmental Affairs and Associate Professor of Urban Sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Mike is a trustee and former board chair of Fielding Graduate University, a trustee of Vermont College of Fine Arts and a director of the University of the District of Columbia Foundation, a founding member of the Board of Directors of The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars and of the American-Russian Cultural Cooperation Foundation. He is a recipient of Richard Jonsen Award for leadership and service to the e-learning community, the President’s Medal from Excelsior College, the Hall of Fame Award from the United States Distance Learning Association, and a Doctor of Humane Letters (H.C.) from Fielding Graduate University. He holds a BA from Cornell University and a law degree from New York University, and he was a Loeb Fellow in Advanced Urban and Environmental Design at the Harvard Graduate School of Design.

Extended Abstract


  • 1:00-1:30  Registration/Check-in

  • 1:30-1:35  Welcome and Opening Remarks - Jennifer Mathes, Interim Executive Director, OLC

  • 1:35-1:55  General Session One: Measuring Impact, Tom Cavanagh, UCF

  • 1:55-2:20  Breakout Session One

  • 2:20-2:40  General Session Two: Policy and Regulations Impacting Online Education, Russ Poulin, Executive Director WCET

  • 2:40-3:05  Breakout Session Two

  • 3:05-3:15  Break

  • 3:15-3:35  General Session Three: Partnership Strategies, Bob Ubell, Vice Dean Emeritus, Online Learning at NYU Tandon Online, School of Engineering; Michael Goldstein, Cooley, LLP

    5 Important Reasons Why Your Online Program Should Enter Into Productive Corporate Partnerships 

    A session that encourages you to enter into partnerships with corporate, professional society and other productive partnerships that will benefit your online program in at least 5 principal ways—in addition to (1) generating new enrollments and tuition revenue from corporate employees and society members, it offers you the possibility of (2) initiating joint research as well as establishing (3) actively engaged corporate external advisory board participation. Corporate and other partners can also be enlisted in (4) marketing and branding efforts and (5) extending recruitment nationally and globally in parallel with the footprints of your partners in the US and abroad. Examples of successful initiatives will be examined, together with effective approaches on how to introduce pinpointed strategies. Attendees will participate in working groups to explore how institutions might launch partnership programs that fit their online profiles. 

    While one route to increasing enrollment in online programs is for an institution to develop one-on-one relationships with employers to take advantage of their employee tuition support opportunities, except for the largest institutions these efforts tend to be limited to the geographic area immediately surrounding the school. Another rapidly emerging approach is to connect with the new breed of organizations, such as InStride, Guild and CAEL, that serve as intermediaries between employers and institutions to connect employees with online and hybrid learning opportunities. This discussion will consider the costs, benefits, opportunities and complexities of such relationships.

  • 3:35-4:00  Breakout Session Three

  • 4:00-4:30  Panel Discussion and Closing Remarks