Ten years ago last month, Steve accepted the challenge of fixing the pervasive and wide-spread problems in classrooms that had existed for years on the Twin Cities campus. As the founding director, he set a vision and successfully created OCM as an accountable and innovative organization that has produced tremendous outcomes in all facets of the classroom experience, and that has made a great positive difference for students and faculty.
Under Steve's guidance and leadership, OCM has implemented many innovations and initiatives that are now part of our normal classroom landscape. His focus on accountability, deliverables, and a systematic planning approach has been balanced by constant awareness of developing faculty friendly technology and a teacher-focused support system. He has helped develop an expert classroom staff that is a great resource for the University today and in the future.
Innovations include the Projection Capable Classroom (PCC) technology system in 98% of all central classrooms; transparent Balanced Scorecard, dashboard and web reporting; a powerful user-oriented classroom web resource; automated scheduling and web-viewers for both central and departmental classrooms; Active Learning Classroom (ALC) designs that are nationally recognized for innovation and excellence; a responsive Support Hotline system with viable emergency help for teachers in classrooms, and significant improvements in both room utilization and physical condition of all central classrooms.
Steve's use of leveraging and partnership programs with colleges accelerated the pace of classroom upgrades and improvements, and his forward looking ideas have helped in the planning and construction of future formal and informal learning space on campus.
OCM has been a resounding success, and today this University of Minnesota classroom management model is widely regarded as a best practice enterprise level model for supporting teaching and learning in classrooms. We thank Steve for his voice as classroom champion and advocate, for his many contributions to teaching and learning at the University of Minnesota and for making a lasting positive impact on the lives of students and faculty. We wish Steve all the best in his future endeavors.
Sue Van Voorhis
Director, Academic Support Resources
University of Minnesota