About the Fellows

Thirteen Columbia College Chicago faculty have been selected to serve as 2014/15 Convergence Academies Faculty Fellows by the Center for Community Arts Partnerships (CCAP). Supported by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Investing in Innovation Fund (i3 Fund), the Fellowships will help faculty to advance creative practice, research, curriculum development and/or pedagogy that centers on authentic and experiential learning in a digitally networked context.


Marcelo Caplan (Associate Professor, Science and Mathematics)– Translation of a set of STEAM activities and lesson plans previously developed for informal education (out of school time) into the formal education frame, or K-12 curriculum. The modules include alternative energies, the physics of sound and mathematics of music, people and plants, and robotics ($4,000).
Elizabeth Davis-Berg (Associate Professor, Science and Mathematics)– Participation in the K-13 Curricula Continuum Writing Team, drawing on expertise in biodiversity, urban landscapes, food webs, digital evidence gathering and gamification ($2,000).
Kevin Henry (Associate Professor, Art + Design) –Development of a new collaborative model for creating, testing, and refining interactive books that could augment traditional print materials designed with and for educators ($6,000).
Debra Kayes (Lecturer, Art + Design)– Exploration of media convergence, participatory culture, and collective intelligence—as a way to create connections between a new way of learning, and, hence, a new way of teaching. The project will bring practices from youth media culture that are practiced outside of the classroom into the classroom to create a more dynamic and interactive learning experience ($3,000).
Suzanne McBride (Associate Chair, Journalism) –Multimedia documentation and dissemination of the ongoing process behind the creation ofTilden Talks, an online student-produced journal that chronicles everyday life for teens growing up and attending school in the Back of the Yards neighborhood of Chicago ($6,000).
Timothy McCaskey (Assistant Professor, Science and Mathematics)– Participation in the K-13 Curricula Continuum Writing Team, drawing on expertise in STEAM, mathematics, physics and backwards curriculum design ($2,000).
Alexios Moore (Lecturer, First-Year Seminar) –Participation in the K-13 Curricula Continuum Writing Team, drawing on expertise in urban education and policy, curriculum development, creative non-fiction and early college writing. Alexios will also produce a white paper describing the Curriculum Continuum Advisory process in the context of recent curriculum development literature and digital media education ($2,000).
Hilary Sarat-St. Peter (Assistant Professor, English)- Towards participation as a lead member of the Curriculum Continuum writing team in order to seamlessly integrate user-centered technical communication into the K-13 curriculum ($3,000).
Jesse Seay (Assistant Professor, Audio Arts & Acoustics)– Development of an innovative new process for producing e-textiles through wearable circuit boards using a programmable knitting machine. Girls at the Convergence Academies will be introduced to a series of Instructables, online tutorials teaching circuit-knitting for creating battery-powered wearable art ($3,000).
Susan Stirling (Adjunct, Art + Design)– Collaborative project with Convergence Academy High School students along with a team from Gensler (a design, architecture, planning and consulting firm) that engages Columbia College students in applying participatory and information design principles to the prototyping of public spaces for college dormitories ($6,000).
Fereshteh Toosi (Senior Lecturer, First-Year Seminar) –Exploration of how low-cost citizen science research processes using open-source tools can be used for environmental exploration and investigation within the K-13 Curricular context ($3,000).
Eden Unluata (Adjunct, Interactive Arts and Media) –Development of a five-step applied research initiative that gathers evidence for gamification as a tool to be utilized in curricula so that students, both at the college and K-12 levels, are afforded with the skills, education, and agency necessary to thrive in a networked society ($6,000).
Krista Wortendyke (Adjunct, Photography)– Multimedia documentation and dissemination of the ongoing process behind the creation ofTilden Talks, an online student-produced journal that chronicles everyday life for teens growing up and attending school in the Back of the Yards neighborhood of Chicago ($6,000).