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I am the University of Toronto’s Institutional strategist for Academic Technologies and I direct teaching & learning system operations for the university. I am an anthropologist with a doctoral degree from OISE. For the past couple of decades I have been fortunate to have positions which have allowed me to both think strategically about technology in higher education, and also have the opportunity to actualize ideas on an operational day-to-day level. Prior to taking on that kind of role for the University of Toronto as a whole, I served as director of academic technology for the Faculty of Medicine, and before that OISE.
The Institutional Strategist role is a unique opportunity. Functionally, I am responsible for providing strategic and tactical leadership in the development and implementation of information technology services that support the academic mission of Canada’s largest university, and one of the top ten universities in the world. I am working with faculty, students, academic administrators, and teaching support and instructional technology units to advance the University’s academic mission and in particular, its commitment to teaching.
There is also a certain duality in my current position. I am working as part of the University of Toronto’s Centre for Teaching Support and Innovation (CTSI), as well as part of the University of Toronto’s CIO's Office, equivalent to a director in the central university’s Information and Technology Services (I+TS) portfolio.
When time permits, I teach (as an associate faculty member in the Department of Theory & Policy Studies in Education) and do some research; my last project over the summer involved geotagging old manhole covers in Toronto and connecting the metadata to historical records of urban development found in the City Archives and UofT Map Library. Ask me why if you are curious :)