Professional Development - Special Events Series

Faculty Commons strives to offer JSU faculty the chance to participate in diverse learning environments through focused professional development trainings and workshops.  Our Special Events Series highlights learning initiatives and experiences from a variety of disciplines and special interest events 

This series supports the commitment of JSU’s Strategic Plan including the following strategic goal(s) and objectives 

  1. Commitment 3, Discover: As educators, we do not provide the answers. We provide the experiences, environments, and expectations that allow learners to discover the answers. 
    • Goal 1, Experiences: Provide learning experiences that connect learners with real-world knowledge skills, and opportunities. 

      • Objectives 1, Strategy/Action Item 7: Develop a thematic focus on experiential learning opportunities across academic programs. 

      • Objective 2: Strategy/Action Item 1: Provide professional development and training opportunities for faculty. 

Series Goals:

  • To offer diverse and accessible learning experiences for faculty from across the disciplines 

  • To facilitate exclusive events or special interest groups for faculty 

  • To hear the student perspective regarding professor instructional techniques and methods that turned them on to learning in higher education  

  • To listen to faculty peers discuss and share best practices for improving student success, especially through class/course engagement  

  • To receive data from the Student Success Center team about learning support outcomes  


Date: Tuesday, February 07th  

Presenter(s): Faculty, Student, and Staff Panelist

Event/Title: Student Success Center Faculty Summit: Wit, Wisdom, and Wine  

Description: Faculty Commons and the Student Success Center (SSC) are joining together to provide faculty with a relaxed forum to learn more about student success best practices as they relate to improved student persistence, retention, and graduation rates.  Because faculty are key to the success of students, the Student Success Summit will provide opportunities for the faculty to attend three informative panel sessions aimed at helping faculty learn more about the direct influence they have on students.  

Sessions will include a student-led panel featuring JSU students discussing impactful learning practices that have positively influenced their experiences in higher education, a faculty-led panel consisting of peers sharing best practices that help faculty connect with students for better class/course engagement, and finally, a Student Success Center panel sharing important updates on current data on SSC student use and outcomes. All our panels will be engaging and conversational. So, feel free to kick off your shoes to join us for wisdom, wit, and if so inclined, wine and enjoy stimulating discussions on student success. 

This event will take place between 1:30 and 4:30. We hope to see you at all our sessions; however, if you cannot make it for the entire event, please feel free to attend what you can. Panel times are listed below in case you need to drop in after the event officially starts. There will be a brief break between sessions to allow faculty time to join between meetings. Only one registration is necessary to attend this event, regardless of which panel session you attend. On-site registration will be available as well.  

*Following the conclusion of our student-led panel, free wine and beer will be available to faculty along with party gifts, compliments of Student Success Center and Faculty Commons.    

Delivery Mode:In-person.  

  • Student-Led Panel (1:30-2:15) 

  • Faculty-Led Panel (2:30-3:15) 

  • Student Success Center Panel (3:30-4:15) 

Location: Student Success Center Room 2A, Houston Cole Library  

Total Event Time: 1:30-4:30

Faculty Panelists:

  • Christy Burns - Distinguished Instructor of English
  • Dr. Allen Gilbert - Assistant Professor of Kinesiology
  • Jocelyn Moore - Associate Professor, Biology
  • Dr. Allison Newton - Assistant Professor of Emergency Management
  • Dr. Barbie Norvell - Professor Early Childhood Education
  • Amy Simon - Instructor, Department of Management & Marketing
  • Kimberly Westbrooks - Associate Professor, Business & Social Sciences Librarian

Student Success Panelists:

  • Dr. Janet Bavonese, Assistant Vice Provost for Academic & Career Advising
  • Keaton Glass, Director of First & Second Year Experience
  • Courtney Peppers, Director of Learning Services & Analytics
  • Michelle Green, Director of Student-Athlete Development
  • Dr. Sean Creech, Director of Disability Resources
  • Debra James, Director of Academic Support and Success
  • Todd Garrison, Director of College to Career Initiatives

 Student Panelists:

  • Dakota Heathcock-SSC Tutor - (Mathematics major) 
  • Katherine Peek-SSC Tutor - (Collaborative Education major) 
  • Tavaria MaCalaah Johnson – Supplemental Instruction Leader, Freshman Forums member and past mentor - (Pre Health-Professional Biology and Spanish major) 
  • Luke Reed – GO! Leader, Freshman Forum past mentor, Lambda Sigma past president, Tutor, Supplemental Instruction Leader - (Biology major) 
  • Victoria (Tori) Taylor – SAC, NAACP, NPHC, Freshman Forum mentor, Freshman Forum past member - (Family and Consumer Sciences major) 
  • Emiyah Pace-Summer Bridge/Learning Services Teaching Assistant - (Nursing major) 
  • Natalie Patterson – GTA - (English major)


After registering for one of the meetings, be on the lookout for a calendar invite in your JSU Gem account.