RLOE Collaborators

“Wyverstone Community Cafe” by oatsy40 is licensed under CC BY 2.0

The following are the Collaborators of the RLOE Leadership Program. Click on the dropdown arrow next to the name of each Collaborator to find out areas of expertise and a short bio.

Matt Bloom
  • OER adoption/creation advisor,
  • Open Pedagogy/Open Practices advisor,
  • I have statewide influence in my or other states on policies, strategies, etc.

I have about ten years of experience in open education, ranging from coordinating a multi-college OER initiative (OER Coordinator for Maricopa 2018-20), establishing a statewide network of OER practitioners (AZ Regional Conference, OERizona Network), publishing research in open pedagogy, designing and publishing OER, working on ED grants (OpenSkill), supporting faculty and staff on OER projects, designing (and getting approved funding for) a college-level OER Strategic Plan.

Alexis Clifton
  • OER adoption/creation advisor,
  • Open Pedagogy/Open Practices advisor,
  • I have statewide influence in my or other states on policies, strategies, etc.

Like so many of us, I encountered OER through an attempt to solve a real-world problem for students in my English composition courses when I taught at Tacoma Community College in 2009. Since then, my professional path has centered around OER, as a course designer, curriculum developer, educational technology practitioner, and system-level OER services director for SUNY. I worked with the 64 SUNY institutions, including community colleges, technical colleges, comprehensive colleges, and R1 universities, to implement and grow OER Programs. I’ve developed large-scale professional development programming to serve a highly diverse population of students, faculty, and administrators. I continue to be interested in the power of teamwork to support OER and Open Pedagogy initiatives, as reflected with the book I recently co-edited, Open Pedagogy Approaches: Faculty, Library, and Student Collaborations. My current focus is on course accessibility practices and universal design for learning at SUNY Geneseo. My driving goal continues to be expanding opportunities for access and success in higher education.

Urooj Nizami
  • OER adoption/creation advisor,
  • Open Pedagogy/Open Practices advisor,
  • Underrepresented Student support advisor,
  • Social Justice, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion advisor

Urooj is the Open Education Strategist in the Office of Open Education at Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) in British Columbia, Canada where she supports and facilitates open education initiatives by providing expertise through consultations and technical training. She oversees the management of the Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC) Program, the Open Education Research Institute, and provides support to Open Educational Resources (OER) grantees, Open Pedagogy Fellows, and Open Education Research Fellows. Urooj also co-facilitates the use of KPU’s Open Publishing Suite (OPUS). Urooj was previously an ACRL Resident Librarian (2017-2020) at Temple University Libraries in Philadelphia where she worked to expand Open Education initiatives. She is a trained librarian with a degree from McGill University’s School of Information Studies.

Wayde Oshiro 
  • OER adoption/creation advisor,
  • Social Justice,
  • Diversity, Equity, Inclusion advisor

Wayde Oshiro is the Interim Learning Commons and Library Coordinator at Leeward Community College in Pearl City, Hawaiʻi. In 2014, Wayde helped establish the OER initiative at Leeward CC, a Native Hawaiian, Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institution. Since 2015 he has served as one of the leads for the University of Hawaiʻi Community Colleges System OER Initiative. The system-funded initiative supports incentive programs, professional development, outreach, speakers, and capacity building activities. Wayde facilitates campus and systemwide training ranging from one-hour introductory sessions to intensive multiday workshops. Wayde currently serves as an instructor in the Open Education Network’s Certificate in OER Librarianship Program and is a member of the CCCOER EDI Committee.

Alegria Ribadeneira
  • OER adoption/creation advisor,
  • Open Pedagogy/Open Practices advisor, Underrepresented Student support advisor,
  • Social Justice, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion advisor
Alegria Ribdeneira

I came into open educational practices (OEP) without knowing there was a name for what I was doing. I was creating educational resources for my students because I could not find textbooks that addressed their lived experiences or pedagogical needs. I was also having my students create learning materials for others to learn about their perspectives. I wanted them to feel empowered and have a voice in a world that seldomly listens to the underrepresented. I am a professor of Spanish at a regional comprehensive university that is also a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI). I serve the underserved. It is my greatest joy and privilege.

After several years of unknowingly engaging in OEP, the OER person in my institution approached me and introduced me to the OE community. It was life changing. In 2020 I received the Open Education Global Educator Award, and I am now leading a ZTC (Zero Textbook Cost) initiative so no student of Spanish at my HSI ever has to pay for a Spanish textbook again. I am also Co-PI for our state grant that supports OER efforts on our campus, so I work on recruiting and organizing individuals and teams to take on OER. My university is not affluent and we run our efforts on a skeleton crew of overworked colleagues who wear many hats. We might be few but we are mighty and we know we can always count on the larger OE community for support. Still, some days I feel overwhelmed, there is so much I still don’t know, and I wish I had more time to plan and organize. When it gets overwhelming I keep my eye on the prize: social justice through open education.

Mari Sakiyama
  • Underrepresented Student support advisor,
  • Social Justice,
  • Diversity, Equity, Inclusion advisor

My core values of civil rights and social justice are grounded in my personal background as a first-generation immigrant from Japan traveled alone to pursue my higher education in the U.S., as well as my many years of professional experience in teaching, researching, and leadership. Especially throughout my undergraduate and graduate teaching experience at UNLV (one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse universities in the nation) and WOU (first-generation focused university and soon to be designated as a Hispanic Serving Institution), my awareness of cultural responsiveness and appreciation of equity have grown continually. A good example of my experience addressing the deeds of underserved students is heavily associated with my teaching and student advising practice. Given the unique student diversity of our university, I have learned not only to be academically motivational and inspiring but also to be understanding, empathetic, and inclusive. In addition, as a criminal justice faculty, I encounter students with a variety of backgrounds. Not only I have experience assisting students who have struggled with mental disorders, financial difficulties, and immigration problems to name a few, but I have also encountered students who have dealt with incarcerated family members or themselves. In many of these cases, these students often experience various different hardships that affect their academic performance despite their passion to achieve their educational goals. I feel privileged to be able to contribute to the group in order to serve the needs of underrepresented students and to promote educational resiliency through the open educational practice.

Christina Trunnell
  • OER adoption/creation advisor,
  • Underrepresented Student support advisor,
  • Social Justice, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion advisor,
  • I have statewide influence in my or other states on policies, strategies, etc.
Christina Trunnell

I have worked with open education in various roles, ranging from adopting and remixing OER material for my own students to creating and running a statewide OER program. I have worked with campuses of all sizes including public, private, and tribal institutions in launching and supporting open ed work that fits their community of students and other stakeholders. Experience has taught me that each campus is unique. While there are standard practices and processes within open education, this field is all about asking individuals to step out of their normal patterns and institutions to invest in work that brings them little profit. My approach to creating a plan is a very human one that relies on knowing or assessing the community you are reaching. The majority of my academic career has been spent working in rural, low-income, largely hispanic or migrant based communities. That has shaped the value and significant time I place on equity and inclusive design as well as faculty support programs in OER. Open education’s possibilities for reshaping teaching and scholarly communication to reflect the world we live in is incredible. Faculty are not often well-versed in design, UDX, or how to really change their curriculum in meaningful ways. They need support, help, and levels of advocacy that are atypical of the basic OER plans and yet essential to not just adoptions but sustainability and impact for OER programs. This is my approach and where the depth of my experience lays.

Suzanne Wakim
  • OER adoption/creation advisor,
  • Open Pedagogy/Open Practices advisor,
  • Social Justice, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion advisor,
  • Building faculty training resources

I started the OER program at my college as a faculty member and have helped faculty across the state start programs at their colleges. This has given me many examples of how strategies work at different types of institutions. Additionally, I have built numerous faculty trainings for OER as well as Distance Education, and Student Assessment. These trainings include self-paced experiences, facilitated asynchronous classes, synchronous workshops, and hybrid experiences. I have also helped faculty across the state build new OER. This has given me a good understanding of strategies that are effective for training and motivating faculty.

Quill West
  • OER adoption/creation advisor,
  • Open Pedagogy/Open Practices advisor,
  • Social Justice, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion advisor,
  • I have statewide influence in my or other states on policies, strategies, etc.
Quill West

I chose Open Education as a focus for my career because I saw huge potential for changing people’s lives by moving away from a broken model that says that all education fits within the parameters, and covers, of a traditionally produced textbook. I believe that at its best open education is inclusive and is built for, around, and by students. Because I believe that, I have specific interests in developing open practices and pedagogies that invite students to create for one another. In more recent years, I have started work on decolonizing open materials and using openness as a tool for inspiring alternative viewpoints on traditional topics.

I’m very interested in helping to develop open education plans that have goals and accountability related to social justice. I want to help people build open education projects that recognize and seek to overcome opportunity gaps.

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