The Measure of Success

I was in a two-hour strategic communications session on Wednesday. The director of the communications team was leading us through a brainstorming session. He asked the group, "What has your unit had success with lately?" I sat there and began ticking off a million things:

  • IOLab
  • Faculty engagment
  • Math 33 Studio
  • Chem 111 Lab explorations
  • and more...

I couldn't raise my hand to discuss because I felt like I had too many.

"Our team is just awesome and you should want to work with us!" 

That is what I want to convey to the world. But I'm an introvert and shouted this inside my head, because that's what introverts do.

The meeting was relevant and very productive. I ambled back down to my team to share with them, and stumbled upon this.


It could be generically termed "Creative Chaos."

My heart leapt into my chest.

"This," I said, "this is the sign of our success--that we are doing things right."

In our team space sat seven people. Seven people who belonged to three different colleges. One, who was a faculty member. Four, who are progammers. Three with instructional design experience. All of them were teaching or learning from each other.

Nobody was better than anyone. All were in a space of exploration, safety, and innovation.

Our university is in an active pursuit of "transforming education." There are 9 committees broken into atleast 30 sub-committees...all who are producing recommendations to create atleast 60 more sub-sub committees.

I looked upon this scene today to see something that is so rarely organically seen. A group of 7 people coming together---to teach and to learn--all with the goal of creating something amazing for students. All with the goal of putting students first.

This, my friends, is totally transformative education.