Campus & Community

Fellows recognized for exemplary work

3 min read

Connecting the dots to make big picture

Since the Presidential Instructional Technology Fellowship (PITF) program was launched in summer 2004. More than 200 graduate and undergraduate students have provided services to the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS), the Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD), the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE), Harvard Divinity School (HDS), Harvard Law School (HLS), Harvard Medical School (HMS), and the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH). Approximately 600 courses at the University have been affected.

The Presidential Instructional Technology Fellows work one-on-one with faculty to develop digital course materials with immediate educational uses. Fellows leverage existing software tools developed at Harvard and provide outreach, consulting, training, and support for those who wish to use digital resources in their teaching. The fellows have created a variety of content including simulations, interactive syllabi, library research guides, and customized learning modules for hundreds of courses at the University.

The program has created valuable learning experiences for the fellows, who have had the opportunity to learn and utilize technical and pedagogical skills while designing materials that improve the teaching and learning experience for others. Students and faculty have also had the opportunity to work closely with each other around curriculum development.

This year’s four fellows and instructional computing technology staff from the participating Schools gathered for an April 25 ceremony at the Harvard Faculty Club. There, the fellows were recognized for their exemplary work in line with the vision of the program.

This year’s Presidential Instructional Technology Fellows are as follows:

Vincent Leung and Jascha Smilack (both of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences [GSAS]) were recognized for their outreach to faculty in the East Asian Languages and Civilizations Department and their outstanding program leadership. Through their outreach, they have successfully furthered the use of instructional technology among faculty and students. East Asian language faculty involvement in the PITF program has tripled since Leung and Smilack started their outreach efforts.

Ryan Overbey (GSAS) was recognized for creating an online research tool that allows students to create primary sources and share their research findings with fellow students, resulting in easy accumulation and sharing of knowledge. In addition to his technical contributions, Overbey was also recognized for his “creativity, insight, pedagogical awareness, and collegiality,” according to the program.

Nan Hutton (HDS) was named a fellow for creating the first-of-its-kind German course Web site at HDS. The site, with extensive and rich educational content and resources, is used by students and instructors to facilitate translation, practice, and instruction both in and outside of the classroom. Hutton has successfully created a reusable model for teaching language courses at HDS.