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Ben Akuma

Benjamin E. Akuma is a Support Manager for the Information Technology Help Desk, as well as the IT Support Specialist for the Division of Student Affairs at The College of New Jersey. He bleeds blue and gold! It is for this reason that he aims to provide the campus community with high quality technology support and inspire innovative collaboration. A proud Alum of TCNJ, Benjamin holds a BA in Communication Studies and MBA from this prestigious institution.


Judi Cook

Judi Cook is Executive Director of the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, where she creates resources and faculty professional development opportunities in support of innovative and effective course design. Before taking on her current role, Dr. Cook served as TCNJ’s inaugural Director of the Office of Instructional Design from 2014-2022. She came to TCNJ from Salem State University, where for 16 years she served as a faculty member in the Media and Communication department. Some of her research interests include universal design, active learning, and digital pedagogy.


Ellen Farr

Ellen Farr is the Assistant Director of The College of New Jersey’s Center for Teaching and Learning. With over 20 years of experience in higher education, Ellen is passionate about supporting faculty in their course design and pedagogical goals. Ellen also works closely with campus partners to promote a culture of teaching excellence and student-centered learning. To stay current in higher education issues and trends, Ellen teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in academic writing, assistive technology, and children’s literature.  Some of her research interests include the design of learning environments, inclusive education, and digital literacy.


Yifeng Hu

Yifeng Hu (Ph.D., Penn State University, she/her) is an associate professor of Communication Studies. Her research focuses on technology, health, culture, and pedagogy. She has recently published a book chapter titled “Screaming Out Loud in the Communication Classroom: Asian Stereotypes and the Fallibility of Image Generating Artificial Intelligence.” Hu has produced a book, Communicated Stereotypes at Work. In addition, her work has appeared in journals such as Communication Research, Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, Journal of Communication in Healthcare, Atlantic Journal of Communication, Electronic Journal of Communication, and in several edited volumes. Outside the classroom, Hu has led her students to carry out multiple Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) advocacy campaigns on campus to address issues such as stereotypes, discrimination, xenophobia, injustice, ignorance, in/visibility, and belonging. Hu has also co-created the Asian and Asian American Pacific Islander Coalition, an employee affinity group, at TCNJ. Hu is the proud recipient of the inaugural ASIANetwork-Mellon Foundation Award for the “AAPI Voices and Stories: Community-based Digital Storytelling” project, the Outstanding Creative/Performance Project Award by the Asian/Pacific American Caucus and Studies Division of the National Communication Association, and the inaugural Faculty Recognition Award in Excellence in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at TCNJ. Hu played a significant role in advocating for the passing of the AAPI curriculum bill in New Jersey.


Celia Liu

With a cross-disciplinary background, Dr. Celia Liu holds a Master’s degree in Taxation and another in Accounting from the Fordham University Gabelli School of Business, a Master of Arts in Teaching from Rutgers University, and a Doctorate degree from the University of Pennsylvania. Recently, her book, Ancient Texts with Modern Values, was published in Taiwan, further cementing her research contribution to the field of language teaching. In 2022, TCNJ received a prestigious Fulbright Hays grant from the U.S. Department of Education. As the project director of this program, Dr, Liu led a group of NJ P-12 educators and TCNJ faculty to Taiwan in summer 2023.


Dylan MorenoDylan Moreno

I am a senior at TCNJ and I major in World Languages and Linguistics with a focus in Spanish and a minor in Chinese. I have a certification for Spanish for Health Purposes. I have held student teaching positions for TCNJ, teaching Spanish to students at various proficiency levels. I am a recipient of the HUAYU Best Scholarship to study Chinese in Taiwan for the summer of 2023. I am also the recipient of the TCNJ Access for Education Abroad Scholarship for the spring of 2024 to study Spanish in Costa Rica. I am a member of the National Spanish Honor Society Sigma Delta Pi and the National Collegiate Chinese Honor Society. After graduation I plan on moving abroad to teach English as a foreign language while also pursuing a Master’s Degree in Teaching English as a Second Language. Dr. Liu and I recently gave a presentation on using AI for language learning for the UN Chinese Language Forum and we hope to give an improved version of the presentation in this panel. Thank you for the opportunity!


John T. Oliver

John T. Oliver coordinates instruction at Gitenstein Library and specializes in the information skills learning of first-year students. He teaches IDS 102 (“Information Literacy Proficiency”), a mandatory library skills and academic research course for all TCNJ students. He holds an MLIS from Rutgers University, and an MA in Cognitive Studies in Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. Before becoming a librarian at TCNJ, he was a health sciences librarian at Columbia University Medical Center. He earned his undergraduate degree (in English) at TCNJ. His research interests include best practices in multimedia teaching and learning; information literacy, especially in first-year students and other students in transition; and strategies and supports for librarian collaboration with campus partners.

Jennifer Palmgren

Jennifer Palmgren is Assistant Provost for Academic Affairs at The College of New Jersey. She works with the college’s shared governance system and helps to coordinate the approval processes for new academic programs. She also serves as the college’s MSCHE Accreditation Liaison Officer. Prior to joining TCNJ in 2014, she was a faculty member and program director at Saint Paul’s College in Lawrenceville, Virginia. She received her BA in English from the College of the Holy Cross and her MA and PhD in English from the University of Kansas.


Kim Pearson

Kim Pearson is a professor of journalism at The College of New Jersey who teaches a range of courses including Media Entrepreneurship, Health and Environmental Journalism and Race, Gender and the News. She is a co-founder of TCNJ’s Interactive Multimedia Department. Her journalism has been published in the Online Journalism Review, Black Enterprise, and Newsday, among other outlets. She has been part of teams whose research on improving science literacy and civic engagement has garnered support from the National Science Foundation, Microsoft Research, and the New Jersey Council of the Humanities.

Pearson is a past recipient of the New Jersey Professor of the Year award from the Carnegie Foundation and the Council for the Advancement and Support for Education. Her professional affiliations include the Society of Environmental Journalists, Online News Association, the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, Phi Kappa Phi and the National Association of Black Journalists. She serves as advisor for the campus chapter of Girls Who Code. Prof. Pearson holds an AB in Politics from Princeton University with a Certificate in African American Studies and an MA in Journalism from New York University.

Nina Ringer

Nina Ringer has been the Director of the Writing Program since 2013. She serves on the Liberal Learning Program Council and the First Seminar Coordinating Committee and teaches First-Year Writing and First-Year Seminar. Her most recent conference presentations have been on Writing Studio, reading a film and writing about it, and the parallel between composing a film and composing an essay. Her first-year courses focus on writing about film, writing about recent television narrative, and, every four years, on the escalating media around the presidential election. She is always looking for new ideas on how to teach students to write.


Andrea Salgian

Dr. Andrea Salgian is a professor in the Department of Computer Science, which she joined in 2005. She got her BS in Computer Science from the Babes Bolyai University in Cluj, Romania, and her MS and PhD in Computer Science from the University of Rochester in Rochester, NY. Her research spans the areas of Computer Vision, Human Computer Interaction, and Artificial Intelligence. She has worked on a variety of visual recognition problems, including object, face, and gesture recognition. Dr. Salgian has mentored numerous research projects, and is passionate about introducing students to these areas.


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