National Advisory Board

Laurette Blakey Foster, Professor & Director Center for Teaching Excellence - Prairie View A&M University

Dr. Foster is a senior Professor in the Mathematics Department at Prairie View A&M University where she serves as Director of the Center for Teaching Excellence. She also serves as the Executive Director for the National HBCU Faculty Development Network.

She has been a leader and mentor in curriculum design for mathematics courses. She serves on several leadership projects to increase the success of students in mathematics, including the Mathematics Association of America subcommittee on Curriculum Redesign of the First Two Years and Educational Testing Service in Princeton, NJ. In addition to her work as a mathematics educator and faculty developer, Dr. Foster plays an active role in accreditation on her campus.

Dr. Foster is active in her community serving as a member of the Houston Ensemble Theater Guild, Board member of the Pink Ribbons Project - In Motion against Breast Cancer and the Enrichment and Brotherhood of Northwest Youth (EBONY) organization.

Jillian Kinzie, Associate Director – Center for Postsecondary Research Indiana University

I am the Associate Director, Center for Postsecondary Research and the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) Institute, Indiana University School of Education. I conduct research and leads project activities on effective use of student engagement data to improve educational quality, and serve as senior scholar with the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA) project. I am a co-author of Assessment in Student Affairs (2016), Using Evidence of Student Learning to Improve Higher Education (2015), Student Success in College (2005/2010), and One Size Does Not Fit All: Traditional and Innovative Models of Student Affairs Practice (2008/2014). I am co-editor of New Directions in Higher Education and serve on the boards of the Washington Internship Institute, and the Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education. I received the Robert J. Menges Honored Presentation by the Professional Organizational Development (POD) Network in 2005 and 2011. I earned my PhD from Indiana University in higher education with a minor in women’s studies. Prior to this, I served on the faculty of Indiana University and coordinated the master’s program in higher education and student affairs. I also worked in academic and student affairs at Miami University and Case Western Reserve University.

Emily Lardner Ph.D, Vice President of Academic Affairs – Highline College

I believe deeply in the power of collaboration, and that teaching and learning are best accomplished through trusting relationships and teamwork. I am passionate about the role education can play in helping students find their voices and their paths. 

For over two decades, I had the privilege to work at the Washington Center, collaborating with colleagues at Evergreen, across Washington State, and nationally on projects aimed at improving student learning and student success. Through the summer institutes, campus consultations, conferences, and national projects, I met faculty and staff committed to making institutions work better for students, particularly students from groups historically underrepresented in higher education. I also taught as an adjunct faculty member in Evergreen’s Evening and Weekend Studies Program.

I am currently serving as the interim Vice President for Academic Affairs at Highline College. Prior to that, I had the opportunity to serve as the Vice President for Instruction at Grays Harbor College. Prior to coming to the Washington Center, I worked at the English Composition Board at the University of Michigan, including several years as the Associate Director for Writing Assessment. 

I earned an MA and PhD from the University of Michigan in English Language and Literature, and a BA from Augustana College in Illinois. 

Larry Roper, Professor, School of Language, Culture and Society – Oregon State University

Larry Roper is a Professor in the School of Language, Culture, and Society, where he is Coordinator of the undergraduate Social Justice minor and the CSSA  Masters program. From 1995-2014 he served as Vice Provost for Student Affairs at OSU, where he also served terms as the Interim Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Interim Director of the School of Language, Culture, and Society. Larry earned his bachelors at Heidelberg College, masters at Bowling Green State University, and doctorate from University of Maryland, College Park. He has worked in housing, career services, student conduct, multicultural services, and as a dean of students. Professional organizations Larry is involved include AAC&U, ACPA, and NASPA.  His current areas of research include multiculturalism and diversity, community building, leadership, and identity. Larry currently serves as a Commissioner with the State of Oregon’s Higher Education Coordinating Commission, he served a 4-year term as Editor of the NASPA Journal, and 6 years as a Commissioner with the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

Larry has more than 60 publications in the form of books, book chapters, journal articles, magazine articles, book reviews and monographs. He writes a regular column for the Journal of College and Character. He is editor of the monograph, Supporting and Supervising Mid-Level Professionals: Charting a Path to Success (2011) and co-editor of, Angst and Hope: Current Issues in Student Affairs Leadership (2016), Teaching for Change: The Difference, Power and Discrimination Model (2007).  He has also served on more than 75 thesis or dissertation committees, having chaired more than 40.  He is co-editor the recently published monograph Centering Dialogue in Leadership Development (2019).

Larry finds student affairs and higher education work to be energizing and inspiring.

Rachel Singer, Senior Resource Faculty – Washington Center 

I was at Kingsborough Community College for twenty-six years (1986-2012) serving in many capacities. Specifically, as the Director of Academic Affairs for ten years, I was fortunate to have overseen and been part of the Opening Doors Learning Communities and Advanced Learning Communities Programs. These learning communities target under-prepared students at Kingsborough and over the years expanded from an initial enrollment of 100 students each semester to over 1,200. Also, as Director of KCC’s Academic Scheduling and Evening Studies, I developed the college’s Weekend and Evening College, allowing non-traditional students to earn a degree by attending classes solely on weekends and in the evenings.

After leaving Kingsborough Community College, I joined Achieving the Dream as Vice President of Community College Relations and Applied Research, and later as Senior Fellow (2011-2018). During my tenure there I worked to promote the adoption of evidence-based reforms in teaching and learning and college practices to improve student success.

I am delighted to say that I am now the senior resource faculty for the Washington Center’s Summer Institute for Improving Undergraduate Education.

Sonja Wiedenhaupt, Faculty, Masters in Teaching Program – The Evergreen State College

I came to Evergreen as a psychologist with a particular interest in learning and motivation. For the last fifteen years, I’ve been teaching in the Masters in Teaching program. This two-year coordinated studies learning community and K-12 teacher certification program integrates themes of democracy, multicultural and equity-minded perspectives, and developmentally appropriate teaching practices.

I have also developed and taught in a range of undergraduate interdisciplinary programs including Health and Human Development, a program that used biology, psychology, anthropology, and intercultural communication as tools for learning about physiological and psychological development in a cultural context; Reinhabitation, a first-year program that used psychology, field natural history, and community service to investigate the question of what it means to be an inhabitant in a community; Waste and Want: The Psychology, Business and Science of Consumption, a first-year program designed to investigate the nature, influences and impacts of consumption; Climate Change: Action and Influence, a program that examined the scientific global warming data and explored the psychological factors that made climate change a contested issue.

I teach and work to refine in my own practice in the following areas, including how to:

  • use the principles of learning to inform instructional decision making;
  • structure opportunities for metacognition that support motivation and learning;
  • structure group work and dialogue to promote inquiry and interdependence; and
  • engage inquiry oriented critical reflection.

Past Members of the Board

  • Joye Hardiman, Professor Emeritus, Arts & Humanities – The Evergreen State College
  • Pat Hutchings, Senior Scholar – National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment
  • Jen Whetham, Program Administrator for Faculty Development – Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges