main navigation
my pace
Faculty Institute

Keynote Presenters and Sessions

Keynote Presenters

James P. Purdy

James P. Purdy

Associate professor of English/Writing Studies
and Director of the University Writing Center at Duquesne University
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

James Purdy's research examines digital research and writing practices for scholars at all levels. He has published in College Composition and Communication, Computers and Composition, Computers and Composition Online, First Monday, The Journal of Literacy and Technology, Kairos, Pedagogy, and Profession, as well as in several edited collections.

With co-author Joyce R. Walker, he won the 2011 Ellen Nold Award for the Best Article in Computers and Composition Studies and the 2008 Kairos Best Webtext Award.

With Randall McClure, he edited two collections: The New Digital Scholar: Exploring and Enriching the Research and Writing Practices of NextGen Students (Information Today, 2013), which was awarded the Silver Medal for Education in the Commentary/Theory Category for the 2014 Independent Publisher Book Awards, and The Next Digital Scholar: A Fresh Approach to the Common Core State Standards in Research and Writing (Information Today, 2014), which was awarded the Bronze Medal for Education in the Commentary/Theory Category for the 2015 Independent Publisher Book Awards and was a finalist in the Educational/Academic Category at the 2014 USA Best Books Awards.

With Dànielle Nicole DeVoss, he is also co-editor of the online edited volume Making Space: Writing Instruction, Infrastructure, and Multiliteracies (University of Michigan Press, forthcoming 2016).

Tuesday, May 17th in Pleasantville we are honored to have James Purdy speak about the literacy across the disciplines.


Niki Fjeldal

Associate Director for Orientation & Transitions at Pace University-Pleasantville

Niki Fjeldal is currently working on her Doctoral of Education in Executive Leadership and in her current role at Pace University coordinates a number of programming initiatives including Orientation, Welcome Week, Homecoming and Senior Week. Niki graduated from State University of New York College at Buffalo with a Bachelor of Arts in Public Communications. After working in Orientation and First-Year Programs for a year, she pursued a Master of Science in College Student Personnel Administration from Canisius College. After receiving her Master’s degree, Niki moved to Georgia where she worked professionally in Orientation and First-Year Programs for 2 years.

Wednesday, May 18th in Pleasantville we are honored to have Niki Fjeldal speak about Generation Z.


Keynote Session

James Purdy

Literacies in a Digital World: Approaches to Teaching Tomorrow’s Digital Scholar

In the workshop following his keynote, James Purdy will elaborate on the six pedagogical possibilities for literacies instruction that he offered in his talk. Operating from the premise that writing facilitates learning, this workshop will describe six in-class writing activities and associated learning goals that new and experienced teachers can incorporate into classes from any discipline or level. Faculty will leave with ideas for writing tasks that they can implement in the classroom. He will also entertain questions and, as time allows, further discuss the research on students’ writing, research, and reading behaviors that serve as exigencies for his proposed approach to literacy.

Niki Fjedal

Faculty and staff have finally recognized the lifestyles and learning styles of the millennial students, and have worked and interacted with them for a few years. Now comes Generation Z! A generation that is considered to be the first true digital natives.

This generation is private, entrepreneurial, hyper-aware, and technology reliant. They are more realistic and believe that they need to keep learning new skills to stay reverent. To them, social media isn’t about Instagram and Facebook but about Snapchat and Whisper – they prefer to communicate face-to-face via video rather than text messaging and email in contrast to the Millennials. They are also gravitating more and more towards online education.

What does that mean for their college experience? How do the personal and technical qualities of Generation Z impact the way faculty/staff interact with the students? Are colleges and universities ready to take on this new generation’s expectations and teach them?

During this keynote session there will be a conversation about Generation Z’s characteristics, family relations, and social media and learning/instructional/technological needs. Will we survive the challenges that another generation offers us?