The College has appointed Neil Witikko, Ed.D., as its Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning.
Witikko is an Associate Professor of Education at St. Scholastica, where he has taught since 2012. He was Minnesota's K-12 Teacher of the Year in 1997-98.
The Center for Teaching and Learning was created to provide professional development assistance to beginning and experienced faculty in attaining excellence in teaching and the scholarship of teaching and learning.
"The position - and the Center Dr. Witikko will lead - will enable and give occasion to celebrate a culture that values, enhances, and recognizes teaching excellence," said Dr. Wolfgang Natter, St. Scholastica's Vice President for Academic Affairs. "Our vision is that of a collaborative culture of faculty assisting other faculty in fostering classroom creativity, quality, innovation, and inclusive excellence, and Dr. Witikko is eminently prepared to fill this role."
Witikko said he is excited to work collaboratively with the St. Scholastica faculty in strengthening teaching and learning.
"I have been fortunate to teach in all modes of instructional delivery: face-to-face, blended, and fully online," he said. "I also teach in both the undergraduate and graduate programs. Consequently, I appreciate the needs of full-time and adjunct faculty members in delivering high-quality, student-centered instruction. Our center will develop programs that promote, support, and enhance teaching effectiveness and learning in a student-centered environment.
"Incredible teaching and learning is happening on St. Scholastica's campuses every day, and we need to celebrate those successes at the same time that we support innovative, best-practice teaching and learning."
Witikko will consult with faculty on an individual basis and establish a classroom observation rotation. He will develop and deliver a series of training opportunities based on feedback and input from all faculty and an advisory committee.
"Based on the needs within schools and programs, support programs will be prioritized and developed," he said.