Can learning transform your life? On this shared journey, Maria reveals the future of learning and work through the stories of people who are disrupting how we learn, work, and live in the connection economy. Together with her guests, she teaches you how to design your learning journey and create the life you want. The podcast puts full ownership of learning and work in the hands of students and professionals determined to build a better future for yourselves and society. We can talk about learning, we can design it, or we can do both. Welcome to Impact Learning with Maria Xenidou.
Transforming Middle School Students to Leaders through Game-based Learning with Christina Oliver
Today, Maria talks with Christina Oliver, Executive Director at Classroom, Inc, an EdTech nonprofit founded by Lewis Bernard from Morgan Stanley to bridge the learning gap between middle school and the workplace.
Through Read to Lead, their digital learning games platform, they put middle school students in charge of their learning by becoming the boss in a virtual workplace. They read closely, think critically, and solve real-world problems, all while balancing the hectic demands of an exciting workplace. Most importantly, these middle schoolers build critical literacy and leadership skills to help them thrive in school, life and career.
The impact of Read to Lead is transformational. Students, especially those struggling with literacy and engagement increase reading achievement, find motivation in being the leader and see - often for the first time - a real connection between learning, career and their future
Middle school teachers and educators can join the Read to Lead platform at rtlgames.org for free to access their digital learning games and curriculum as well as a plethora of development tools and resources to help them build skills and increase their impact on their students.
Tune in to learn from a leader who believes that hands-on game-based learning can empower middle school students to build 21st-century skills and develop the confidence to thrive in school, college, career and life.
Increasing Access to Education for Every Student Everywhere with Nina Huntemann
Today, Maria talks with Nina Huntemann, Vice President of Learning at edX where she is responsible for defining and driving their instructional and pedagogical strategy to improve outcomes for 30 million learners through collaboration with more than 150 partners worldwide.
Nina changed her university major from journalism to mass communication and obtained her PhD in communication to unpack the power structures and systems in the communication field. She was a tenured professor when she decided to disrupt herself, step away from a proven career and enhanced her impact in the emerging learning and education ecosystem.
Nina joined edX in 2015 and has been dedicated to increasing access to high-quality education, creating and launching innovative academic programs and career-relevant credentials, and applying evidence-based practice to learning design.
Founded by Harvard and MIT in 2012, edX is transforming traditional education by removing the barriers of cost, location and access. Fulfilling the demand for people to learn on their own terms, edX is providing the highest-quality, stackable learning experiences through a plethora of courses, including the groundbreaking MicroMasters® programs.
Open edX is the open-source platform that powers edX courses and is freely available to educators and technologists who want to build learning tools and create solutions to benefit students everywhere in the world.
During their conversation, Maria and Nina discuss the new courses, programs and initiatives edX launched amid the pandemic to further support the needs of their learners at every stage of their journey, whether entering the job market, changing fields, or exploring new interests.
Tune in to learn from a leader in a movement that is reimagining education on-campus and online and improving teaching and learning outcomes.
Training Future STEM Leaders One Student at a Time with Susanne Cappendijk
Today, Maria talks with Susanne Cappendijk, Founder and President of EDsnaps, a non-profit organization that wants to increase diversity in the Science Technology Engineering and Math workforce. Through partnerships and collaborations with academia, corporations, non-profit organizations and individual volunteers, they are providing free after-school and summer programs to female-identifying students through hands-on experiences and real-life interactions.
Susanne is a strategic, creative and visionary entrepreneurial professional with a unique blend of scientific research skills gained in academia, complemented by business consulting experience with companies ranging from early-stage startups to Fortune 100 corporations.
They discuss how EDsnaps addresses STEM talent gaps in a creative, positive and collaborative environment that enables female-identifying students to build 21-century skills and get ready for the next phase of their careers as well-rounded and well-grounded STEM leaders.
They also unpack how Susanne bootstrapped her idea in 2017, starting with a pilot summer program and how, amid the pandemic, they moved their programs entirely online. She also talks about the new summer 2020 intern and fellow program that offered paid internships for undergraduate and graduate students whose internships were cancelled.
Tune in to learn from a creative and business-savvy social entrepreneur who knows how to turn constraints upside down and solve real-life problems in education.
Designing Flexible Learning Spaces at School, and at Home with Robert Dillon
Today, Maria talks with Robert Dillon, author, consultant and school designer who is working with teachers and education leaders throughout the country. Robert has been honored by The Center for Green Schools, the dSchool at Stanford University, the Buck Institute for Education, and Future Ready Schools.
Robert has been serving kids and families as a teacher, principal, technology director, and innovation leader for over twenty years. He brings synergy to instructional design, technology infusion, and learning space design. He believes that in this synergy is the educational gold that students need to be successful citizens in a modern world.
During this conversation, Maria and Robert dive into the book he co-authored with Rebecca Hare called The Space: A Guide for Educators. Robert shares actionable insights and best practices on how to design a flexible and agile learning space that fosters creativity, collaboration, teamwork, inclusion and empathy.
They also discuss What a Good Classroom Design Looks Like in the Age of Social Distancing and how teachers and educators can create a low-stress learning space that promotes health, joy, trust, and connection.
Tune in to learn from an inspiring education leader who is helping teachers develop a designer mindset and empowering their students to grow in an active and flexible learning space.
Creating Magic with People and Technology in HigherEd with Rolin Moe
Today, Maria talks with Rolin Moe, Dean of Academic Support & Learning Technologies at Skyline College, and Director of Distance Education Initiative at San Mateo County Community College District. Under his leadership, they’ve trained over 1,000 faculty, staff and administration and prepared them to provide effective online learning programs in the fall.
As an education administrator, Rolin has been leading people towards a shared vision of equity and access in learning environments, specifically distance education and educational innovation. He has worked closely with formal and non-formal learning institutions of all sizes, designing and implementing programs and strategies to enhance learning and teaching.
Together, they unpack the manifesto Rolin wrote against EdTech during the recent emergency online pivot, and he shares his experience harnessing the power of people and the importance of communication, customized training and hands-on support.
Tune in to learn from a scholar, practitioner and innovator who believes that “the best education environments provide ample opportunities for learners to engage and for experts to facilitate, fill knowledge gaps, further skill development, and stay out of the way”.
Empowering Emerging Leaders to Thrive in College and Life with Abby Falik
Today, Maria talks with Abby Falik, an award-winning social entrepreneur and the founder & CEO of Global Citizen Year - a nonprofit using the power of a global immersion between high school and college to unlock curiosity, conviction, and courage in our next generation leaders. Global Citizen Year has pioneered a model that wraps education and instruction around real-world experience, that offers young leaders the empathy, humility and vision to see opportunities where others see challenges.
During their conversation, Abby explains why we need to reframe the gap year as a bridge year - an experience that builds self-awareness, global skills and grit through learning and social impact. They also talk about how, during the COVID-19 pandemic, they launched the Global Citizen Academy to empower emerging leaders to become changemakers who will help address our shared global challenges.
Tune in to learn from a recognized expert on social innovation, leadership, and the changing landscape of education who has been profiled by The New York Times, The Washington Post, NPR, and The Chronicle of Higher Education. Abby has been named one of the Most Creative People in Business by Fast Company in 2016, one of America’s Top 25 Philanthropy Speakers by The Business of Giving in 2018, and one of Goldman Sachs’ Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs for the third consecutive year in 2019.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Important and Excellent Content!
What could be more important right now (or anytime, right?) than discussing the future and importance of learning? Maria interviews a range of interesting and informative experts, asking wonderful and engaging questions to bring out relevant and timely info. Maria, thanks so much for the wonderful work you do! Please keep it up!
Education Alive & Thriving with Maria & Anette
by Stories From Women Who Walk
Clearly a well-researched topic, a fascinating guest, a generous and keenly questioning interviewer. Educators and podcasters need to subscribe and become a part of the wonderful world of learning that takes place here. Very well done - as always! Best take-away: don't wait for permission to begin- stand up & say something evenif your voice is shaking.
Encouraging and generous
The guest episodes and the Maria on mic episodes are both full of encouragement and generosity!