St. Norbert College is a four-year, Catholic liberal arts college located in De Pere, Wisconsin. The college serves approximately 2,200 undergraduate and graduate students.
Vice President and Chief Information Officer
Serving as a member of the President’s Cabinet, I am responsible for building, sustaining and leading college-wide information technology programs, with an emphasis on enhancing the role technology plays in support of teaching and learning on a liberal arts campus. Other responsibilities include promoting a culture of innovation across campus and overseeing the college’s enterprise risk management plan.
Major accomplishments in this role include:
Strategic Vision and Leadership
- Consolidated the college’s information technology departments into one division and led staff in the development of its mission, vision, and values.
- Developed and implemented a comprehensive IT strategic plan and ensured the integration of IT strategy into the college’s strategic plan.
- Reorganized the division to better serve the campus community, including establishing a professionally staffed Service Desk, created a staffing plan to address resource gaps, and focused on ongoing professional development to help staff succeed in their roles.
- Built a collaborative team environment by renovating ITS office space to create an open work environment, focusing on team-building through activities, retreats, and collective participation in service, and being transparent about activities and plans.
- Utilized a zero-based budgeting approach to create a budget that accurately reflected the division’s needs and expenses, identifying over 30% of operating funds that could be reallocated to support refresh programs and strategic priorities.
- Promoted a culture of assessment and evaluation by instituting annual participation in national studies (CDS, ECAR, MISO) and benchmarking the college against peer, aspirant, and other comparable institutions.
- Advocated for and wrote a college-wide laptop requirement; established and secured funding for a scholarship fund to help Pell-eligible students meet the requirement.
- Brought a strategic focus to college-wide initiatives, including participating in strategic and master planning, overseeing the enterprise risk management plan, and helping to build a culture of innovation as the chair of the Big Ideas Group.
- Conceptualized and launched a multi-institutional collaborative focused on innovation in teaching and learning, and served as lead author and project manager for a $280,000 grant the collaborative received to build online competency modules.
- Partnered with telecommunications company, NSight, to create a regional K-20 CIO Roundtable group that meets quarterly.
Technical and Project Management
- Led the design and installation of technology for over 10 construction projects, including a $40 million science building, state-of-the art gender center, innovative library studio, sports facility, residence halls, and performing arts center.
- Upgraded the wireless network to 802.11ac and expanded it by 30+ percent to support coverage and density needs.
- Identified the need for, secured donor funding, and implemented Salesforce CRM as a “system of engagement” to support constituent relationship management in Admissions and Advancement, reducing applicant processing time by 80-90 percent (from 2-3 weeks to 2-3 days) and creating data entry, paper, and other efficiencies that generated a system payback of less than one year.
- Implemented a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) and zero clients to support computing in on campus labs and provide students with vLab, a “virtual” lab where they can access institutional software at any time, from their own device.
- Instituted refresh programs for computers, learning spaces, and infrastructure (servers, storage, network, etc.) to ensure college technology is systematically and regularly updated.
- Advocated for “best-of-breed” systems that were needed to support departmental operations, including StarRez for housing and DegreeWorks for advising, and secured their purchase and implementation.
- Modernized and expanded IT services to better support anytime, anywhere access, including migrating from Zimbra to Google Apps, moving Moodle to a cloud-hosted environment, adding mobile printing and video capture capabilities, and developing a mobile app.
- Promoted process improvement across the organization with enterprise system enhancements that included implementing auto packaging for financial aid, moving to an online purchase order and encumbrance system, and providing students and their parents with proxy access for financial aid, billing, and more.
Communication and Collaboration
- Established IT governance with a college-wide committee that includes representatives from all academic and administrative divisions, a steering committee focused on enterprise applications, and an advisory group focused on academic technology.
- Created an ITS communication plan and implemented a variety of communication strategies to promote an environment of transparency and collaboration, including an annual open house, monthly news blog, roundtable lunches, CIO open office hours, social media sites, and email communications about ITS outages and maintenance.
- Increased overall satisfaction with ITS by 20 percent in the first year, and more than doubled awareness about IT projects and strategic planning.
- Implemented a “back-to-school blitz” program, where IT staff set up in the residence halls during move-in to support student technology needs, and roam the halls of academic buildings during the first week of classes each semester to provide on-the-spot support for faculty in the classrooms.
- Partnered with the Digital Learning Initiative, Library, and Faculty Development to establish, fund, and support a new digital fellow role, grants, and learning communities to support faculty in their integration of technology into teaching and learning.
- Introduced Student Affairs to digital badging and partnered with them to pilot it in a project focused on creating co-curricular transformative pathways for students.
- Collaborated with Academic Affairs and Facilities to create the Learning Spaces Task Force, focused on fostering cross-campus collaboration, communication, and common standards for learning spaces.
- Created an annual “transformative teaching and technology” (T3) conference for faculty to learn about and share their experiences with technology-enabled pedagogies.
- Promoted a yearlong, college-wide conversation around technology and pedagogy, inviting meetings at the discipline level to discuss how technology is shaping their field.
- Provided regular updates on IT-related projects, priorities, and plans at divisional and faculty meetings, and to the core leadership group (all VPs and their direct reports).