OLC Innovate 2019 - Four Perspectives and a Podcast

Posted on Thursday, Apr 11, 2019
In episode 38, Ryan speaks to four wonderful people — Kate Sonka, Tina Rettler-Pagel, Keegan Long-Wheeler, and Veronica Armour — about their work and experience that led them to the OLC Innovate 2019 conference in Denver. Four for the price of one! (Which is $0.)

Show Notes

You can read the full transcript here.


I was trying to make a Four Weddings and a Funeral reference in the title. Ah, well. For info on today’s guests keep scrolling down. Some of the referenced bits from today’s show are listed below:

Kate Sonka

Tina Rettler-Pagel

Keegan Long-Wheeler

Veronica Armour

Thanks for listening!

I would love to hear from you. You can find TNP on Twitter at @newprofcast and Ryan at @ryanstraight. You can also email podcast -> thenewprofessor.com.

Don’t forget to subscribe with Stitcher, Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, Spotify, or wherever you catch your pods.


Kate Sonka - Assistant Director of Academic Technology at the College of Arts & Letters at Michigan State University

Kate Sonka is the Assistant Director of Academic Technology at the College of Arts & Letters at Michigan State University. She is interested in second language acquisition, the role of language in identity development, and the intersection of accessibility and experiential learning. Her instructional experience includes a first-year writing course for non-native English speakers; a study abroad on language acquisition and global English in China; a study away to Los Angeles for students to explore and meet leaders in the film and creative industries; and a study away to Silicon Valley for students to engage and build relationships with tech companies around accessibility. Stemming from her interest in how accessibility exists in professional and academic spaces, Kate was recently named the Executive Director of Teach Access, has consulted with the U.S. Department of Labor on accessible hiring practices, and is the founder and director of the Accessible Learning Conference at Michigan State University.

Tina Rettler-Pagel - Faculty, Chief Online Learning Officer at Madison College

Tina Rettler-Pagel serves as a Faculty member and Director of Online Learning/Chief Online Learning Officer at Madison College, in Madison, Wisconsin. Tina also serves as one of the college’s Quality Matters (QM) Coordinators, as QM Master Reviewer, and QM online facilitator. Tina holds a B.S in Education with an emphasis on Emotional Disabilities from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an M.S. in Administrative Leadership from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She is currently working on a Student Affairs Administration Doctorate through the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. Additionally, Tina has completed an Online Learning Consortium (OLC) Teaching Certificate, as well as OLC’s Institute for Engaged Leadership in Online Learning (IELOL) in 2017.

Her research interests include factors that influence retention and persistence in the online classroom, impostor syndrome, women in higher education leadership and governance, digital equity, and community college approaches to teaching and learning.

When consulting with faculty, and in her own teaching and learning practice, Tina shares three important lessons: each person brings something important to the table, engagement matters, and never underestimate the power of kindness and being inclusive. Tina’s hashtags? #Mom #CommunityCollegeProud #OnWisconsin #A11yAdvocate #DoctoralCandidate #Includer #Kindness #Connector #OnlineLearning #TechNerd #Resilience #StrongGirlsStrongWomen #Hockey #Fishing #ImpostorSyndromeFighter #AnythingSummer #JamMaker #ComeAsYouAre #TinaSwag #StartWhereYouAre

Keegan Long-Wheeler - Educational Technologist, Office of Digital Learning, University of Oklahoma

Keegan uses his background in science, pedagogy, technology, and design to provide others with holistic solutions for their instructional and technological needs. As an educational technologist, Keegan supports faculty and instructional designers as they work together to create and run online masters programs for the the Office of Digital Learning at the University of Oklahoma. Day to day, Keegan continuously explores technologies to determine their viability in online classrooms — open and accessible tools are his favorite! Being a certified chemistry teachers, Keegan also strives to understand where technologies transfer across classrooms and disciplines.

Keegan enjoys creating open web projects and designing professional development curriculum — his projects includes GOBLIN, eXperience Play, WebFest, and Canvas Camp. Since Keegan loves meeting new people and learning from others, reach out to him on Twitter, his blog, or over email. Ask him about hedgehogs or his involvement in conferences

Veronica (Ronnie) Armour - Jack of All Trades, currently an Instructional Design Specialist

Veronica Armour is an educator and learning designer interested in developing learning experiences that make creative use of technology. She is an instructional designer in the School of Communication and Information at Rutgers University where she also teaches part-time for the Information Technology and Informatics program. She serves on the Executive Board of the Emerging Learning Design organization and is involved with the NJ Makers community. She has experience with developing online courses, workshops, and events related to teaching and learning with technology. She is a frequent presenter at conferences and workshops at the local and national level. Her current work involves practical application of learning design research in the areas of course development, active learning, and diversity and inclusion initiatives. As Raspberry Pi Certified Educator she enjoys tinkering with technology and hosting workshops to inspire interest in STEM activities.