Thursday, May 5th, 2022


Education Benefits

Meet with representatives from 25 academic institutions



Join our presentations to hear about many of the important topics facing federal employees

Thank you for your interest in the Spring 2022 Federal Government Virtual Education & Professional Development Symposium!. The schools represented in this event are all members of the Office of Personnel Management’s (OPM) Federal Academic Alliance.

At this interactive virtual event, you will have the opportunity to meet representatives from each of the schools and attend webinars at no cost. Plus, be sure to visit the Networking area, to connect with colleagues and like-minded professionals.


Federal employees and their families (spouses and dependents)

Veterans in the federal government

Event Objectives:

Inform federal employees and their families about the benefits available through the Federal Academic Alliance

Provide learning opportunities through forums and workshops

Support career development for Federal employees

Provide information for Federal employees to obtain college degrees/certificates and/or college credit

Discuss mission-critical topics

About the Federal Academic Alliance

OPM created the Federal Academic Alliance in 2014 to assist the federal government in addressing critical skills gaps. Today, the alliance has grown to include 27 colleges and universities from across the country. Each of these schools offers benefits to federal employees, spouses, and dependents to advance their education.

For more information about the Federal Academic Alliance, please visit Federal Academic Alliance email:


May 5, 2022

9:00 AM

Exhibit Hall Opens - Visit the school booths to learn more about the benefits available for you

9:00 AM - 3:55 PM

Break out sessions (Sessions are concurrent)

Time Concurrent 1 Concurrent 2 Concurrent 3 Concurrent 4
9:00 am -10:00 am

Southern New Hampshire University
The "Big 8" Social Identities in the Workplace

This presentation will focus on Social Identities within a Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging (DEI&B) lens and how to leverage the perceptions and experiences of others in the workplace.

Hosted by:

Dr. Kendra Thomas

Dr. Kendra Thomas was born and raised in Long Beach, California, but has deep roots in Louisiana, Arkansas, and Mexico. She is also a military veteran, having served 7 years in the U.S. Army and a military spouse of 21 years. Kendra has lived across the country, ranging from Hawaii to North Carolina, due to her military ties - her final home is in Florida with her husband and two boys, ages 8 and 20. She found her way into the world of higher education a decade ago as a director of career services and placement with one of Lawton/Fort Sill’s local colleges. As a Global Career Development Facilitator and Hawkeye Certified Veteran Development Coach, Dr. Thomas is passionate about finding solutions to support underserved and marginalized people. She accomplishes this goal by developing tools that provide awareness to enlighten and encourage others to persist along their life’s journeys.

Columbia College
Federal Loan Repayment and Public Service Loan Forgiveness

Overview of federal student loan repayment options and a dive into the details of the public service loan forgiveness program

Hosted by:

Candice Shea

Candice Shea recently celebrated her third anniversary as the Project Analyst at Columbia College and is entering her 9th year in Higher Education Finance. Candice also recently began her studies for the MBA program at CC. Candice earned her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Missouri St. Louis (MO).

Tony Hoos

Tony Hoos is in his first-year work as a financial aid specialist for Columbia College. Prior to this he worked for six years as an escalation specialist for MOHELA, a federal student loans service provider. During this time he assist many federal student loan holders with loan management and the Public Service Lan Forgiveness program.

Robert H. Smith School of Business University of Maryland
Studying the Business of Technology

A discussion with experts on government and private sector trends in job requirements and academic approaches at the intersection of business and technology.

Hosted by:

Frank Goertner, MBA

Frank Goertner is the Director for Federal and Veteran Affairs and Program Director of Technology Management Programs at the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business. A retired naval officer, his research and professional interests focus on implications of technological disruption on national security industries, government organizations, and mission-oriented workforces. He is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and holds a Masters in International Relations and MBA from the University of Maryland.

Joseph Bailey, PhD

Dr. Joe Bailey is the Assistant Dean for Specialty Undergraduate Programs and Academic Director of Technology Management Programs at the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business. His research and teaching interests span issues in telecommunications, economics, and public policy with an emphasis on the economics of the Internet. This area includes an identification of the existing public policies, technologies, and market opportunities that promote the benefits of interoperability. He holds a PhD in Technology Management and Policy from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Judy Frels, PhD

Dr. Judy Frels is a Senior Fellow for Executive Development and Clinical Professor of Marketing at the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business. She teaches marketing strategy, marketing management, and ethical leadership as well action learning projects and the capstone integrative business course at the graduate levels. From 2014 through 2019, she also directed Smith's Online MBA program to it's ranking among the top 10 in the U.S. She holds a PhD in Marketing from the University of Texas at Austin."

Saint Mary's University of Minnesota
Development in Today's World

How to be successful and stand out from the rest.

Hosted by:

Michael Ratajczyk

Michael has been a professor at Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota for eight years and the program director for their Business Intelligence and Data Analytics degree programs at the bachelor's and master’s level. He also leads graduate certificates in business analytics, healthcare analytics, supply chain analytics, and artificial intelligence. Michael is currently pursuing his PhD in Artificial Intelligence with a concentration on supply chain management. LinkedIn:

10:00 am- 11:00 am

Villanova University
Engaging Employees Hearts and Passions

An organization can only achieve its potential if all employees are united to achieve its collective mission. Today’s employees want meaningful work, where they feel they are part of something bigger than themselves. This session will focus on how leaders can help encourage a culture where there are values and a mission that intrinsically motivate all employees to passionately pursue the organization’s goals – mind, body and soul.

Hosted by:


Marv Meissner is a Quality and Training Executive with nearly 40 years’ corporate experience in leadership roles within manufacturing, transactional, and administrative environments,. Marv possesses a strong background with specialties in: Leadership, Lean Six Sigma, Total Quality, Continuous Improvement, Change Management, and Training In Villanova University’s College of Professional Studies, Marv is a Professor of the Practice who teaches within both the credit and non-credit programs, as well as providing customized training for corporations. Credit courses include a number of different leadership and organizational development and management courses. Non-credit courses are focused in the Lean Six Sigma program area.
Marv earned a Bachelor Degree in Chemical Engineering from Clarkson University and a Master’s in Business Administration from Syracuse University.

Penn State
Improving Group Dynamics for Increased Productivity

The global pandemic, caused by Covid-19, has forced many people to work from home. Yet few managers have been given training on how to manage work-from-home employees, and fewer still have been given special training on how to encourage group dynamics and group interaction among virtual work groups or work teams. Join William J. Rothwell, Ph.D., SPHR, SHRM-SCP, CPLP Fellow, Professor Workforce Education and Development, Penn State University for this discussion. Upon completion, participants can:
· Define virtual group coaching
· Describe the characteristics of highly productive virtual groups
· Summarize how to facilitate more effective interaction among work-from-home employee groups
· Discuss a model that can guide implementation of a virtual group coaching effort
· Evaluate how well a small group or team is working together and identify ways to intervene to improve group interaction to get more effective work results from a team

Hosted by:

William J. Rothwell, Ph.D

William J. Rothwell, Ph.D., SPHR, SHRM-SCP, CPLP Fellow, Professor of Learning and Performance in the Workforce Education and Development program, Department of Learning and Performance Systems at The Pennsylvania State University, University Park campus, and co-director of the Master of Professional Studies in Organization Development and Change at Penn State World Campus. Rothwell has authored, co-authored, edited, or co-edited 300 books, book chapters, and articles-including 127 books in 7 languages. Before arriving at Penn State in 1993, he had nearly 20 years of work experience as a Training Director and HR professional in government and in a multinational business. Rothwell’s most recent books include Virtual Coaching to Improve Group Relationships: Process Consultation Reimagined (CRC/Productivity Press, 2021); Organization Development Interventions: Executing Effective Organizational Change (Routledge, 2021); Increasing Learning and Development’s Impact Through Accreditation (Palgrave, 2020); Adult Learning Basics, 2nd ed. (ATD Press, 2020); Workforce Development: Guidelines for Community College Professionals (Rowman-Littlefield, 2020); Human Resource Essentials for Small Business and Startups (Society for Human Resource Management, 2020).

Rosemont College
Fundamentals of Cybersecurity

Have you ever wondered why information security is essential in any business or organization? According to Cybersecurity Ventures, cybercrime in the US alone exceeded $6trillion in 2021. What defines these costs? it includes stolen or the destruction of data, stolen money, stolen identity and the list goes on. It is organized crime on any individual that is working online making information security, everyone's business.

Hosted by:

Ric Messier

Ric Messier (GCIH, GSEC, CEH, CISSP) is a consultant, educator, and author of many books on information security and digital forensics. With decades of experience in information technology and information security, Ric has held the varied roles of programmer, system administrator, network engineer, security engineering manager, VoIP engineer, consultant, and professor. In this session, Ric will cover the fundamentals of information security and what every company, organization should know but are afraid to hear how it can affect them.

Georgetown University Bio
Understanding People, Teams, and Change Management

This presentation will address individual values, group norms, and organizational culture and their roles in change management. It will also introduce the top four change management models.

Hosted by:

Bryan O. Buckley
DrPH, MPH and Carole Hemmelgarn, MS, MS

Bryan O. Buckley, DrPH, MPH is a health equity-focused and systems-oriented leader in health delivery system redesign, performance improvement, and change management. Currently, Dr. Buckley is a Fellow with Medstar Health Institute for Quality and Safety (MIQS), where he leads and supports healthcare delivery research, education, and consulting related to community health, patient safety, and quality. An Assistant Professor at the Georgetown University School of Medicine, Dr. Buckley teaches in the Georgetown Executive Masters’ in Clinical Quality, Safety & Leadership. Dr. Buckley holds a Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health focused on management, strategy, leadership, and organizational change. In addition to his DrPH, he holds a Bachelor of Science degree (BS) in Microbiology from Michigan State University and a Master of Public Health (MPH) from Michigan State University’s College of Human Medicine. He is certified in TeamSTEPPS, Change Management, Facilitative Leadership, and Coaching. He is a Board Member of the American Heart Association of Greater Washington, DC, and Executive Board Member of the American Public Health Association.

Carole Hemmelgarn

Carole Hemmelgarn, MS, MS, is the Director for the Executive Master’s program for Clinical Quality, Safety & Leadership at Georgetown University, and the Senior Director Education for the MedStar Institute for Quality & Safety. Carole graduated from Colorado State University with a degree in Speech Communication. She received a master’s degree in Patient Safety Leadership from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and a second master’s degree in Health Care Ethics from Creighton University. Hemmelgarn is involved in patient safety work across the country. She sits on the Leapfrog Patient & Family Caregiver Expert Panel, Board of Quality, Safety and Experience at Children’s Hospital Colorado, Clinical Excellence Council for Colorado Hospital Association, ABIM Foundation, Patient Advisory Committee and the Board of Directors for the Collaborative for Accountability and Improvement.

11:00 am- Noon

University of Louisville
Digital Transformation – How to Up-Skill or Re-Skill

Hosted by:

Ashley Triplett

Ashley works in workforce development, technology transformation, and cultivating a culture of lifelong learners. She currently holds an appointment at the Digital Transformation Center where she is the Innovation and Training Strategist at the University of Louisville. Her educational background includes M.A (2018) of Cultural Anthropology and MA-HEA (2021) of Higher Education Administration and is currently in her Doctoral program with the College of Education in Educational Leadership and Organization Development. Her academic research interests are in human cognitive processes and understanding how humans and machines process information, obtain knowledge, and ultimately, learn

Purdue Global University
Major League Leaders Playbook - Key Strategies for Success

Dr. Rebecca Herman will take you on a journey through Major League Baseball clubhouses and dugouts where she spent two years interviewing over 100 managers, players, and executives to learn what makes them successful at the most elite level of their sport and how you can apply their approaches to your role.
· Discover the importance of always leading yourself first and how you can effectively lead by example, earn the respect of those around you, and share your passion.
· Learn how to successfully lead others by cultivating relationships, supporting others, and communicating effectively.
· Prepare to lead the game and achieve goals by fostering teamwork, creating a winning culture, and ensuring you have the expertise to excel.
You will leave this webinar with a playbook of strategies to take your leadership to a championship level.

Hosted by:

Dr. Rebecca Herman

Rebecca Herman, PhD, teaches various graduate business courses, with a special emphasis on leadership and organization development. She oversees numerous innovations in curriculum and serves on the University’s special task forces and accreditation panels. Herman was a leader in human resources for nearly 20 years before transitioning to academia. She started her academic career at Purdue Global in 2005 as an academic department chair, then assistant dean of faculty, followed by interim dean and associate dean. Herman later returned to teaching full-time as an opportunity to reconnect with students and pursue research interests.
Dr. Herman has been cited for her expertise on leadership in Major League Baseball in publications such as CEO, The US Daily Review, and Society of American Baseball Research. Herman has also served as a keynote speaker where she shares findings from her book, Lead Me Out to the Ballgame. She and her co-author interviewed 20 MLB managers, spent time with 24 MLB teams, and interviewed over 100 MLB players to determine key factors for leadership success in MLB. Dr. Herman received the 2020 Purdue Online Excellence Award in Course Design and Teaching for the noncredit course, Take Me Out to the Ballgame: 150 Years.

Drexel University
Brief Overview of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Their Uses

The purpose of this webinar is introduce participants to Geographic Information Systems (GIS). It will provide examples of how GIS are used for managing and processing geographic data, mapping, analysis and visualization, as well as best practices. The webinar will also describe some of the most popular GIS software tools (both open source and commercial) and where to find data. Training resources where participants can seek more in-depth learning and experience with GIS will also be shared.
After completing this course, participants will be able to: Explain what are geographic data and a GIS
Describe ways that GIS can be used to solve real world problems
Identify popular GIS software options
Acquire spatial data relevant to area of interest
Identify where to gain additional training

Hosted by:

Alex Quistberg, PhD
MPH Assistant Research Professor, Environmental and Occupational Health, Urban Health Collaborative, Program Director Urban Health MPH

.Alex Quistberg is Assistant Research Professor in the Department of Environmental & Occupational Health at the Urban Health Collaborative in the Dornsife School of Public Health of Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA, USA. Dr. Quistberg was a postdoctoral fellow at the Harborview Injury Prevention & Research Center and obtained his PhD and MPH in Epidemiology from the University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA and his BA in Health & Societies from the University of Pennsylvania. He currently leads the BEPIDL (Built Environment, Pedestrians and Deep Learning) study, funded by the Fogarty International Center of the National Institutes of Health, USA and is co-investigator on the SALURBAL project, funded by The Wellcome Trust. His research focuses on urban and global health and road safety, particularly on measuring the built environment and policy evaluation. He is also Statistical Editor at the BMJ journal Injury Prevention.

Contract Managers are in Demand: Is it the Right Career Choice for you?

During the pandemic we all experienced first-hand the importance of good supply chain management. However, one aspect that is often overlooked in the supply chain is one of the first and most important steps - contract management. What makes a good contract manager and what is the outlook for the profession in the future? Join us for this interactive session to discuss those things and more. After all, contract management inevitably touches almost everything the federal workforce does on a daily basis.

Hosted by:

Dr. Jim Bryant, PhD

Dr. Bryant is a Collegiate Faculty and Director of Acquisitions and Supply Chain Management at the University of Maryland Global Campus. Dr. Bryant was a supply chain and acquisition professional during his entire 16+ year Air Force career and has been teaching in the supply chain and acquisition profession since 1997. After retiring from the Air Force, he became the CIO for the State of South Carolina. Jim is a life-long learner and believes education is the great advantage and success enabler in all walks of life. He resides in Virginia with his loving wife and dogs who all avidly cheer for Clemson football in the fall.

Noon- 1:00 pm

Florida Tech
STEM-powered manufacturing: using maker spaces to apply science outside of the classroom

Maker spaces are transforming libraries, community groups, and college campuses into places where you can apply science and design skills to create things for yourself and even start businesses with very little up-front costs. In this presentation you will learn about where to find these places and meet a few inspiring people who have built businesses and even their own vehicles using these super useful places.

Hosted by:

Jared Campbell
STEM Outreach Manager at Florida Tech’s Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Innovative Design (CAMID)

Jared Campbell is the STEM Outreach Manager at Florida Tech’s Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Innovative Design (CAMID). He has an Educational Specialist (Ed.S.) degree in STEM Education from Florida Tech, a master’s degree in Computer Information Systems also from Florida Tech, and a bachelor’s degree in Science Education from the University of Central Florida. Jared has been an award-winning instructor of science and technology education since 2002. Over the years, he has taught and designed countless lessons, mentored hundreds of teachers, developed a library-based Teacher Assistant Support Group, and has been a founding member of the Florida Tech Teaching Council. His experience and expertise have given him a unique perspective which allows him to continuously inspire and motivate his students. He is also the host of CAMID’s Make It Yourself podcast.

Purdue University
Data and Science Storytelling

Data & Science storytelling is about the story, not about the facts.
Storytelling is about violating expectations and providing unexpected solutions. All good stories surprise and at the end teach you something. Science does the same thing. Our science communication teaching method relies on the idea that because science always needs to confront misguided ideas and propose better future explanations, it is also storytelling-ready. The presentation will explain how this works. In anticipation of the conversation, take a look at the videos listed below"

Hosted by:

Dr. Sorin Adam Matei

Dr. Sorin Adam Matei is Associate Dean of Research and Graduate Education in the College of Liberal Arts and Professor of Communication in the Brian Lamb School of Communication. His research studies the relationship between information technology, group behavior, and social structures. He is known for spearheading innovative research projects on Wikipedia, social media cognition and emotion, and ethics in Big Data. He has been awarded numerous grants and has published nine books as well as dozens of journal articles in publications like The Journal of Communication and Communication Research.

Michigan State University
Stop Managing, Start Leading

Managers often assume that becoming of leader is simply a matter of doing more of what they already do. Moving up the career ladder, taking on more responsibility and commanding more people. Because they don’t know what they don’t know, they often fail to achieve or succeed in a leadership role. The reality is that what makes you a great manager is the opposite of what will make you a great leader. In this workshop we will (1) look at the differences between managers and leaders, (2) discuss specific actions you can take to develop a leadership mindset, (3) highlight key leadership skills you need to develop (4) identify self-defeating behaviors that can undermine your success and managing diversity in the workplace

Hosted by:

Dr. Richard Gooding
Assistant Professor, Michigan State University

Dr. Richard Gooding currently teaches two courses in the MS MSL Program: Strategic Decision Making and Leading Strategic Change. Over the last 25 years he has worked with a wide range of profit, non-profit and governmental organizations helping them develop and implement their strategic plan. He facilitates the strategic planning process and serves as a strategic coach to the leadership team, providing independent input and feedback on issues the organization and the leadership team face. Insights he gained from working with over a hundred organizations combined with his academic knowledge provide a unique and meaningful learning experience for those looking to be future leaders.

Dr. Roz Jaffer

Dr. Gooding received his PhD from Michigan State University. Prior to starting his consulting practice, he was on the faculty in the College of Business at Arizona State University where he taught courses in strategy and leadership. He also has as Master of Social Work (MSW) in Policy, Planning and Administration from Western Michigan University.

Park University
Almost Everything You Wanted to Know About Drones…But Were Afraid to Ask

In this webinar presentation you will discover how drones are fast becoming the force multiplier of choice in public safety; the free FAA endorsed training that will allow almost anyone to legally fly a drone; the key difference between a commercial Drone Service Provider (DSP) and a recreational flyer (this will save you money). You will learn the three free drone applications every good pilot uses and why and how practicing one simple flight maneuver with variations will take your piloting skills to the next level (…how to fly and not crash). You will also discover one of the most non-piloting skills every successful profession drone pilot requires.

Hosted by:

Dr. Eugene Matthews
Associate Professor of Criminal Justice and Program Coordinator for Criminal Justice

Dr. Matthews teaches a variety of graduate and undergraduate courses including Criminal Investigations, Criminology, Forensics, Criminal Justice Research Methods and more. He serves as the Program Coordinator for the Criminal Justice Department and engages with faculty across the university’s distributed network of 40+ campus centers. Dr. Matthews developed the sUAS Drone Applications Certificate and teaches the core courses. In addition to being an FAA Part 107 Certified Commercial Drone Pilot, he is also certified by Airborne Public Safety Association (APSA), National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) as a proctor for the Basic Proficiency Evaluation for Remote Pilots (BPERP).

1:00 pm- 2:00 pm

Bellevue University
Collaboration;10 tips that will have you knocking down virtual cubicles

Collaboration is so much more than just conversing. It’s about gathering input, discussing options and reaching consensus on what’s best for team outcomes. Collaboration is a skill that can help us all be more effective working together…especially now. As part of the Federal Government Education Fair, join us for this webinar packed with tips, tricks, and information geared to help you and your team excel in our virtual or hybrid work environments.

Hosted by:

Emily A. Redinbaugh, M.A
Department of Public Administration and Policy American University

Emily Redinbaugh is the Assistant Director, Strategic Partnerships for Bellevue University. With over twenty years of experience, Emily has worked with national corporations/organizations in providing learning programs to help employees gain industry and business-specific knowledge.
Emily’s experience spans the fields of marketing, adult education and human capital. Prior to her joining the Bellevue University team, she worked in the music and family entertainment arena as the Marketing Manager in Mankato, MN.
Currently, Emily directs and oversees Bellevue University’s content marketing strategies and campaigns in all Strategic Partnership Key Market Areas: Corporate Learning Solutions, Premier Partnership Network, International, and Government.
She develops and manages various strategic marketing campaigns for major partner accounts to evolve educational partnerships, develop new market service offerings and provide educational opportunities for these partner employees and members. She creates white papers, articles for publication, and professional presentations for team members and leadership. She also is an adjunct faculty member for the University.
Emily holds a M.A in Management from Bellevue University and a bachelor’s degree in Music Management from Luther College, Decorah, IA. In her free time, Emily can be found at her daughter Elanor’s (Nora),16 or son Nowell’s, 14, sports and school activities. She and her husband, Boyd, own The Simple Man, a men’s mercantile in Omaha. They love watching sporting events, spending time with friends and embarrassing the kids as often as possible.

Rosemont College
Seize The Moment

Seize The Moment - Dr. Mika Nash The data regarding employee satisfaction right now are not good. One in three workers feel disconnected from their work and from their leaders. 73% of employees are looking for other work, with one in four people leaving their jobs this past year and over 4 million employees quit their jobs each month, from September to December 2021, for a total of nearly 20 million people. Now, it is true that government workers typically stay in their positions nearly twice as long as private sector workers do, and that federal employees are, on average, older than private sector employees, which can have an effect on willingness to leave. That said, there is no denying that the pandemic has caused record numbers of people to re-evaluate their lives and to reconsider what brings them joy, what they are willing to sacrifice, and how they want to spend their lives. These ""pandemic epiphanies"" must be seen as a call for employers and leaders to find new ways to connect with the individuals who make up their teams, to forge meaningful relationships for people to feel seen and valued. ""Seize the Moment"" provides an opportunity to interrogate how we, as leaders, are responding to the Great Resignation, and how to shift toward helping to create spaces where people can feel engaged, creative, and invested in their work.

Hosted by:

Dr. Mika Nash

Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs
Rosemont’s new Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs is an experienced and innovative academic leader. Mika Nash, EdD most recently served as Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs at American International College. In that role, she was responsible for the operation, maintenance, and growth of the academic affairs side of a 3,000-student minority serving institution offering Associate, Baccalaureate, Master’s, and Doctoral level degrees, with almost 60% Pell eligible, first generation students, and a deep commitment to social justice and diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Dr. Nash earned her Doctor of Education degree in Higher Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, as well as both her Master of Arts and Bachelor of Arts degrees from the University of Vermont. Dr. Nash also holds a Post Baccalaureate 7-12 English certification.

Excelsior College
Cybersecurity and Homeland Security Emergency Management: Preparing the Workforce for Domestic and Global Needs

As the country and world experience more threats digitally and physically employees with homeland security emergency management and cybersecurity skills are in high demand within the field of public service. From careers in criminal justice and national security to homeland security and emergency management, and public administration, cybersecurity skills are a critical need in both the private and public sectors. Explore how these fields are overlapping to redefine what homeland and national security are; what skills are needed for the future of the workforce; what are industry leaders gleaning from the environment that could benefit government training managers and front-line forces. Panelists will include leaders from both academia in homeland security and cybersecurity as well as cybersecurity industry experts.

Hosted by:

Dr. Sharon Jumper
Cybersecurity Learning Architect, Focal Point Academy

Dr. Sharon Jumper is the Cybersecurity Learning Architect at Focal Point Academy. In this role, Dr. Jumper manages enterprise and academic partnerships, develops competency-based courses and programs, and conducts needs assessments related to cybersecurity for workforce development in both the public and private sectors. Dr. Jumper’s areas of subject matter expertise in cybersecurity focus on governance, risk management, and compliance. She has worked in Signals Intelligence Operations for the U.S. Army’s Intelligence and Security Command and the National Security Agency. Her career experience also includes work as an attorney in civil and criminal litigation. She has held faculty and academic leadership appointments at several universities in the United States, Argentina, Spain, the United Arab Emirates, and China.

Dr. Ramano-Arnold
Director of Business Development, Excelsior College

Dr. Romano-Arnold has served in the field of higher education for over 20 years, focusing much of her career to changing traditional college practices to better serve the needs of community college transfer students and working adult students. She has created model programs to remove barriers and increase success for transfer students. In addition, Dr. Romano-Arnold has focused on creating a holistic approach to serving veteran, military, and military spouse students through industry-related partnerships that serve both the educational and career needs for these student populations. She joined the Excelsior College team of Strategic Partnerships and Alliances in 2015 where she works specifically with government, veteran, and corporate partnerships. Julian Smith is the Director of Cyber Programs for Focal Point’s workforce development practice, Focal Point Academy. He is a Computer Scientist by training with almost 20 years of experience in cyber defense and cybersecurity training. He has worked with both the U.S. and British governments in cyber defense, taught as a full-time instructor, and has led instructor and curriculum development teams responsible for producing and delivering cutting-edge, hands-on cyber skills training for both public and private sector clients. He is now responsible for building programmatic approaches to cyber workforce development that include role-based assessments, framework and pipeline mapping, training programs, sustainment and validation activities, and more.

Julian Smith
Director of Cyber Programs, Focal Point Academy

Gretchen Schmidt is the faculty program director overseeing the associate in criminal justice, bachelor’s in criminal justice, and master’s in criminal justice programs and the graduate cannabis control certificate program at Excelsior College. As a para-academic, she combines criminal justice and legal experience with her passion for learning to create engaging and rigorous courses and programs.

Gretchen Schmidt
Faculty Program Director of Criminal Justice and Cannabis Control Programs at Excelsior College

Schmidt has previously worked as program director and associate professor at the Center for Law and Justice at Chancellor University in Cleveland, Ohio, adjunct professor at BGSU Firelands College in Huron, Ohio, adjunct professor at Kaplan University in Davenport, Iowa, and adjunct professor at Tiffin University in Tiffin, Ohio.Schmidt is a member of the America Bar Association, American Criminal Justice Society, Criminal Justice Educators Association of New York, and the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

American University
Kindness for the Next Normal

Things do not look as they were before, and they’ll never be the same again. Our government workforce now requires leaders with a much different focus. Federal leaders meanwhile, are faced with more organizational complexity than ever before, with less time and fewer resources, and a hybrid workplace that creates its own challenges. Our single most effective means to success lies not in detailed strategic planning or flawlessly executed programs, rather in the environments we create as leaders. Kindness is a simple and intentional act that inspires drive and commitment. This session focuses on the science of how kindness can be used to influence others, stimulate creativity, and create psychological safety in the federal workplace.

Hosted by:

Dr Malone
Department of Public Administration and Policy American University

Patrick is the Director, Key Executive Leadership Programs at American University. He is a frequent guest lecturer on kindness, gratitude, emotional intelligence, compassion, ethics, mindfulness, and leadership at various organizations, professional associations, and universities including the Fulbright Scholars Program. His research and teaching interests include human motivation, kindness, leadership, ethics, and organizational behavior. He is also one of the few researchers in the country certified in the Subject/Object Methodology developed at Harvard. is a retired Navy Captain. While in the Navy, Patrick served in a number of leadership and policy roles including as a professor of biometrics and preventive medicine at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences; Academic Director; and Dean of Academics for Navy Medicine. His most recent publications include: The Way Leaders Think, The Trusting Leader, Selfies in the Workplace, Kindness and Survival of the Fittest, Go Ahead, Laugh – Why Humor Makes for a Better Workplace, and VulnerABILITY - Can Managers Benefit from Extreme Exposure? His TED Talk, Thinking about Time, is available at and his co-edited book, The Handbook of Federal Leadership and Administration, was published in November 2016. His coauthored book Leading with Love and Laughter – Letting Go and Getting Real at Work was released in Spring 2021. His new book Emotional Intelligence in Talent Development was released in October 2021.

2:00 pm- 3:00 pm

Champlain College
Women in Leadership: Cultivating Emerging Talent

Leading others effectively begins first with knowing yourself. Sharpen your leadership performance by uncovering your personal strengths and discover your unique skills and strengths as a leader, will help you foster awareness for how best to lead others.
Leadership is not a solo endeavor. The cultivation and sustainability of supportive and collaborative relationships are key to any successful leadership journey. Women’s leadership journeys in particular have been shown to be positively impacted through having a strong supportive network.
Learn more about how leading diverse teams is one of the hallmarks of leadership. From giving and receiving feedback, to managing conflicts effectively, women leaders are experiencing unique gendered dynamics as they work to lead teams.

Hosted by:

Nicole Morris

Nicole Morris is an Associate Professor and Interim Associate Dean at Champlain College and has dedicated her life to a career of service through teaching and other community outreach. She holds an undergraduate degree in Accounting from Siena College and earned a master’s degree in Business Administration from Marist University. As a certified public accountant (CPA) and Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA), Nicole has been recognized on both the national and local stages. On a national level, she was selected as one of 28 young professionals from across the country to attend the inaugural AICPA leadership academy in the summer of 2009 and continues her commitment to the AICPA today. In 2017, Professor Morris received two local honors. She was recognized by Vermont Business Magazine as a Rising Star and was honored as a Woman to Watch by the Vermont State Society of CPAs.

Nicole is currently pursuing her PhD in Management from Saint Mary’s University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, focused on sustainability, certification, and small-to-medium sized businesses

Johnna Herrick-Phelps

Dr. Johnna Herrick-Phelps is the Vice President of Champlain College Online. Before coming to Champlain College, she was the Vice Provost for Academic Affairs at Granite State College. She has served in the field of higher education for twenty-four years in both faculty and administrative positions. In addition to her work in higher education, she was also the principal of JH Phelps & Associates Consulting. During this time she worked with public and private organizations in the areas of leadership development, workforce development, change management, and strategic planning.

Drexel University
How to Embrace an Intrapreneurial Mindset

Today's workforce is the most agile in history. Uncertainty and constant change during the pandemic have created a resilient corp, prepared for the changes to come. Managers and Supervisors bear the burden of this agility with constant changes to policies and culture, requiring creativity in redesigning how to support their team. Resilience and creativity are two of many skills and traits that are required by a workforce in companies of the future. In this session, we will recognize the importance of an intrapreneurial mindset for organizational growth.

Hosted by:

Damian Salas
Associate Dean of Academic Partnerships Drexel University's Charles D. Close School of Entrepreneurship

Damian Salas is Associate Dean of Academic Partnerships at the Charles D. Close School of Entrepreneurship at Drexel University. Damian is the first faculty appointed to the Close School with a clinical focus on enterprise growth.
Damian has led multiple State Department-funded consulting projects, providing technical expertise on enterprise growth to international startups and incubators. Damian spent 23 years as a senior director in corporate Human Resources for large nonprofits in the Philadelphia region. He is the founding chair of the Philadelphia Alliance Workforce Domain. Damian led the human capital strategy and economic policy for over 30,000 employees spread over 50 member organizations.

Villanova University
The Role of Leader as Change Agent

Change is so pervasive that we now have a new word for it – Pivot. It is happening at an ever accelerating rate, and those who don’t embrace it on a personal or organizational level will find themselves left behind. Leaders at all levels of organizations are being asked to be ‘change agents’ without having the necessary tools or resources to do so. This session will focus on helping leaders understand why people resist change and ways to effectively overcome those barriers and become more successful.

Hosted by:


Marv Meissner is a Quality and Training Executive with nearly 40 years’ corporate experience in leadership roles within manufacturing, transactional, and administrative environments,. Marv possesses a strong background with specialties in: Leadership, Lean Six Sigma, Total Quality, Continuous Improvement, Change Management, and Training In Villanova University’s College of Professional Studies, Marv is a Professor of the Practice who teaches within both the credit and non-credit programs, as well as providing customized training for corporations. Credit courses include a number of different leadership and organizational development and management courses. Non-credit courses are focused in the Lean Six Sigma program area.
Marv earned a Bachelor Degree in Chemical Engineering from Clarkson University and a Master’s in Business Administration from Syracuse University.

3:00 pm- 4:00 pm  

Columbia College
Becoming A College Ready Student

Ask any questions you have about preparing to start college at any age. There are many assumptions that prevent potential students from enrolling in college. Leave those worries at the door and develop a new plan to enroll today.

Hosted by:

Rachel Smith

Rachel Smith is currently serving as the Director of Student Success & Project Director for the TRiO Educational Opportunity Center. She has worked at Columbia College for 11 years in various student support roles.

Southern New Hampshire University
Leading Change through Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence (EI) is the capacity to be aware of, control and express one's emotions and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically. It is vital for managing others effectively, and self-awareness is a core EI skill. In this webinar, you’ll learn how research backs up the benefits of self-awareness for managers, including more satisfied teams and higher productivity. You’ll take a brief self-assessment and discover how to support your current strengths and build up areas with room for improvement. This webinar combines theory and application and provides opportunities to apply self-awareness skills to common work scenarios. Be prepared to share your thoughts and analyze real-life scenarios. At the end, you’ll create a specific plan for applying these concepts in interactions with your team.

Hosted by:

Dr. Barb Lesniak
Senior Associate Dean, Social Sciences

Dr. Barb Lesniak as a Senior Associate Dean in Social Sciences at Southern New Hampshire University. She guided the redevelopment of the BA.PSY program, including an emphasis on Emotional Intelligence as one of five programmatic themes embedded through the core classes. She was previously a mental health counselor and has also worked in corporate training.

2pm - 4pm

Veterans & Spouses Hour
(Visit the booths to discuss veteran benefits from each school)


Exhibit Hall Closes
(Booth content will be available up to 30 days after the event)

Schools Attending