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Online course development and learning to be centralized

July 24, 2014
Meryl Sussman

Meryl Sussman

The divisions of Academic Affairs, and Outreach, Engagement and Regional Development are combining resources to coordinate the university’s online course and program development, as well as to support student success in online-delivered programming.

Meryl Sussman, recently appointed Assistant Vice President for Outreach Adult and Non-Credit Programming, will establish a new office which will draw on the talents of professionals in both Faculty Development and eLearning Services.

This new endeavor adds to Sussman’s previous responsibilities for coordinating Outreach’s credit and non-credit programming for adult learners through distributed learning methodologies and at NIU’s regional centers, community college sites and other off-campus locations.

“Distributed learning in all modalities is a strategic priority for the university,” said Provost and Executive Vice President Lisa Freeman. “NIU is fortunate to have a leader with Meryl Sussman’s experience across academic sectors focused on improving the support and services available to faculty, staff and students.”

Sussman came to NIU in 2010 on a joint appointment to both Outreach and the Provost’s Office as the director for Off-Campus Adult Programming. In that capacity, she developed new strategies to evaluate existing programs, build systems that assist departments in handling inquiries and connect existing NIU services to provide support to off-campus students.

Photo of an NIU honors student using a computer at Founders Memorial Library.Prior to joining NIU, Sussman was a dean and an assistant vice president at College of DuPage where she focused on career, and technical credit and non-credit programming. Before that, she served as an assistant dean at Middlesex Community College in Massachusetts and as a faculty member and an administrator at F.H. LaGuardia Community College/CUNY.

“It would be difficult to find a person better prepared to take on this challenge,” said Vice President for Outreach, Engagement and Regional Development Anne Kaplan. “Meryl is comfortable with technology-mediated learning, has been working with adult students for most of her career, and is a seasoned administrator who knows our region.”

Sussman resides in Burr Ridge. She holds a B.A. in English and American literature and secondary education from Queens College/CUNY. She also obtained an M.A. in English literature from the University of Rochester in New York, a graduate certificate in computer science from N.Y. Institute of Technology and is making progress towards an Ed.D. in Higher Education Administration from UIUC.