At Austin Community College (ACC) in Texas, Stacey VanderHeiden Güney led the transformation of a former J.C. Penney mall-store space into a technology-rich environment for learning, training, and community engagement.
"First-generation college students going to a traditional campus might feel intimidated or out of place," she said then about the ACCelerator, the high-tech learning center that was honored with the 2015 Campus Technology Innovators Award for IT Infrastructure & Systems. "Nobody has that feeling about going to the mall, even if you don't have money to spend."
Now at WICHE, she takes on a new challenge: leading an initiative to create a more robust and innovative marketplace for digital learning and courseware in U.S. postsecondary education.
Güney recently joined the WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies (WCET) to direct the Digital Learning Solution Network, which aims to increase demand for tools and practices that demonstrate improved outcomes for underserved students. Last May, WCET was awarded a three-year grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to serve as the "backbone" organization for the new network, which Güney will lead while overseeing grantee collaborations, fiduciary management, and other backbone services.
Güney comes to WICHE from Aims Community College in Greeley, Colo., where she was assistant vice president of academic affairs following her role at ACC as director of the ACCelerator.