Laspau staff member Aline Santos named Harvard Hero

CAMBRIDGE, MA, April 3, 2019 – Laspau is pleased to announce that Aline Santos, our Operations and Systems Coordinator, has been named a 2019 Harvard Hero for her outstanding contributions. Her work has been integral to Laspau’s effective adoption of new technologies and streamlining of our operations and systems.

Harvard Heroes is an annual program held each spring to celebrate high-performing staff from across every School and the Central Administration with both local and University-wide recognition. Being named a Harvard Hero is an honor of great distinction – only about 60 Heroes, or ½ of 1% of eligible staff, are named each year, with selection based on 11 important criteria. These staff members are nominated and/or selected by their peers and departments for their leadership, teamwork, adaptability, innovation and exceptional contributions. (For more information about Harvard Heroes, see the program website.)

Laspau looks forward to celebrating this achievement with Aline and the other Harvard Heroes at a university-wide event in June. 

 

 

Laspau Announces New Leadership for Board of Trustees

Laspau is pleased to announce the election of new leadership to its Board of Trustees.  At the annual meeting, held last November in Cartagena, Colombia to coincide with the Higher Education Summit of the Americas, Laspau elected Christine Scott Nelson as the new Chair of the Board, Ned Strong and Mauricio Lopez Obregón as Vice Chairs and Clark Bernard as Treasurer. Former Chair of the Board Jeff Coburn ended his term after serving on the Board since 2010, and serving as Chair since 2012. Treasurer John Knutson also ended his term as Treasurer, which he served in since 2014.

Board Chair Christine Scott Nelson

Newly-elected Board Chair Christine Scott Nelson has been a member of Laspau’s Board of Trustees since 2015 and is a Founder of Cornerstone Research, a consulting firm that provides expert testimony, economic, and financial analysis to attorneys in all phases of commercial litigation and regulatory proceedings. She received a bachelor’s degree from Allegheny College, a master’s degree from Boston University, and a master’s degree from MIT’s Sloan School of Management. She has also studied in Spain, Argentina, and Germany. In addition to serving on Laspau’s board, Ms. Nelson serves on the board of Cornerstone Research; the board of Second Nature, the supporting organization of the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment; and the board of De Novo, a legal services and counseling provider. She also serves as a Trustee of Allegheny College, co-chairing the college’s current capital campaign.

Laspau’s Inaugural Higher Education Summit of the Americas kicks off in Cartagena, Colombia

Cartagena, COLOMBIA November 16, 2018- Laspau, a nonprofit organization affiliated with Harvard University, has launched the inaugural Higher Education Summit of the Americas, which is being held November 16th and 17th, 2018 in Cartagena, Colombia.

The Summit has convened over 100 leaders from government, business and higher education across 14 countries to re-envision the role of the university in Latin America and the Caribbean and advance its relevance and impact in 21st-century society. These leaders include university presidents and vice presidents, government ministers and secretaries and business leaders from across Latin America and the Caribbean.

Through this milestone event, Laspau is harnessing the collective knowledge of leaders across the region as well as bridging collaboration across government, business and higher education sectors. Over the next two days, leaders will be discussing societal challenges in relation to academic research, international trends, and system-wide practices for cultivating innovation ecosystems and knowledge-based societies.

The summit includes sessions including Defining Excellence: The Role of Higher Education Quality in a

Competitive EnvironmentThe Hemispheric University: Global Engagement in an Era of Retrenchment, and Crises and Opportunities: Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean.

 

Laspau’s Executive Director, Angélica Natera, commented, “We are very excited to see this unique event coming to fruition and grateful for the opportunity to exchange ideas with leaders from across the Americas who are working to make higher education stronger on a daily basis. We see this event as the start of an ongoing dialogue that will have an impact for years to come.”

Over the past 50 years, Laspau has collaborated closely with governments, foundations, nonprofits and educational institutions across the Americas. The organization currently manages several longstanding scholarship programs for partners such as the Fulbright Program of the U.S. Department of State, the Organization of American States, and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, among others. Additionally, over the past ten years, Laspau has helped hundreds of universities across the region to improve their quality and effectiveness by connecting them with the latest knowledge and pioneering faculty in the field through programs to strengthen teaching and learning, enhance the quality and impact of education, and promote innovation and academic leadership. The Higher Education Summit of the Americas represents the nexus of these areas of work and seeks to further strengthen and promote meaningful collaboration across higher education, business and governments throughout the Americas.

At the conclusion of the Summit a compilation of innovative ideas, practical actions, and proposals obtained from the various sessions will be published for the good of the entire region.

Confirmed speakers include:

  • Fernando Reimers, Ford Foundation Professor of Practice in International Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education (View Welcome Message: https://youtu.be/OexitDmkuc0)
  • Julio Frenk, President, University of Miami (View Welcome Message: https://youtu.be/SRhL1CiLkFs)
  • Alberto Bustamante, Director of Education Industry for Latin America and the Caribbean, Microsoft Edward Crawley, Ford Professor of Engineering, MIT
  • María Marta Ferreyra, Senior Economist for Latin America and the Caribbean, World Bank
  • Harry Lewis, Gordon McKay Professor of Computer Science, Harvard University
  • Eric Mazur, Dean of Applied Physics, Harvard University
  • Richard K. Miller, President of Olin College
  • Jamil Salmi, Tertiary Education Expert
  • Cecilia María Vélez, President of Universidad Jorge Tadeo Lozano

 

This event is by invitation only. Additional information can be found on the event website at www.laspausummit.org.

About Laspau

Laspau is a nonprofit organization affiliated with Harvard University that enhances higher educational quality, opportunity and impact throughout the Americas. For over fifty years we have been building a human network, connecting individuals and institutions with opportunities, through admissions testing, scholarship management, university development and alliance building.

Connecting over 1,000 institutions, 18,000 scholars and 5,000 educators, we create opportunity and drive innovation. By bridging high-quality institutions and building communities of effective faculty who instruct ever-growing numbers of students, our network expands, opening up cutting-edge opportunities. This echoing impact works to achieve our vision of fostering knowledge-based, inclusive societies throughout the Western Hemisphere.

www.laspau.harvard.edu

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Laspau to hold inaugural Higher Education Summit of the Americas in Cartagena, Colombia

Laspau has announced that it will hold the inaugural Higher Education Summit of the Americas on November 16th and 17th, 2018 in Cartagena, Colombia.

The Summit will convene 100 leaders from government, business, and higher education to re-envision the role of the university in Latin America and the Caribbean to advance its relevance and impact in 21st-century society. These leaders include university presidents and vice presidents, government ministers and secretaries and business leaders from across Latin America and the Caribbean.

Through this milestone event, Laspau aims to harness the collective knowledge of leaders, bridge collaboration across government, business and higher education sectors, and articulate shared priorities for transforming higher education in the region. Over the course of two days, leaders will discuss societal challenges in relation to academic research, international trends, and system-wide practices for cultivating innovation ecosystems and knowledge-based societies.

The summit will include sessions on Reinventing the Role of the University in Latin America, The University as a Driver of Economic Growth, Innovating Education to Educate Innovators, Utilizing Big Data and Artificial Intelligence to Scale Innovation in Higher Education.

One of the Summit’s keynote speakers, Dr. Julio Frenk, the President of the University of Miami, sees the Summit as an opportunity for “sharing our strategy to become a hemispheric university by engaging with other institutions of higher learning form the region to address some of the world’s most pressing challenges.”

Over the past 50 years, Laspau has collaborated closely with governments, foundations, nonprofits and educational institutions across the Americas. The organization currently manages several longstanding scholarship programs for partners such as the Fulbright Program of the U.S. Department of State, the Organization of American States, and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, among others. Additionally, over the past ten years, Laspau has helped hundreds of universities across the region to improve their quality and effectiveness by connecting them with the latest knowledge and pioneering faculty in the field through programs to strengthen teaching and learning, enhance the quality and impact of education, and promote innovation and academic leadership. The Higher Education Summit of the Americas represents the nexus of these areas of work and seeks to further strengthen and promote meaningful collaboration across higher education, business, and governments throughout the Americas.

At the conclusion of the Summit a compilation of innovative ideas, practical actions, and proposals obtained from the various sessions will be published for the good of the entire region.

Confirmed keynote speakers include:

  • Alberto Bustamante, Director of Education Industry for Latin America and the Caribbean, Microsoft
  • Edward Crawley, Ford Professor of Engineering, MIT
  • María Marta Ferreyra, Senior Economist for Latin America and the Caribbean, World Bank
  • Julio Frenk, President, University of Miami (View Welcome Video)
  • Harry Lewis, Gordon McKay Professor of Computer Science, Harvard University
  • Eric Mazur, Dean of Applied Physics, Harvard University
  • Richard K. Miller, President of Olin College
  • Fernando Reimers, Ford Foundation Professor of Practice in International Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education (View Welcome Video)
  • Jamil Salmi, Tertiary Education Expert
  • Cecilia María Vélez, President of Universidad Jorge Tadeo Lozano

This event is by invitation only. Additional information can be found on the event website at www.laspausummit.org.

Laspau and SEMESP Implement the IV STHEM Brazil Forum

MOOCA, BRAZIL, March 22-23, 2018- Over the past two days, professor representing public and private institutions from Brazil met at the IV STHEM Brazil Forum to promote and exchange innovative teaching methodologies in higher education.

The STHEM Brazil Forum is an initiative between Laspau and the union of private higher education institutions from the State of São Paulo (SEMESP), which, since 2012,  has aimed to train professors from Brazil through innovative teaching theories and best practices in areas of content development, assessment, and learning management. Trainers are faculty and administrators of institutions such as Harvard, MIT, Olin College, Tecnológico de Monterrey, Université du Québec à Montréal, among others.

This year, professors gathered at the Universidade São Judas Tadeu and presented projects on varied practices such as peer instruction, active learning, project-based learning, gamification, design thinking, flipped classroom, and blended learning, which they had implemented in their respective classes.

The Forum had special participation from the MIT Media Lab researcher, Professor Leo Burd. Burd runs the Lemann Creative Learning Program, has worked on in education projects include Scratch and App Inventor and created the VoIP Drupal open source toolkit and applications for neighborhood communication, local tourism, open governance, and community engagement. His studies focus on designing technologies for creative learning and social empowerment.

For more information on the STHEM Consortium, please read about Fabio Garcia Reis, one of the Consortium founders, or  visit the STHEM Brasil website (in Portuguese).

For more information on University Innovation programs like the STHEM Consortium, please contact our Program Manager for Academic Innovation, Colleen Silva-Hayden.

A Weeklong Discussion on University English-Language Teaching in Peru

LIMA, PERU, March 12-16, 2018- Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos (UNMSM) organized the University English-Language Teaching workshop this week bringing together teaching and learning experts in the field. Representatives from The British Council, IATEFL Peru, Euroidiomas, and Relo Andrés were among the featured panelists.

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With the theme of “Empowering English Teachers in Language Training”, the workshop focused on improving teaching methodologies, understanding the need for faculty development, formulating active engagement strategies through effective communication and gaming, and more. As an invited panelist, Laspau Executive Director, Angélica Natera explored the topic on innovation trends behind teaching and learning and how the leading universities around the world are rethinking their approach to education.

The University English-Language Teaching workshop was held for 5 consecutive days and gathered university and department lecturers, and students from the Department of Linguistics, Faculty of Arts and Human Sciences.

Photo courtesy of UNMSM General Office for Cooperation and Inter-Institutional Relations

 

Strengthening Research: Laspau Signs Partnership with Universidad Nacional del Altiplano – Puno

CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS, March 9, 2018- Over the past week, Laspau hosted a group of academic leaders from the Universidad Nacional del Altiplano – Puno (UNA-Puno) culminating in the signing today of a collaborative agreement between the two institutions.

Located in the northern region of Peru, UNA-Puno is a public university composed of 19,000 undergraduate students pursuing studies concentrated in the fields of science, technology or arts.

During the visit, UNA-Puno President, Dr. Porfirio Enriquez, along with the Academic Provost Dr. Rogelio Florez, and Provost for Research Dr. Wenceslao Medina, met with academic and administrative leaders from Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to discuss strategies for re-envisioning institutional transformation. “Human capital is the key element in the national and international positioning of the public university in Peru,” says Dr. Enriquez during the academic delegation visit.

The university is embarking on a comprehensive strategic planning process for the year 2021, which will focus on positioning UNA-Puna as a research-based institution for undergraduates and on improving teaching and learning through innovative methodologies.

 

Costa Rican Faculty Receive Training in Innovative Teaching Methodologies

SAN JOSÉ, COSTA RICA, February 19-23 2018-  Over 150 professors from Costa Rica participated this week in the STEM-Costa Rica Consortium, an intensive training program sponsored by the National Accreditation System for Higher Education (SINAES) in collaboration with Laspau.

The participants were professors from 17 public and private universities. The program included international experts from institutions in the United States and Chile, including Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and Universidad de Chile. The program covered innovative methodologies to improve teaching processes, focusing on active learning, flipped classroom, design thinking, learning assessment and course design.

STEM-CR is an English acronym that stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. The program has been providing training for faculty from public and private institutions in Costa Rica since October 2017.  The STEM consortium model is also being successfully implemented and having a positive effect in the higher education systems of Brazil and Panama.

To participate in the program, professors undergo a competitive selection process led by the authorities of each participating institution. The selection criteria include a commitment to teaching and innovating and demonstration of leadership skills. The participants are also selected because they are committed to developing a project to improve a specific teaching practice that they are currently implementing in their classrooms.

To learn more information on the STEM-CR program, please read about Natalia Murillo-Quirós, a Professor of Physics who uses Peer Instruction to strengthen physics teaching.

Photos of the 2018 STEM-CR program are now available at University Innovation – Costa.

For more information on University Innovation programs like the STHEM Consortium, please contact our Program Manager for Academic Innovation, Colleen Silva-Hayden.

Launching the Scholar Ambassador Blog

CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS, February 6, 2018- Laspau is pleased to announce the launch of the Scholar Ambassador Blog, a place where scholars from Laspau-administered programs share stories in their own words of what it is like to study, research, and teach at higher education institutions abroad. These stories demonstrate the scholars’ belief in the transformative power of higher education, as well as their dedication to applying the knowledge and skills they’ve gained abroad for the betterment of their communities and countries. They are also a testament to the vision and commitment of the incredible sponsors (including governments, foundations, corporations, and individuals) that we have had the privilege of working with over the years.

As we embark on this storytelling journey, we hope that the blog will enable you to share in the experience of scholars from diverse backgrounds and regions and understand how they stayed motivated and focused, despite significant challenges. We also hope these stories will open doors to a world of possibilities to those who dream of following the path of higher education and international exchange.

Homepage

The scholar ambassador blog is organized into three sections: About the Blog, the scope of the project; Become A Scholar Ambassador, an invitation component that encourages scholars to become bloggers; and Recent Stories, a component where blog stories are housed.

The blog is edited and moderated by Laspau staff.

Content & Support

To get involved, scholars must be a current or former Laspau-administered grantee, and committed to writing two or more stories within a year. Scholars submit the story through an interest form, and then receive feedback and editing assistance.

Social Media

Each blog story contains integrated social media buttons for Facebook and Twitter to foster content sharing between readers’ social network.

Innovating in Higher Education: Key Experiences in Latin America and the Caribbean 2016-2017

SANTIAGO, CHILE, February 1, 2018- We are delighted to announce the launch of a series of books: Innovating in Higher Education: Key Experiences in Latin America and the Caribbean, 2016-2017.

Laspau and Universidad de Chile have published a series of books on best practices in teaching aimed at promoting quality learning for students in higher education. The three-volume series is available in Spanish and Portuguese at this time.

Organized around three central themes, the combined volumes consist of 52 unique cases and present an array of best practices based on methodologies, classroom settings, curriculum and assessment, technology implementation, professional development, and diversity & inclusion. The cases are based on the experiences of faculty from Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Panama, Peru, and Uruguay at their institutions.

 

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In March, Laspau will announce the call for proposals for submissions to the fourth volume in the series. We welcome proposals from faculty, scholars, administrators who would like to share experiences of innovation in their university teaching that may contribute to the advances of teaching practices in the region.

For more information on University Innovation programs or publications, please contact Colleen Silva-Hayden, Assistant Director of University Innovation