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Our Team

Our Team

At the International Institute for Innovative Instruction, we are experts in our fields, from leadership and assessment to instructional design and interactive media. In addition to our expertise, we take pride in our  collaborative approach and our commitment to helping our partners maximize their learning initiatives and positioning their organizations for success. 

Experience & Knowledge

Patrick A. Bennett, Ed.D., MBA, PMP
Vice President, International Institute for Innovative Instruction & Dean, School of Education

As Vice President, International Institute for Innovative Instruction & Dean, School of Education, Dr. Bennett leads a diverse team of faculty and staff dedicated to improving learning. The Institute unites the university's curriculum design capabilities with teaching and learning assessment in order to develop and deliver successful educational solutions. Dr. Bennett works closely with Franklin’s Centers of Excellence to assist in the development and implementation of high-quality learning solutions for Franklin and external partners. Clients include universities (domestic and international), Fortune 100 corporations, and governmental entities.

In addition, Dr. Bennett leads operations for Franklin University’s Global Programs division. In this role, he is responsible for the implementation and management of Global Partnerships.

Dr. Bennett has over 17 years of experience in higher education and provides executive leadership and management for projects that are mission critical to the university’s strategic objectives and worldwide partnerships.

Dr. Bennett has a B.S. in Information Technology, an MBA with a concentration in Financial Leadership from Franklin University, and a Doctor of Education in Interdisciplinary Leadership from Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. Dr. Bennett is also a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and a certified Quality Matters peer reviewer.

Matt Barclay, Ph.D.
Instructional Design Faculty

Dr. Matt Barclay is a member of the Instructional Design Faculty at Franklin. He is particularly interested in instructional design principles for practice, learning and cognition, improving online instruction, adult learning, human performance improvement, and multimedia for instruction. Dr. Barclay holds a Ph.D. in Instructional Technology & Learning Sciences from Utah State University, a master’s degree in Instructional Systems Technology from Indiana University, and a bachelor’s degree in Family Sciences from Brigham Young University.

Bradd Birmingham, MFA
Director of Operations and Digital Design

Bradd is an award winning visual designer and filmmaker. He leads a team of media designers to collaborate and build educational experiences for academic institutions and corporations. Bradd is responsible for the strategic direction of the design process, and is particularly interested in making learning enjoyable.

In addition to his role as a director, Bradd has served as an adjunct faculty instructor at Franklin University and Columbus State Community College.

Bradd graduated with a BFA from the Columbus College of Art and Design and an MFA from The Ohio State University’s Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design program. His work has been published in The Columbus Dispatch, Columbus Alive magazine and the B&O Railroad Heritage Center.

Jeannie Black, DBA(c), MBA, CSSMBB
Credentialing and Scheduling Coordinator

Before arriving at Franklin University, Jeannie wore many hats – editor, data analyst, and project coordinator to name a few, but the love of being a student persists. Jeannie has over a decade of experience in project management and data analysis - in several industries and Forbes Fortune 500 companies.

When not at work, Jeannie is often globetrotting, studying some new interest, appreciating the creative style of others in a museum or gallery, or attending a concert of eclectic types with her husband. Jeannie is currently working towards completing a Project Management Professional (PMP) certification and is a Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) - Project Management candidate.

Education and Credentials: Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies (B.A.Com.), a Master of Business Administration (MBA) specializing in Project Management, and several Lean Six Sigma (LSS) certifications are treasured learning experiences so far.

Karen Caputo, MLIS
Instruction & Design Librarian

Karen Caputo joined the library team in October 2017. Karen’s work involves providing learning materials to assist students, faculty, and staff in both in-person and online environments. In this role, she helps students develop and enhance their learning and research skills, as well as their use of library resources and tools.

Karen holds a Master’s of Library & Information Science from Kent State University and a BA in English from The Ohio State University.

Library Liaison areas: Accounting, Business Economics, Business Forensics, Energy Management, Financial Management, Financial Planning, Forensic Accounting, Marketing, and Marketing & Communication

Christopher Casey, MLIS
Public Services and Outreach Librarian

Christopher Casey joined the library team in December 2014. Christopher’s work involves planning and promoting events and services provided by the Learning Commons. He also manages the Learning Commons space, ensuring a welcoming environment. In addition, Christopher provides assistance in the navigation and use of library resources and tools.

Christopher graduated with a B.A. English Literature from Heidelberg University and his Master of Library and Information Science from Kent State University. In his free time, he enjoys traveling, hiking, reading, gaming, and trapeze (seriously!).

Librarian Liaison Areas: Applied Management, Business Administration, Internet Marketing, Human Resource Management, Logistics, MBA, Management and Leadership, Operations and Supply Chain Management

Amy Dalrymple
Content Editor

Amy Dalrymple earned her Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from The Ohio State University. Before arriving at Franklin, she was a freelance writer and editor for print and web publications. As an editor on the Franklin team, Amy has helped edit and build courses for Franklin University students and a diverse array of external clients in the U.S. and abroad.

Alyssa Darden, MLIS
Director Learning and Library Resources

Alyssa Darden joined the library team in September 2013 as the Reference and Assessment Librarian, and became the Director of the Library in December 2015. Alyssa’s work involves leading the library to fulfillment of its strategic plan with vision, supportive relationships with faculty and staff, and commitment to making the library a leading enabler of the University's academic strategies.

Alyssa holds a Master’s of Library & Information Science from Kent State University and a BA in English from Wright State University.

Jesse Fuhrman, MA
Instructional Design Faculty

Jesse Fuhrman earned his Master of Arts in Technologies of Instruction and Media from The Ohio State University. He also holds a Master of Arts in Anthropology from Eastern New Mexico University and a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and Music History from Dickinson College. Jesse’s background in anthropology and studying human behavior has had a significant impact on his experience in teaching and course design.

Before arriving at Franklin, Jesse worked on course design and training projects for the Department of Anthropology and Applied Archaeology at ENMU, the Department of Anthropology, International Programs Office, and the College of Food, Agriculture, and Environmental Sciences at OSU, as well as for TreinaLink in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

At Franklin, Jesse has designed courses for the university as well as many outside partners, including Saudi Electronic University, Supreme Court of Ohio Judicial College, Urbana University, Ashland Theological Seminary, the Ohio Soybean Council, and Nationwide Insurance.

Joel Gardner, Ph.D.
Assistant Dean, Instructional Design

Dr. Gardner is currently an instructional designer and department chair for the International Institute for Innovative Instruction at Franklin University. He began his career as a corporate trainer for a large financial services organization. Realizing his interest in effective training and instructional design, he pursued an MS and PhD in Instructional Technology and Learning Sciences at Utah State University. He has also worked as an Instructional Designer at Utah State in the Faculty Assistance Center for Teaching.

As a scholar, Dr. Gardner has published several peer-reviewed articles on the effective use of instructional strategies in a variety of settings. He has taught at the graduate level at several institutions of higher education. Dr. Gardner recently received the Robert L. Bailey Graduate Teaching Award at Franklin University and has received many other awards and recognitions.

Hannah Goodrick
Access Services Manager

Hannah Goodrick joined the library team in November 2017 as the Access Services Manager. Hannah manages the circulation desk and leads a team of student library staff. She is the forefront of student, faculty, and staff communications during our afternoon and evening hours. Hannah holds a Bachelor of Science in Education from Ohio University.

Niccole Hyatt, Ph.D.
Executive Director of Design Services

Niccole Hyatt leads a team of professionals to develop instructional design and learning interventions for academic institutions, governmental entities, and corporations (domestic and international). Dr. Hyatt has served at Franklin University in multiple instructional design roles since 2003.

Niccole’s professional experience outside of the academy includes over twelve years in wireless telecommunications, primarily with AT&T where she led training development efforts that affected over 30,000 employees nationwide. In addition, Dr. Hyatt has also served as a Leadership and Organizational Development Consultant for The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center where she directed all non-clinical training efforts for approximately 17,000 employees, to include the staff satisfaction and engagement survey.

Dr. Hyatt earned her Ph.D. in Technology Management from Indiana State University, a B.S. in Education from The Ohio State University, and an M.S. in Instructional Technology from Georgia State University.

Marc Jaffy, JD, MLIS
Acquisitions Librarian

Marc Jaffy joined the library in July, 2017 as the Acquisitions Librarian. He is responsible for administering the library's purchase of resources, including books, ebooks, databases and other content necessary to meet our patrons' research needs.

Marc holds a JD from Northwestern University School of Law, a Master’s of Library & Information Science from Kent State University, and a BA in Mathematical Methods in the Social Sciences / Political Science from Northwestern University

Library Liaison Areas: Allied Healthcare Management, Criminal Justice Administration, Healthcare Administration, Healthcare Information Management, Nursing, Public Administration, Public Safety Management, Safety and Homeland Security

Natalya Koehler, Ph.D.
Instructional Design Faculty

Dr. Natalya Koehler is an instructional design faculty at Franklin University in Columbus, OH. She received her doctoral degree from Iowa State University. Her skills range from designing online, hybrid, and face-to-face courses to guiding the development team on building interactive web-based courseware.

She likes building templates for rapid e-learning design and development, teaching instructional and multimedia instructional design to graduate and undergraduate students, designing and conducting rapid prototyping and pilot testing of the designed materials through surveying and tracking technology.

Her research interests include Design research on effective and efficient methods for teaching face-to-face, hybrid and online classes. She builds courseware that collects information on its use. The data collection instruments are embedded in the design. As recognition of this effort, she received 2011 AECT Research and Theory Division, Outstanding Journal Article Award.

Jessie Kong, Ph.D.
Instructional Design Faculty

Younghee Jessie Kong is the instructional design faculty of International Institute for Innovate Instruction and professor for the M.S. program in Instructional Design and Performance Technology (IDPT) at Franklin University. She earned her Ph.D. degree in the Workforce Development and Education program at The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio.

Her research interests lie primarily in the area of Workforce Development and Education, focusing on Instructional Design, Online Learning, and Assessment and Evaluation:

Applying learning theories to instructional systems design,
Designing and developing undergraduate and graduate level courses in a variety of learning formats,
Designing and developing instructional multimedia integrating a variety of instructional methodologies and techniques,
Assessing and evaluating training programs or courses (specialization: cost benefit analysis of courses and programs),
Conducting performance analyses for individual and organizational performance improvement.

Greg Kurtz
Production Coordinator

Greg holds a Bachelor of Arts in History from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio and is resuming his studies toward a master’s degree in Business Psychology at Franklin University. Before starting at Franklin in 2013, he spent 18 years in broadcast media as on-air talent and 6 years spearheading a variety of innovative K–8 programs for a leading educational publisher. Since joining Franklin, Greg has helped produce hundreds of courses for both internal and external clients while also serving as video and audio talent for various university multimedia presentations

Marivic Lesho, Ph.D.
Content Editor

Marivic Lesho is a content editor for the International Institute for Innovative Instruction. She earned her PhD in linguistics from the Ohio State University. Before coming to Franklin, she was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Bremen, specializing in dialectal variation in American and Philippine English as well as other Philippine languages. She also has experience in teaching linguistic methods and theory, editing academic publications, and working as a freelance editor. As part of the i4 team, she edits courses and provides LMS support to Franklin students and faculty as well as working on projects for external clients.

Carolyn LeVally
Content Editor Manager

Carolyn LeVally is a content editor for Franklin University's International Institute for Innovative Instruction. She received her Bachelor's degree in Professional Writing and Literature from Ohio Northern University. Prior to joining the Franklin team, Carolyn edited for a leading educational publisher and wrote grant applications for a county board of developmental disabilities. As an editor at Franklin University, Carolyn has helped develop courses in the learning management system; she has also, in a team environment, developed dozens of interactive instructional multimedia courses, where she served as the graphic designer and audio talent.

Kristi Lobrano, MLIS
Systems Librarian

Kristi Lobrano joined the Franklin University Nationwide Library in September 2011 as the Systems Librarian. In this role, she administers the Library’s integrated library systems and discovery tools to facilitate library operations and to provide access to information resources. In addition to managing systems, she is energized by patrons’ rapidly changing information needs and technology skills, the opportunities regarding providing library services to these patrons, and the integration of mobile technologies into library services. Beginning in 2017, she serves as the Systems Librarian for Franklin University and Urbana University.

Kristi holds a Master’s of Library & Information Science from Louisiana State University and a BS in Psychology/Sociology from Louisiana State University.

Library Liaison areas: Computer Science (undergraduate, graduate), Information Security, Information Technology, Interactive Media Design, Management Information Sciences, Web Development and more as listed in the library liaison information guide.

Trent McMahon
Content Editor

Trent McMahon is a content editor for the International Institute for Innovative Instruction. He received his Bachelor’s degree in English and Creative Writing from the University of Iowa, with a designation in nonfiction writing. Before Franklin, Trent worked as a developmental- and copy-editor for a startup editing company, and has held roles in search engine optimization and journalism. As an editor at Franklin, Trent edits and inputs course materials across multiple platforms, and works alongside the team to deliver quality courses both internally and to external clients across the globe.

Adam Monk, MA
Interactive Media Specialist

With over 20 years of experience in the audio and video production field, Adam is passionate about working with people to realize their vision for their media project. In addition to working at Franklin University, Adam enjoys working with local artists, producing music and video as well as post-production audio for film/video. He also regularly contributes articles for an audio production magazine distributed internationally.

Adam earned his Masters degree in Communications from The Ohio State University where he researched how people discover new media through online social media and word of mouth communications. He also earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Ohio University where he studied Audio and Video production.

Adam serves as an Interactive Multimedia Specialist where he is responsible for the creation of video, audio and interactive media to support the mission and vision of Franklin University.

Xiaopeng David Ni, Ph.D.
Instructional Design Faculty

Dr. David Ni is currently an instructional design faculty member at Franklin University. His primary research interest is the intersection of design perspectives and emerging technologies to optimize teaching, learning, and educational leadership. He has participated in a broad range of funded research projects including training for emergency population protection, pathways to bilingualism, using mobile technology to improve student success and retention.

Dr. Ni has also made numerous presentations and published various articles on instructional design and educational leadership in the digital age. He consults regularly with businesses and organizations on strategic planning and innovation. Dr. Ni actively promotes international connection and collaboration. Dr. Ni is a master reviewer of the nationally recognized program: Quality Matters (QM). He serves on editorial board of International Journal of Social Media and Interactive Learning Environment (IJ-SMILE), and the program committee of the United Kingdom’s Association of Learning Technology (ALT). He is also a board member of Chinese School Association in the United States (CSAUS).

Dr. Ni received his PhD in Instructional Technology from the University of Georgia in 2007, and his MS in Educational Technology from East China Normal University in 2002. Prior to joining Franklin University, Dr. Ni spent two years as a Senior Instructional Designer at Cleveland State University and three years as an eLearning Research Associate at Michigan State University. Before he came to the U.S., he was a faculty member of educational technology at Suzhou University in China.

Roberta Niche, M.Ed.
Instructional Designer

Roberta Niche earned her Masters in Education (Instructional Technology) from California State University, Sacramento. She also holds a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. She was a credentialed teacher in California and Texas and has 25 years of experience in classroom teaching and in leading staff development. Prior to her career as an educator, Roberta was an officer in the United States Navy where her assignments included directing training for a 400 person aviation squadron.

Roberta joined Franklin University in 2014. She has designed courses for numerous clients, including Saudi Electronic University, Urbana University, Al Baha University, Nationwide, and The Columbus Council on World Affairs. Her professional interests include critical thinking, collaborative learning, authentic assessment, and information literacy.

Meghan B. Raehll, Ph.D.
Assistant Dean, Center for Teaching Excellence

Dr. Raehll serves as the Assistant Dean of the Center for Teaching Excellence. Primary research interests include: Metaphysics; Philosophy of Technology; Philosophy of Cognitive Science/Learning Theories, and the conceptual spaces between. Dr. Raehll also enjoys research related to transnational teaching excellence, data analytics, and embraces constructivist approaches as a primary paradigm for student-centered learning.

Matt Rundell
Interactive Media Specialist

Matt Rundell earned a bachelor of arts in Film Studies from Wayne State University. Since graduation, Matt has worked for and with Turner Broadcast, Cartoon Network, Disney Television, Teacher’s Discovery and finally Franklin University. At Franklin Matt serves as an Interactive Multimedia Specialist creating videos, interactive games and supplemental media for courses and clients.

Kevin Stoker
Director, Implementation Services

Kevin Stoker provides project management and governance of all course design within the Institute while also managing its overall project portfolio. Kevin has served Franklin University since 2006.

Kevin’s professional experience outside of Franklin University includes 5 years of managing the Student Services team at Hondros College, where he led a team of advisors and administrators to help students achieve licensure in healthcare, finance, and real estate.

Kevin earned his Bachelor’s degree in Communications at The Ohio State University.

Yuerong Sweetland, Ph.D.
Director of Teaching & Learning Assessment

Dr. Yuerong manages the design, collection, evaluation and reporting of data and information required for general education assessment and program assessment at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Dr. Sweetland joined Franklin University in 2005 as the Assessment Coordinator. She was also the lead faculty of two writing courses from 2007 to 2008.

Dr. Sweetland graduated from the College of Education at The Ohio State University with specializations in research methods, evaluation and measurement in education. Before joining Franklin in 2005, she worked at Capital University as the Assessment Analyst. Prior to becoming a higher education assessment professional, she worked as an ESL teacher in both China and the U.S.

Elisha Teague, MA
Assistant Director, Learning Resources at the Learning Commons

Elisha Teague joined the Student Learning Center team in November 2012 as the Learning Resources and Lab Coordinator, and became the Assistant Director, Learning Resources at the Learning Commons in August 2016.

Elisha is responsible for the planning and implementation of Franklin’s academic support programs (tutoring, Structured Learning Assistance and workshops). In this role, she helps empower students to become independent lifelong learners.

In addition to working in the Learning Commons, Elisha is also serves as Lead Faculty for the Communications 020, Communications 025 and Professional Foundations 121 courses.

Elisha’s holds a Master’s of Arts in Education and a BA in Theatre from The Ohio State University.

Constance Wanstreet, Ph.D.
Title III Project Coordinator

Dr. Wanstreet is the coordinator of Franklin's Title III project, a five-year federal grant designed to increase undergraduate retention and graduation. She teaches instructional design and adult learning theory at Franklin and The Ohio State University. She received her Ph.D. in workforce development and adult education from Ohio State and has presented at international and national conferences, primarily on how adults learn in online environments. Dr. Wanstreet has been recognized for instructional design innovation by the National University Technology Network and for teaching excellence by Franklin University.

Yi Yang, Ph.D.
Chair, Doctor of Professional Studies Program

Dr. Yi Yang holds a PhD in Instructional Systems and Workforce Development from Mississippi State University, a MA in Technology and Learning and a BA in TESL (Teaching English as Second Language).

Her research interests include quality of online education; online teaching and learning effectiveness; participatory learning; Web 2.0 and emerging learning technologies; Web-based training and teaching; blended/hybrid learning; computer supported collaborative learning; online learning communities; collaborative instructional design.

Prior to joining Franklin, she has taught undergraduate educational technology courses at Mississippi State University.