Professional News

CELT Announces 2021-22 Teaching Innovation Institute Faculty Cohort

LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 3, 2021) — Of its many effects, the COVID-19 pandemic brought about rapid innovations in teaching. Courses were redesigned for a range of delivery modes to in-person and remote students (often at the same time) and the conversation about active learning, class community and belonging took on new urgency as the challenges of the pandemic amplified the barriers — systemic and discrete — to student engagement, motivation and success.

Innovation, of course, is a long-term project whose importance is further underscored by the past 15 months. In February 2020, just before the shift to emergency remote instruction, the Center for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching (CELT) launched the Teaching Innovation Institute, a yearlong, cohort-based program for exploring, experimenting, reflecting on and implementing innovative and inclusive teaching methods. Coordinated by Jill Abney, the institute involves interdisciplinary and cross-college collaboration among the cohort as well as a partnership with the UK Smart Campus Initiative through which faculty participants receive iPads for the development of digital activities, assignments and curricula. Despite the twists and turns of 2020, the institute’s first faculty cohort persisted and thrived as a learning community.

After soliciting applications during the spring semester, CELT is pleased to announce the second cohort of the Teaching Innovation Institute. During the 2021-22 academic year, these teacher-scholars will learn with and from each other as we look to the futures of teaching and learning at UK and for higher education as a whole. Their work embodies the faculty-driven spirit of our institution as well as its teaching mission in the Commonwealth and beyond.

The cohort will include: 

  • Ruth Brown, Hispanic Studies, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Diana Byrne, Civil Engineering, College of Engineering
  • Julian Dupuis, Entomology, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment
  • Amanda Ellis, Biostatistics, College of Public Health
  • Heather Erwin, Kinesiology and Health Promotion, College of Education
  • Lindsey Fay, Interiors, College of Design
  • Jane Grise, Legal Research and Writing, College of Law
  • Regina Hannemann, Electrical and Computer Engineering, College of Engineering
  • Kyra Hunting, Journalism and Media, College of Communication and Information
  • Aaron Hynds, Music, College of Fine Arts
  • Anushka Karkelanova, Statistics, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Darshak Patel, Economics, Gatton College of Business and Economics
  • Katherine Paullin, Mathematics, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Kristen Platt, Neuroscience, College of Medicine
  • Kathy Swan, Curriculum and Instruction, College of Education
  • Mark Swanson, Health, Behavior, and Society, College of Public Health
  • Katie Twist, Internal Medicine, College of Medicine
  • Elizabeth Williams, Gender and Women’s Studies, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Jessica Wilson, College of Nursing
  • Heather Worne, Anthropology, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Cheryl Vanderford, Physician Assistant Studies, College of Health Sciences

The selection process was highly competitive, based on how plans for innovation would impact student learning in meaningful and diverse ways, address classroom challenges and barriers to learning, and prompt the design and implementation of curricula, activities and assignments based on principles of inclusive and digital pedagogies. CELT looks forward to working with the 2021-22 cohort as they address teaching practices and pedagogical commitments while also imagining new possibilities for student learning.

As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.