In the article "How One College Helps All Students Gain Digital Skills," Chronicle of Higher Education reporter Beckie Supiano interviews Bryn Mawr Chief Information Officer Gina Siesing, Trustee Teresa Wallace '79, faculty members Michelle Francl and Shiamin Kwa, and student Vinny Ong '22 for a deep dive on Bryn Mawr's Digital Competencies program.
The article begins with Ong, who took part in a Library and Information Technology Services internship over the summer. She took the internship more for her interest in the linguistics project she took part in than to gain specific digital skills.
From the article:
"That is exactly how Bryn Mawr’s Digital Competencies program is supposed to work. No, the Pennsylvania college doesn’t expect all of its students to take a computer-science course, as Ong plans to. But her experience illustrates something important about the college’s approach. Some students may seek out training in digital skills. But even those who don’t will encounter the competencies over and over again, because they’re baked into courses, internships, and campus events. And that encounter is something they can build on, refining those skills and adding new ones as their college careers unfold."
Supiano then turns to Francl, Wallace, and Siesing for background on the program, how it's being implemented, and its goals, before finishing the piece with a look at how Kwa was able to incorporate digital skills into her Chinese-literature course thanks to the program. Supiano writes about a translation app Kwa had used personally that would have been a challenge for her to train all of her students on.
From the article:
"But because of the support Bryn Mawr offers professors, Kwa doesn’t have to figure out this kind of thing on her own. She has applied for—and received—seed funding from the college to support the incorporation of digital elements into two of her courses, including the Chinese-literature one, which since 2015 has included a session in which students learn to use the translation app.
"On the day Kwa used the app, a member of the college’s IT-support staff came to the class with the 15 or so iPads she would need charged and ready to go, and stayed for a while to make sure no one had trouble."
"How One College Helps All Students Gain Digital Skills" is part of The Chronicle of Higher Education special report Innovators: The Digital Student.
All images courtesy of Tracie Van Auken and are not to be reused without permission.