James DeVaney speaking with students

Growing Opportunities for a New Class of Academic Innovation Fellows

Trevor Parnell, Events and Marketing Specialist

Marissa Reid, Student Program Coordinator

At the start of each academic year, the Office of Academic Innovation (AI) brings in a group of highly motivated, energetic students to help us achieve our goal of creating a culture of innovation in learning. Students play an integral role in helping our office create new opportunities for personalized and engaged learning experiences for the University of Michigan community and learners around the world through Michigan Online. We have offered student opportunities within the areas of software development, user experience design, graphic design, data science, and innovation advocacy. With that being said, we would like to introduce you to the newly on-boarded AI student fellows for the 2019 academic year.

  • Shaelyn Albrecht, Quality Assurance Development Fellow, School of Information
  • Shaung Cheng, Software Development Fellow, School of Information
  • Guanchao Huang, User Experience Design Fellow, School of Information
  • Yun Hsiao, User Experience Design Fellow, School of Information
  • Xi Li, User Experience Design Fellow, School of Information
  • Yiwen Lin, Mentor Academy Student Research Coordinator, College of Literature, Science & the Arts
  • Yuting Luo, Online Learning Experience Building Assistant, School of Education
  • Megan Oster, Data Science Fellow, Rackham Graduate School
  • Brandon Punturo, Data Science Fellow, School of Information
  • Shameek Ray, Software Development Fellow, School of Information
  • Sagnik Roy, Research & Learning Analytics Fellow, School of Information
  • Daniel Schorin, Research & Learning Analytics Fellow, School of Information
  • Megan Taylor, Public Engagement Specialist, Rackham Graduate School
  • Tayloir Thompson, GradeCraft Assistant Coordinator, School of Information
  • Xindi Wang, Research & Learning Analytics Fellow, School of Information
  • Kylie Wojciechowski, Behavioral Science Fellow, School of Information
  • Xuenan Xu, User Experience Design Fellow, School of Information
  • Wenfei Yan, Data Science Fellow, College of Engineering
  • Fanpan Zeng, Software Development Fellow, School of Information
  • Xucong Zhan, Software Development Fellow, College of Engineering

Student collaborating in the Academic Innovation space

New Student Roles at the Office of Academic Innovation

As the office continues to evolve, we have created a few new student positions. These positions include a Quality Assurance Development Fellow, GradeCraft Assistant Coordinator, and Online Learning Experience Building Assistant. Rather than telling you about the new positions, we figured we would let the newly onboarded students tell you about their roles.

“My role here as an AI student fellow is as a software quality assurance analyst. I explore AI’s applications such as GradeCraft, developing tests to ensure that the features function and make sense in the way they work! I’m really looking forward to helping maintain the quality of AI’s current applications, knowing that these are applications that students like me are using. I’m looking forward to getting to know everyone here better, not only just in the teams that I’m working on but throughout the whole office. I’m also excited to be a part of new projects and help along their stages of development. It’s exciting to be involved in an environment that values innovation and brainstorming, and I’m excited to learn from so many creative individuals!”

Shaelyn Albrecht, Quality Assurance Development Fellow from the School of Information

“My role consists of assisting Evan Straub, the Learning Experience Designer for GradeCraft, with supporting the GradeCraft system by implementing troubleshooting and strategizing new user interface and functionality ideas. I am most looking forward to gaining product management experience and using the skills I obtain to contribute to a product that makes an impact on academic learning.I am most eager to work on the overall user experience of GradeCraft to ensure that professors and students can efficiently utilize all of its features.”

Tayloir Thompson, GradeCraft Assistant Coordinator from the School of Information

“I am part of the course building team. My main responsibilities are to build and maintain online courses on one of our partner platforms, Coursera. I hope to become familiar with the process of online course building and learn more about our partners like edX and Coursera. Also I would like to learn about targeting problems and solving problems with people from other departments within Academic Innovation. I am a detail-oriented person and I feel fulfilled when I build and review courses. It will be exciting to contribute my educational knowledge to the online course building process while finding methods that make our work more efficient.”

Yuting Luo, Online Learning Experience Building Assistant from the School of Education

Student collaborating in the Academic Innovation space

Providing a Valuable Student Experience

AI is focused on providing each of our student fellows with valuable experiences including networking opportunities, familiarity with general office culture, and opportunities to further develop their skills while gaining relevant experience to their career paths. Since joining the team in the spring of 2018, Marissa Reid, Student Program Coordinator, has helped create space for students to be grow professionally during their time with AI.

Some of these opportunities include:

  • AI Student Retreat: Check out this blog post for a recap of the retreat!
  • Engagement Hours: A informal setting for students to hear from a current Academic Innovation team member about their career path to date, their current role, and ways they can provide guidance and/or mentorship.
  • Academic Innovation Network: A space for students to easily connect with a network of former Academic Innovation fellows as well as industry experts to enhance the student portfolio.
  • Monthly All Student Meetings: Each month, the student fellows get together to get to know one another, update each other on current projects, and often times brainstorm solutions to current roadblocks.
  • All student fellows are encouraged to attend Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion sessions, MHealthy events, and all other meetings intended for the full office staff.
  • Social Gatherings

“We are continuing to look at ways to provide valuable experiences for students. Looking to the future, we will provide space for former AI fellows to share advice and guidance with students through “alumni chats”. In addition, we hope offer additional engagement hours with other members of the AI staff” – Marissa Reid, Student Program Coordinator.

We are always looking for students to join our team! For current and future student opportunities, visit ai.umich.edu/students/student-opportunities.