From the Director

Celebrations, Reflections, and Warm Wishes from the CTTL

by Debie Lohe, Director for the Reinert CTTL

As the fall semester winds down, I want to take a moment to reflect on the semester we’ve had and to wish everyone speedy grading, safe travels, and peaceful holidays.

Earlier this month, we held our Fall Certificate Ceremony in the Pere Marquette Gallery, which celebrated the accomplishments of the 18 graduate students and faculty who completed Certificate requirements this semester.  Alden Bass, Birton Cowden, Whitney Kline, Aaron Overby, Kyle Schenkewitz, and Diane Reinhold all completed the Certificate in University Teaching Skills this fall.  Twelve others were awarded the Participation Certificate: Katie Heiden Rootes, Steven Jenkins, Kelly Maxwell, Michael Milster, Vicky Moran, Satish Munigala, Jessica Murray, Kitty Newsham, Geoffrey Reddick, Alisha Rorer, Audrey Shelton, and Lina Sun.

As is tradition in the Center, we invited a SLU faculty member to offer some brief reflections on teaching.  We were delighted to have Dr. Stephanie Mooshegian (assistant professor and chair of Organizational Studies in the School for Professional Studies, and one of the Center’s inaugural Innovative Teaching Fellows) share a bit of her own teaching journey and her thoughts on the significance of the Certificate programs.  If you weren’t able to join us, you can find Dr. Mooshegian’s Reflections on Teaching here.

The Fall Certificate Ceremony is one of our favorite events of the year.  It gives us an opportunity to acknowledge the contributions of all those who support the work we do.  We are especially grateful to our Faculty Fellows, to the members of our Advisory Board, and to all of the faculty presenters who facilitated workshops for us this semester.  Most of all, we’re grateful for the commitment of those who pursue the Certificate in the first place; we learn as much from them as they do from us, and we are always energized by their passion for teaching and their commitment to learning.

This Ceremony is the last major event of the fall, and this year, it caps off a very busy semester.  CTTL staff have conducted workshops (both on campus and off), consulted with faculty and other instructors, facilitated pedagogical conversations on a variety of topics, hosted an internationally-acclaimed presenter, and completed their strategic planning work for the next three years.  They’ve done all of this with their usual good humor and deep commitment to the core values that shape all of the work we do in the Center.  As so many of you often stop and tell me: this staff is outstanding, and it is my great pleasure and privilege to work with such a fine and talented team.

As we wrap up the semester that was and head into the holiday season, find a few moments of quiet and reflect on how the semester went and what you might carry with you into the spring:

What moments from your teaching this semester are you grateful for?

What moved you as a teacher and scholar?

When were your students most engaged?

What didn’t go as planned?  Were there surprising lessons in that?

What did you learn this semester about your area of study? about teaching? about yourself?

What one small thing will you do differently next semester?

I hope you found joy in your teaching this semester.  I hope you head into the holidays ready for rest and that you return recharged.  And I hope you’ll join us on Thursday, January 10, for our annual Winter Institute.  This year’s theme is Engaging All Learners in the 21st Century.

From all of us here in the CTTL, warmest wishes for a restful winter break.  We look forward to seeing you in January!