College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources
When the COVID-19 crisis occurred Karissa clearly and calmly demonstrated her ability to lead by example in the area of distance education and eLearning for our college. A large majority of the 140 teaching faculty had never taught an on-line course or they had limited instructional experience teaching in a distance environment. Had it not been for Karissa's expertise, and her quiet, reassuring leadership, many of the faculty in the college would have struggled to successfully transition their face-to-face classes to an on-line environment, especially in the short time-frame allowed. Karissa quickly devised a game plan and immediately started reaching out to faculty. She developed quick yet effective training programs, developed and distributed support documents to aid in the COVID-19 transition, held webinars, and researched transition implementation strategies. She communicated with faculty on a nearly daily basis with recommendations, tips, instructional documents, best practices recommendation, webinars, and numerous other resources. She developed over 20 Daily Tips on topics ranging from "Using Tools in Blackboard" to "Time Saving Ways to Teach On-Line during Covid-19." From mid-March to mid-June she held well over 160 virtual meetings in response to the emergency transition to remote learning, individually consulting with faculty on course development, Mediasite, and Blackboard assistance. Our college and the University owes a huge debt of gratitude to Karissa for her recent contributions, but also for her 25 years of outstanding service in distance education.