Spring 2017 Upcoming Events

AFFIRM Special Presentation: Microresistance & Ally Development Presented by: Dr. Cynthia Ganote

A woman, Dr. Cynthia Ganote, stands in front of a tree smiling. She is wearing a blue shirt, black sweater, and a long white necklace.

Friday, April 28, 2017

12:55 to 2:55 p.m., Salomon Hall

We often discuss ways to lead difficult dialogues amongst our students, and even ways to serve as allies to students experiencing classroom-based microaggressions. However, what do we do when we witness colleagues who are the targets of bias and microaggressions? This workshop will examine ways in which subtle acts of hostility and bias particularly impact women of all races and ethnicities, faculty and staff of color, and LGBT faculty and staff in academia. In response, we can use constructive tools to serve as allies to our colleagues. This focus on empowerment allows us to take action in our local environments, thereby lessening the impact upon colleagues. RSVP for AFFIRM Special Presentation: Microresistance & Ally Development.

About the Presenter: Dr. Cynthia Ganote, an Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology at Saint Mary’s College of California, previously served as the Director of Faculty Development at Saint Mary’s College of California, where she created the Center for Teaching and Learning (now called the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Scholarship). In her time at Vanderbilt University, she served in their Center for Teaching (CFT) as a Master Teaching Fellow, Senior Master Teaching Fellow, and then Acting Assistant Director, under the leadership of Director Allison Pingree and Associate Director Peter Felten. Cynthia is an active member of the POD Network (the national faculty development organization), and one of her current projects focuses on ways to address microaggressions that are directed toward faculty and staff members in academia with techniques called “microresistance.” This collaborative work is conducted with colleagues Dr. Floyd Cheung of Smith College, and Dr. Tasha Souza of Boise State University. She is currently working on a book project for The Policy Press at the University of Bristol entitled Diverse Faculty, Re-Shaping the Professoriate. RSVP for AFFIRM Special Presentation: Microresistance & Ally Development.

This event is co-sponsored by the CEE, CID, College of Arts and Sciences, and the femSTEM Faculty Cohort.

Spring Faculty Writing Retreats

A picture of a pen and paper

Monday, April 24, 2017

1:00 p.m. - 4:00p.m., KIPJ Boardroom 

Back by popular demand—The Center for Educational Excellence and femSTEM Faculty Cohort have organized a private space to foster the writing productivity for ALL interested faculty. The aim is to assign a block of time that will help faculty incorporate writing into their schedules. The format for these sessions is for faculty to work quietly on their own items, with plenty of coffee and snacks provided. Occurring once a month, three retreats are planned for the spring. RSVP for Spring Faculty Writing Retreats.

Honors Program: Team Teaching
Best Practices for Integrative Team Teaching

Image of wooden figures symbolizing teams

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

12:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m., KIPJ-I

Are you thinking about team-teaching in the future? Or have you taught an interdisciplinary
course that did not quite meet your expectations? Please join us in April for a 90 minute workshop on developing your team-teaching curriculum. Team-teaching is a significant part of USD’s Honors Program, with our honors students consistently ranking team-taught courses as one of their favorite aspects of the program, along with the senior thesis. With this in mind, it is absolutely critical that team-taught integrative courses be implemented effectively.
Come participate in this interactive workshop which includes student experiences, discussion of characteristics of quality team-teaching, and an opportunity for faculty to develop their own team-teaching curriculum. This workshop is especially encouraged for those faculty planning to team teach in the new Core. We will assist faculty in navigating the course submission and approval process through CIM.
Lunch will be provided RSVP for the Honors Program Team Teaching event.

Postdoc Lecture Series: Glycocalyx Based Strategies to Modulate Stem Cell Fates

Presented By: Mia Huang 

 A picture of Mia Huang 

Thursday, April 27, 2017

12:15p.m. - 1:15 p.m., MRH 135

Stem cell fates are governed by a precise set of growth factors signaling events at the stem cell surface. Such events are often orchestrated by heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs), which template growth factor binding to their corresponding receptors. Here, we report strategies that exploit the function of HSPGs to either promote differentiation or maintain the pluripotency of mouse ESCs. By re-decorating the stem cell glycocalyx with synthetic neoproteoglycans (neoPGs) that bind to fibroblast growth factor 2, we demonstrate that neural specification can be rescued in HSPG-deficient ESCs. We also show that small molecules that antagonize HSPGs can arrest ESCs in a pluripotent state. Altogether, we demonstrate that the glycocalyx presents a unique opportunity to modulate stem cell fates. Lunch will be provided RSVP for Glycocalyx Based Strategies to Modulate Stem Cell Fates Postdoc Lecture

CORE Workshop: Advanced Writing Workshop

A picture of a crater exploding  

Thursday, April 27, 2017 

12:15 p.m. - 2:15p.m., KIPJ 218

This is the final year before implementation of the new core curriculum. Our core workshop series will help guide faculty in course and assignment design. Each core workshop will focus on one area of the core curriculum. After the initial presentation and discussion period, attendees will work on their individual courses with guided feedback. Faculty should bring their laptops and course syllabi to the workshop. RSVP for the Advanced Writing CORE Workshop. 

Innovation in Experiential Education Award Luncheon


Thursday, May 4, 2017

12:15 p.m. - 2:15 p.m., KIPJ-A

Each year the Center for Educational Excellence is proud to sponsor the Innovation in Experiential Education (IEE) Award to signify our commitment to facilitating student-centered experiential learning, including but not limited to service learning, internships, classroom simulations, and research. Along with the award, the CEE hosts a celebration luncheon where the award winner presents on their innovative work. Join us as professor Mike Lawless (2015-2016 winner) presents his work.

Dr. Mike Lawless will be presenting on his experiential innovations integrated into several of his Entrepreneurship and Management courses.  Implementing aspects of the popular TV show “Shark Tank”,  Dr. Lawless structures his courses in a manner that students are able to develop a business opportunity and consider basic reasons why their ventures might be a viable and attract investment.  In the so-called V2 Pitch Competition, students experience the actual business development process and get feedback from a panel of actual Angel investors. RSVP for the Innovation Award Luncheon. 

Fabulous First Friday: Exploration of Wellness and Balance

A picture of stacked rocks

Friday, May 5, 2017

10:15 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.,  Sacred Heart Dance Studio

Through a combination of relaxation techniques, you are invited to experience energization and
release within your own body and mind. Professor Ryan Scrimger, Departments of Theatre and
Music, has practiced and taught relaxation techniques for many years and brings it into her
classroom to help students prepare for high-stress situations and recognize goals and obstacles with
greater clarity. In this participatory workshop, we will use sensory awareness, physical loosening and
guided imagery to inspire individual stillness that is filled with inner connection. Come prepared to
explore, receive and release. Participants are encouraged to wear comfortable clothing and be ready
to be either (your choice) on the floor (bring a mat if you wish) or at ease in a chair. RSVP for the Fabulous First Friday.

 CORE Workshop: Advanced Integration


Illustration of tree with conversation bubbles

Friday, May 5, 2017

3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.,  MRH 135

Integration is a fundamental component of the new core curriculum. Students must meet this requirement through both a spring semester LLC course during their first year and an upper division core project that they will complete during their junior or senior years. In this session we will walk faculty through the learning outcomes for the Advanced Integration requirement and provide concrete examples of successful syllabi and assignments. Light refreshments will be served.RSVP for the CORE Workshop Advanced Integration.

22nd Annual Women's & Gender Studies
and Women's Center Reception & Banquet

Illustration showing women different ethnicities

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

5:30 p.m. - 7:00 p.m., UC Forum AB

Join faculty, administrators, staff, and students to celebrate those graduating with Women’s and Gender Studies minors. At 5:30 p.m. students will present posters based on their capstone projects from the Women’s and Gender Studies seminar. At 6 p.m. a buffet dinner program will begin where the 2017 recipient of the Linda A. M. Perry award for Outstanding Achievement in Women’s and Gender Studies will be recognized. Students in the Women’s Center and Gender Studies minor will also be honored. Come applaud the accomplishments of our (soon-to-be) alumni/ae! RSVP for the Women & Gender Studies and Women's Center Reception & Banquet.

AFFIRM Workshop for faculty in STEM

Time Managment

Tenure & Time Managment: How to Manage Your Time so You Can Publish Prolifically and Have a Life Beyond the Ivory Tower

Friday, May 12, 1:00pm - 4:00pm SCST, 471 

Presented by the National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity

Facilitated by: Anthony Ocampo, Ph.D.

Refreshments will be provided                                     

Center for Educational Excellence
Recognition Reception

image of sunflowers and wine bottles, reception

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m., UC Forum B

The Center for Educational Excellence cordially invites you to a reception honoring CEE presenters, administrators, faculty and staff in recognition of their support and involvement during the 2016-17 academic year. Travel grant recipients will be recognized and this year’s top CEE participants will be awarded certificates. RSVP for the Recognition Reception.

AFFIRM Workshop for Women Faculty in STEM


Effective Leadership Skills for Women

Saturday, May 20, 8:30am - 1:00pm SCST, 232                                              

Presented by COACh

Facilitated by: Nancy Houfek, M.F.A.

In your profession, would you like to:

  • Create a stronger executive presence?Communicate with more authenticity & excitement?
  • Improve your team's presentation skills?
  • Negotiate mores successfully?
  • Lead with greater effectiveness?

Nancy Houfek's workshops, consultation and coaching can help you to achieve these goals, using the dynamic techniques she has distilled from decades of experience in professional theater and from working with hundreds of clients over the past 35 years.

Whether you're in corporate management, scientific research, public policy, academia or the arts, Nancy can help you increase your power and your presence.

Lunch will be provided.


May 2017 Newsletter

Adjunct Feature Interview

with Keith MacDonald, Biology

Innovative Pedagogy Interview

with Dr. Truc Ngo, Associate Professor, Engineering

New Faculty Interview

with Dr. Ashley Feinsinger, Assistant Professor, Philosophy

Innovative Pedagogy Interview

with Dr. Viviana Alexandrowicz, Associate Professor, Teaching and Learning

Faculty Integration Award

The goal of the USD Just Read! program is to provide a common read around a theme that aligns with the values and mission of USD and the theme from the Changemaker Hub. In order to engage more of the USD  community in conversation, the USD Just Read program is introducing a “USD Just Read Integration Award.” This award will be granted to the faculty member who best incorporates this year’s book selection in their course. As integration is a key concept in education and the new core curriculum, such an award comes at a great time to highlight the wonderful work our faculty are doing with their students. A number of events and programs are scheduled for the academic year of 2016 – 2017 to provide more opportunities to discuss the topics in the book with students. Please check out the CEE website for more details and join the Just Read Black Board Organization by emailing

Deadline: All submissions must be received by 5:00 p.m. April 28th and submitted via this form.

Recipient of the award will receive a $1,000.00 stipend as well as the opportunity for their work to be highlighted in multiple venues.

Come visit one of our consultants to get some advice and ideas to make the rest of the semester more successful!

The CEE offers free and confidential consultations to all USD faculty regarding  any and all aspects of Teaching & Learning and Faculty Development. This may include course and syllabus design, integration of various pedagogies in the classroom, the ARRT process, improving student evaluations, and so much more.

Call (619-260-7402) or e-mail ( the CEE and we would be happy to schedule a consultation. All information will be kept strictly confidential.

CEE Blackboard Organization

Join the CEE BB Org today in order to gain access to the many CEE resources available for all USD faculty.

All event archives - including handouts, powerpoints, and videos - are available only through our BB Org. Login to BB and scroll down towards the bottom of the page to see Organizations.

Don't have access? E-mail us at and we would be happy to add you to the BB org. An active USD e-mail address is all you need to gain access. 

Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) Resources

Are you interested in the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning? The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) uses discovery, reflection, and evidence-based methods to research effective teaching and student learning. These findings are peer reviewed and publicly disseminated in an ongoing cycle of systematic inquiry into classroom practices.

The CEE Blackboard organization is a resource tool for those who are looking into creating a SOTL project or have started on one and want to begin a literature search. Additionally, our SoTL folder also contains literature information on Active Learning and Team-Based Learning.

The CEE would be happy to consult with you for all of your SoTL needs. If you don’t have access to our blackboard organization, please e-mail and we would be happy to grant you access.

USD Travel Grants

The deadline for this receipt of proposals is Friday, April 21, 2017 at 5pm.

The CEE supports the university in all phases of pedagogical development. The fundamental purpose of the CEE Travel Grant program is to expose faculty to key issues in teaching and learning in higher education and encourage development on CEE's programming themes of Pedagogical such as: Development, Diversity, Assessment, Instructional Technology, and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. The CEE will grant travels for up to 4 faculty to attend pertinent conferences held between July 1 and December 31, 2017. Grant amounts are up to $1,200.00 each. We will evaluate proposals on the strength of their connection to the previous mentioned pedagogical themes. Proposals should clearly indicate how topics to be explored at the conference support the teaching mission of the university. They should also provide a description how they might design a CEE presentation to inform other USD faculty upon their return from the conference.

Selection Criteria
The primary criterion of judgment will be the excellence of the proposal and the thoughtfulness given to its applicability to CEE program themes of pedagogical development, diversity, assessment instructional technology, and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. Three additional key criteria are:  1) the general applicability of the topic for multiple disciplines; 2) the novelty of the pedagogy or topic; and 3) the vision for designing a CEE presentation based on the conference information. Applicants can only be funded once per fiscal year and preference will be given to first time applications. See a list of previous grantees. All information regarding these grants including applications and guidelines can be found on the CEE Travel Grant website.

All proposals will be evaluated by members of the Center for Educational Excellence Advisory Committee.

Contact Information

Center for Educational Excellence
Camino 1F 5998
5998 Alcalá Park
San Diego, CA 92110

Phone: (619) 260-7402
Fax: (619) 849-8353