Today: BWRC Conference

Friday May 13, 9am-4pm
Sea Level Rise and Brooklyn's Jamaica Bay Communities
Virtual Conference

The Brooklyn Waterfront Research Center (BWRC) invites you to their annual conference: “Sea Level Rise and Brooklyn’s Jamaica Bay Communities”    

Today, Friday, May 13, 2022, 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM ET  

Free – RSVP for Zoom link

Join BWRC this Friday for a full day of online panels and presentations!
This year marks the ten-year anniversary of Superstorm Sandy, a time when many of the city’s coastal vulnerabilities became glaringly apparent. Since then New York has taken major strides in making the coastline more resilient, yet immediate and long-term risks associated with global climate change and sea-level rise remain. Recent research on sea-level rise outlines the possibility, some would say probability, of the inundation, by the end of the century, of vulnerable communities along the Brooklyn waterfront, especially those along Jamaica Bay.  

This full-day conference will explore these possibilities and the questions they raise for Jamaica Bay: What is the science behind sea level rise predictions? How will sea level rise affect the communities surrounding Jamaica Bay? What actions are underway and what further actions are being planned to mitigate these impacts? The main question the conference will address is: What can be done if none of the planned measures prevents the inundation of Jamaica Bay’s vulnerable neighborhoods?  

Leading these explorations will be local officials, community activists, business leaders, scientists, and academics. Learn more on our website and see the schedule:

BWRC 2022 Conference Schedule
available as pdf at https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/openroad/files/2022/05/BWRC-2022-Conference-Schedule.pdf
Download the schedule

PLEASE NOTE: Due to the ongoing health and logistical concerns of the pandemic, the conference will be taking place entirely online. RSVP to receive the Zoom link

In the Spotlight: Open Pedagogy

In conjunction with our first Open Pedagogy Event of the semester, this week and the next we’re spotlighting our in-house site, Open Pedagogy on the OpenLab. This site operates as a forum where OpenLab community members can ask questions and stimulate discussion related to teaching and learning on the OpenLab and in open digital environments more generally. This site is a good place to find ideas for digital pedagogy assignments, access information on best practices and tips for open digital pedagogy, and engage other faculty about how teaching on the OpenLab changes their curriculum and classroom environments and relations.

In conjunction with this site, our OpenLab team hosts Open Pedagogy Events, organized around particular themes and concerns related to teaching in open digital environments and more specifically with teaching on the OpenLab. This Thursday (3/31) we’re hosting our first Open Pedagogy event of the semester, on Ungrading. Ungrading and its accompanying strategies offer one way to mitigate the harm and exhaustion of the pandemc. Ungrading is essentially student-centered and student-led, demanding that we engage critically with the power dynamics of the classroom. We began our discuss on its potential and its application to digital pedagogy last semester and will be continuing this spring. We will be joined by some wonderful guest speakers.

The event will be held via Zoom from 4:00-6:00pm. Visit the event posting for more information and to RSVP! We hope to see you there!

In conclusion, we encourage to join the site, and follow along and participate in the conversation!

In the Spotlight: City Tech Lit Festival

This week we’re spotlighting the upcoming City Tech Literary Arts Festival

An annual event for 41 years, the Lit Fest features a contemporary writer performing their work and holding a Q&A portion. City Tech students also perform their work after submitting and going through a selection process.

Join City Tech student writers and the poet Layli Long Soldier to share ideas and creative work.

Thursday, March 24, 4:30 pm EST on ZOOM.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

LAYLI LONG SOLDIER

Photo credit: Layli Long Soldier

Biography

Layli Long Soldier is an Oglala Lakota poet, writer, feminist and activist. She is the author of the chapbook Chromosomory (2010) and the full-length collection Whereas (2017), winner of the National Books Critics Circle award and a finalist for the National Book Award. She has also won the National Artist Fellowship from the Arts and Cultures Foundation, the Whiting Writer’s Award, and a Lannan Literary Fellowship.  In 2012, her participatory installation, Whereas We Respond, was featured on the Pine Ridge Reservation. She lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Poems

National Poetry Foundation: 

About Layli Long Soldier

From WHEREAS

Obligations 2

Talent

Academy of American Poets:

Urning

Whereas When Offered

This event is sponsored by: Coordinated Undergraduate Education (CUE), City Tech Student Government Association, and the New York City College of Technology. 

In the Spotlight: Request a workshop

This week, we spotlight the OpenLab “request a workshop” feature! Each semester, the OpenLab team offers workshops on topics that members often ask about. But there are always other topics, other interest, and other scheduling needs. The OpenLab team welcomes requests for focused workshops for the faculty, staff, or students in your departments, offices, and other stakeholder groups at City Tech. These targeted workshops can meet the needs of your group .

Not sure what might be of interest and/or use to your faculty? Here are some suggestions:

  • Using WordPress’s Block Editor
  • Collaborative Digital Annotation on the OpenLab
  • Using OERs and other open resources on the OpenLab
  • Sharing & Remixing Pedagogy: Rethinking Copyright and Attribution on the OpenLab
  • Supporting Multimedia Pedagogy with the OpenLab
  • Fostering Community through OpenLab interactions

If you are interested in having the OpenLab lead workshops for your department, office, club, initiative,or group, fill out our “Request a Workshop” form. Your responses will give us a better idea of your group’s size, schedule, and needs. Once we receive your request we’ll evaluate it and work with you to develop a workshop plan.

Please note that these workshops are accepted on a rolling basis, so get your requests in early if you want to have the workshop this semester.  

We look forward to working with you!

Welcome to Spring 2022!

Welcome Back! We have new support opportunities!

As you sink into your semesterly routine, we wanted to make you aware of support opportunities :

  • The Spring 2022 schedule for OpenLab support is now available:
    • Students, faculty, and staff can sign up for open hours and one-on-one appointments to ask specific questions or ask to learn more about topics such as getting started, using the OpenLab for courses, or how to use a tool  or pedagogical approach. 
    • We have workshops slated for this week, including on Getting Started on the OpenLab, and using the Block Editor on the OpenLab. 
    • Any group can request a workshop!
  •  Faculty members, have any questions about getting your course site ready for the semester? See helpful tips posted here: Teaching with the OpenLab.
  • Are you a student getting ready to use the OpenLab this semester? See the helpful OpenLab for Students module. If you are faculty you can refer your students to this module as well.
  • Get inspired by what City Tech has done on the OpenLab by looking through our past In the Spotlight posts.
  • The OpenLab released several new features this year, including an option to save Courses, Projects, Clubs and Portfolios to a list of “favorites,” and a new quiz-making plug-in. You can also now add students in bulk to your course by using a list of student emails: our help documentation will walk you through how to do this step-by-step.

The OpenLab, City Tech’s open digital platform for teaching, learning, and collaboration, offers virtual open hours, online support, and technical guidance throughout the year.

The OpenLab team also offers a selection of Help materials for Distance Education, plus Courses, Projects, Clubs, and Portfolios. Contact us with questions: openlab@citytech.cuny.edu!

In the Spotlight: The Sixth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium


This week, we spotlight the OpenLab site for Science Fiction at City Tech! The Sixth Annual City Tech Science Fiction Symposium will take place on Thursday, December 9, 2021, 9:00AM-5:00PM. This year’s event is on “Access and SF.” In addition to paper presentation sessions and a research discussion panel, Analog Science Fiction and Fact Magazine is hosting a writer’s panel featuring Alec Nevala-Lee, Marie Vibbert, and Chelsea Obodoechina, and announcing the winner of the first Analog Award for Emerging Black Voices. The event will take place via a Zoom Webinar, and it is free and open to the public.

The program and registration information is available on the Science Fiction at City Tech OpenLab Site. This year’s symposium is co-organized by Jill Belli, Wanett Clyde, Jason W. Ellis, Lucas Kwong, and A. Lavelle Porter.

In the Spotlight: Plan Week 2021

PLAN Week Site Header Image

PLAN week is upon us! From November 1-5, students can meet with advisors to plan their next steps at City Tech. The PLAN week OpenLab site has all the information you need, “from choosing classes and learning how to register to finding out where to get support and make connections within the college.” 

You can make also learn more by going to academic advising website. The PLAN week committee recommends you spend 20-30 minutes a day this week planning your academic trajectory. You can start today by watching this short video introduction to advising.

Make sure to check the site out, and happy planning!

In the Spotlight: CMCE Career Site

Header Image for CMCE Career Site: features college graduates and construction and engineering workers against the backdrop of an urban landscape.
Header Image for CMCE Career Site

This week, we spotlight the excellent CMCE Career OpenLab site, which offers “career information and opportunities for construction management and civil engineering students and graduates.” Overall, the site offers a fantastic model of a job resource for City Tech students, both showcasing the work of City Tech alumni and directing current students to job postings and additional resources. I highlight some of what makes the site so effective below:

An engaging, media-rich home page: Instagram, Facebook and Twitter have gotten all of us used to a long, vertical scroll. That said, the best way to keep a reader’s attention with this format is to break up chunks of texts with images or other forms of multimedia. The CMCE Career home page does this very well. For example:

  • Below the header image, the site includes an important note to students that is bolded and in a bigger font to catch their attention. The note reads: “Whether you are just getting started, are currently working, want to switch from field to office work or office to field work, or are switching industries entirely, there are people like you in our department and among our alumni.” It foreshadows what students will find on this site, which is alumni stories, job and internships postings, and information about CMCE.
  • A second menu below this introductory text allows the reader to jump to the section of the site/ home page they would like to visit: Jobs & Internships; Where CMCES Work; Alumni Stories; Alumni News.
  • Spotlight boxes with CMCE “talking heads” give students a compelling visual and brief descriptions of possible job options and alumni success stories. 
  • A search functionality at the top of the page allows readers to easily find what they are looking for once they’ve skimmed the home page.
  • Pie-charts and graphs provide visual breakdowns of CMCE career paths, helping break-up long chunks of texts.

The Jobs & Internships page takes advantage of the block format to direct students toward public agencies and private companies that have job opportunities. Each company has its own block on the page: its title is bolded, the full description of the company is prominently included, and a button links you out to the company’s site. Note that this lay-out makes it easy to digest information. It is also more effective than simply featuring a bulleted list of hyperlinks to various companies. We encourage OpenLab users to to follow this kind of model when linking out to other resources: it is always more engaging for readers to have the full description of what they are being linked out to than to just see a link on a page.

The footer gives more information about the site’s creator, A.M. Sowder, including a brief bio and professional headshot. But it also features recent news from the department, linking out to blog posts updating visitors on the activities of faculty, students and alumni. This is a great use of widget space: remember that footers appear on all site pages, which means they are unlikely to get overlooked.

These are just some of the many innovative features of the CMCE Career site. It is a great model of a jobs and internship site that is reader-friendly and replete with information. 

In The Spotlight: The Hospitality Garden is Back

Lettuce and herbs grown by the Garden Club at City Tech’s Hospitality Garden.

This week, we spotlight The Hospitality Garden, “a project that teaches students and faculty about the excitement and nuance of growing flowers and vegetables for the Culinary and Pastry Labs at NYC College of Technology.” The Garden Club tends to the garden, which was on hiatus the past 1.5 years, but it is back in action this semester. Students who are interested in volunteering are invited to help set up the new Hydroponic system. Currently the club is working with the new technology to plant lettuce and herb seeds. 

Some other noteworthy aspect of the site:

  • The home page is the project’s blogroll, meaning that posts appear there in reverse chronological order. Prof. Mark Hellerman, who runs the project, uses regular blog posts to keep members abreast of garden news and, most importantly, club meeting times. The club currently meets during club hours, from 12:45 -2:30pm on Thursdays, in Namm 201. Note that these blog posts are a smart way to remind members about club or project meetings. Another strategy is to feature club meeting information in the sidebar in the widget, such that it will be displayed on every page of your site.
  • The tag line–or the text featured next to or below the site title–is customized. It reads “Growing flowers and vegetables for the dining room, and for fun.” This tells the readers precisely what the project is about and is exactly how a tag line should be used. Because it’s more of a detail than a prominent feature on OpenLab sites, members sometimes forget to customize their tag lines and end up with the default text that reads “A City Tech OpenLab site.” This isn’t nearly as descriptive as what the Hospitality Garden has drafted. As a reminder, if you would like to customize your tag line, you can do so by going to Dashboard > Appearance > Customize > Site Identity. You will see an option to type in free text for your tag line.
  • The site’s menu links to a photo gallery. The photos featured show students and faculty planting herbs, vegetables and fruit on the rooftop garden, with the Brooklyn waterfront in the background. It is, indeed, a very picturesque setting. It also features photographs of the finished products– pastries and appetizers the Hospitality Department has made from the Garden Club’s produce. Note that the reader gets a vivid sense of what the club does by scrolling through these pictures and is given the (visual) context needed to imagine themselves volunteering for the club. This is a fantastic way to draw people into your work and projects.

Are you interested in joining the Garden Club and Hospitality Garden Project? Visit the site to learn more!

In The Spotlight: The HSI Committee

A group picture of faculty and staff serving on the Hispanic Serving Institution Committee.

This week, we celebrate Hispanic heritage month by spotlighting the Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) Committee’s new site! The site is clean and well-organized and can serve as a model for other academic committees. From left to right, its menu features: a static home page which describes the committee’s goals; a page that answers the question What is an HSI?; a page About the Committee; and a page with additional Resources. Note how intuitive this set-up is: it briefly gives the information needed to understand the committee’s purpose before offering in-depth descriptions of the context in which the committee is working, the faculty and staff serving on the team, and additional readings and support opportunities for those who are interested. Note also that the header image features a group picture of the faculty and staff serving on the committee: this is a lovely personal touch!

We’d also like to draw your attention to the events page, as there many coming up for HSI Week 2021. Today, September 13, there will be two HSI forums: one for faculty, staff and administrators and the other for students and families. You can sign up for these forums here.

Finally, we want to highlight the committee’s recommendations for City Tech, which include doubling the number of students who complete their associate degrees or transfer to baccalaureate programs in three years and achieving a six-year graduation rate of 50% for baccalaureate program students. To do this, the committee recommends City Tech recognize the importance of having a representative size of Hispanic faculty and offer mentorship that is tailored to the needs of Hispanic Students.

All-in-all, this is a richly informative and easy to navigate site. Check it out for inspiration and mark your calendars with any HSI Week events you’d like to attend.