Jeff Selingo to speak at Capella Education Company All-Employee Meeting

June 22, 2015

On Thursday, all Capella, RDI and Sophia employees will come together—in person and virtually—for our annual all-employee meeting. This year’s theme is Capella Proud: We’re Changing the Game.

Jeff Selingo

Jeff Selingo

I’m particularly excited about this year’s meeting; Jeff Selingo, best-selling author and award-winning columnist, will be our keynote speaker.

I’m sure most of you are familiar with Jeff’s work and impressive resume, but in case you’re not: Jeff helps parents and higher education leaders imagine the college and university of the future. He is the author of “College (Un)Bound: The Future of Higher Education and What It Means for Students,” a New York Times bestselling education book in 2013, and “MOOC U: Who Is Getting the Most Out of Online Education and Why.”

Jeff is a professor of practice at Arizona State University, where he’s leading the design of the Academy for Innovative Higher Education Leadership. In addition, he’s a regular contributor to The Washington Post and The Chronicle of Higher Education, and was the former top editor of The Chronicle, where he worked for 16 years in a variety of reporting and editing roles. His writing has also appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and Slate.

Capella employees – be sure to show why you’re #CapellaProud throughout the week. Give a shout-out to a colleague, manager, learner, or just tell the world why you’re proud to work at Capella.

See you Thursday!

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(PODCAST) DNP learner Sarah on the future of nursing

June 12, 2015

I was lucky to have the opportunity to speak with current Capella DNP learner Sarah Hall-Shavoy for today’s podcast. Sarah is in the first quarter of her program, and was the (well-deserved) recipient of a full-ride scholarship to pursue her DNP! We’re excited to have her as part of the Capella community.

In today’s podcast, we talk about what drove Sarah to enter the nursing field, her interesting career and current position as Magnet Program Director at Emory St. Joseph’s, and what she thinks the future of the nursing holds. Sarah also gives advice on how to find balance between the demands of work, school, and family.

I really enjoyed speaking with Sarah. She is very thoughtful and has an inspiring story. Thanks for your time, Sarah, and I look forward to hearing how your DNP program progresses.

You can find our conversation here.


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(PODCAST) Conversation with PhD Graduate and PMF Finalist Dr. Twanna Carter

June 9, 2015

For today’s podcast, I had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Twanna Carter, a recent Capella PhD Human Services graduate. Please join me in congratulating Twanna on her recent accomplishment – she was named a 2015 Presidential Management Fellowship finalist! The Presidential Management Fellows program is a prestigious flagship leadership development program at the entry level for advanced degree candidates. We are very excited that Capella had 5 PMF finalists this year. (Be sure to also check out my podcast with Capella grad and 2014 PMF fellow, Mike Horgen.)

Dr. Twanna Carter

Dr. Twanna Carter

Dr. Carter works in human services, is a licensed counselor, and has a private practice where she counsels veterans. In our conversation, she speaks about growing up in a military family, her educational journey, and her counseling practice. She has an inspiring story and is making a tremendous impact on the lives of our veterans. Listen to the podcast here.


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(PODCAST) Discussing competency-based education with Amy Laitinen

June 2, 2015

Today’s podcast is with Amy Laitinen, Deputy Director at the New America Foundation. Those in the competency-based education space are probably familiar with Amy as she has spent a lot of time working on CBE at the Department of Education and New America.  A few years ago, she wrote a paper called, “Cracking the Credit Hour,” which helped set the stage for regulatory momentum surrounding competency-based education and innovative education models, like FlexPath.

Amy Laitinen, New America Foundation Deputy Director

In the podcast, Amy and I talk about her upbringing, her time at Teach for America, her progression into working on policy aimed to help alleviate poverty, and ultimately, her work in higher education. We discuss the opportunities and challenges with competency-based education and federal regulation surrounding those programs. Amy also shares her insights on the importance and difficulty in obtaining hard data for student outcomes in higher ed and her advocacy for student-unit records.

I hope you find the conversation as interesting as I did. We had to end the call after about 20 minutes, but I plan to have her back again in the fall. Take a listen here.


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Are You a Game Changer?

May 29, 2015

Today’s guest post is by Julie Smolich, vice president and general manager of the College of Business, Technology, and Undergraduate Studies.

Yesterday, I was honored to attend the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal’s 18th Annual Women in Business Awards. The event, held in downtown Minneapolis, celebrated the contributions and successes of 50 influential businesswomen and featured Capella University’s Executive Dean of External Relations and Partnerships and Dean Emeritus, Barbara Butts Williams, Ph.D. as the keynote speaker.

Barbara Butts Williams, Ph.D. speaking at the Women in Business Awards.

Barbara Butts Williams, Ph.D. speaking at the Women in Business Awards.

Barbara’s speech was inspiring—she shared her personal journey growing up in a working class family and the impact it has had on her life and career. She challenged women to be “game changers” and encouraged the honorees to continue to support each other to create a community where women can succeed. She reminded women to speak up in the workplace and take charge of their career path, “Don’t let others define your value; they’ll always underestimate your worth.”

Knowing Barbara professionally and personally for many years, I was delighted to celebrate her extraordinary talents—her many contributions to the Minneapolis/St. Paul community are unwavering.

Capella leaders at the Awards lunch.

Capella leaders at the Awards lunch.

Several colleagues also attended to support and cheer on Barbara during the event, including:

  • Capella President, Scott Kinney
  • Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Mary Miller
  • Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, Pete Ramstad
  • Vice President and General Manager, School of Nursing and Health Sciences, Jennifer Hoff
  • Vice President and General Counsel, Renee Jackson
  • Vice President of Learner Services and Operations, Tonia Teasley
  • Dean, School of Undergraduate Studies, Genevieve Feliu
  • Dean of Technology, School of Business and Technology, Sue Talley
  • Director of Employer Solutions, Rebecca Miller


The social media conversation taking place during the event was quite inspiring. Take a peek at the celebratory #MSPBJwomen stories here.

Tweet. Share. Connect.

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