Dean's Message

  Nira Herrmann
    Nira Herrmann

In Class and Out—Learning Opportunities in Dyson

In Dyson College we pride ourselves on offering an education with a strong liberal arts foundation combined with professional preparation. This translates into a whole lot of teaching that doesn’t happen in the traditional classroom setting. The days when college learning meant long hours in the library reading thick text books are long gone. Today, the world is our students’ classroom. Dyson has embraced the educational innovations of the 21st century.

Our latest innovation—the use of ePortfolios as a passport to learning.  Thanks to Dyson’s Beth Klingner and Linda Anstendig, all Pace students, faculty and staff have online space to store materials they create, including documents, blogs, photos, and video clips— whatever they have created and want to hang onto…and possibly share with others. Our ePortfolio platform, Mahara open source software, allows users to selectively share their information with others or keep it private.  Students looking for internships, coop placements, or jobs can share their resume, examples of their school work, writing samples and other information with prospective employers; they can share photos and videos with family and friends; and they can collect and store materials from their four years at Pace in one convenient place.

As you will read in this issue of the Dyson Digital Digest, our students have numerous opportunities to create interesting materials that showcase their learning in and outside of the classroom.  Our performing arts students recently got an amazing educational opportunity to work on the soon to be released film “When Harry Tries to Marry.” The movie was filmed on Pace’s New York City campus and stars Performing Arts Assistant Professor Grant Kretchik, student Rahul Rai, and dozens of other Dyson students in supporting roles.

Dyson students also get hands-on experience through clinical and internship experiences, like those which Senior Associate Dean Joseph Franco oversees in the psychology program. They also get a chance to research side-by-side with faculty, for example, through the Dyson Summer Student-Faculty Research scholarships.

In the classroom, we offer many Learning Communities: paired courses that cover inter-related subjects and present the views of faculty from different disciplines with different perspectives. And students dive right into history in Reacting to the Past courses.

The hands-on opportunities lead to real world success as evidenced by Annette Courniotes’s story, reflecting how faculty influenced her life and enabled her to explore the personal history of her family in a unique and moving way.

I hope this issue of the Digest reminds you of your own different experiences on campus and of all the avenues students can explore through a liberal arts education coupled to professional preparation and hands-on learning experiences.

Best regards,

Nira Herrmann

Nira Herrmann, PhD
Dean, Dyson College of Arts and Sciences
Read more on the Dean’s Blog