General Sessions


Building Inclusiveness Upon a Foundation of Diversity

This interactive keynote presentation will open with a description of Rutgers University’s strategies to build true inclusiveness based upon a strong foundation of diversity in people, educational approaches, and social organizations. The presentation will be followed by a moderated panel discussion that will provide opportunities for open conversation about the challenges encountered in doing the hard work of developing a truly inclusive, as well as a truly diverse, society.

  • Karen StubausKaren R. Stubaus, Executive Vice Chancellor for Administration, Rutgers University

Dr. Karen R. Stubaus is Executive Vice Chancellor for Administration at Rutgers University–New Brunswick.

A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Douglass College, Dr. Stubaus received her Ph.D. in seventeenth-century American history from Rutgers.  Responsible for a broad array of academic, budgetary, strategic, and policy matters across the university.  Dr. Stubaus has also been a leader in increasing the diversity of the faculty and in promoting women’s leadership at all levels of the institution.  

Dr. Stubaus teaches whenever she is able in the School of Arts and Sciences Department of American Studies and the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, as well as in the Rutgers Ph.D program on Higher Education.  Her favorite course is Death and Dying in American History, which her students note “is not nearly as grim as expected.” 

  • Moderator: Richard J. Novak, VP of Continuing Studies, Rutgers University


The Evolving Regional Workforce: How the Workforce is Adapting to Gen Z and Young Millennials

Beginning with a snapshot of job trends both nationally and globally, this presentation will forecast evolving industries and sectors of growth as well as how these developments are fueling the demand for alternative credentials. Data sources will include nation-wide benchmarking and employer data as well as a special focus on regional workforce elements.

  • Jim Fong

    Jim Fong, Director, UPCEA Center for Research and Strategy

Jim Fong is the founding director of UPCEA’s Center for Research and Strategy. In his role, Mr. Fong has analyzed demographic, occupational, technological and societal trends and data to help the higher education community better serve the adult and corporate learner.  As the Center’s director, he works closely with dozens of colleges and universities annually in new program development initiatives, enrollment management and marketing process analyses and the review of online and continuing education portfolios.

Prior to joining UPCEA, Mr. Fong worked as a higher education strategic marketing and CRM consultant and researcher for two firms and prior to that was the Director of Marketing, Research and Planning for Penn State Outreach.  At Penn State Outreach, he was responsible for strategic marketing, marketing management, research, creative and database teams.  Mr. Fong played a major role in the early launch of Penn State’s World Campus by assessing new program needs and the development of marketing strategies and systems. 

Jim holds an M.B.A., an M.S. in Applied Statistics and a B.S. in Mathematics, all from The University of Vermont.  In 2004, UPCEA awarded him the Adelle Robertson Award as its Continuing Professional Educator for the year.  That year, he also received the Mid-Atlantic Region’s Distinguished Service Award.

The Universe of Alternative Credentials

Business, industry, and changing demographics suggest the demand for traditional four year degrees will remain flat or decline, while alternative credentials will increase. Suppliers of alternative credentialing can come from a number of places, but will higher education keep pace? This presentation will showcase essential elements of the Alternative Credential landscape, including foundation support, advocacy for badging and micro-credentialing, institutional responses, and benchmarking data which defines the emerging trends in alternative credentials.

  • Bob Hansen

    Bob Hansen, CEO, UPCEA

Dr. Robert J. Hansen was named Chief Executive Officer of the University Professional & Continuing Education Association in September 2010. Under Hansen’s leadership, UPCEA has grown by 125% in the past six years. He established a number of initiatives targeting the association’s unique role in online leadership and management under the umbrella of the National Council for Online Leadership: the Summit for Online Leadership and Administration, the Online Leadership Roundtable for chief online learning officers, and the UPCEA Hallmarks of Excellence in Online Leadership. He also established the UPCEA Hallmarks of Excellence in Professional and Continuing Education, advancing two frameworks to provide a set of standards that reflect the ambitions, potential, and importance of units that serve adult learners.

Hansen previously served as Associate Provost for University Outreach at the University of Southern Maine, a regional public university located in Portland, Maine. Prior to that position, he spent six years at Saint Xavier University of Chicago as Assistant to the President & Secretary of the Corporation, and then as founding Executive Director of Orland Park Campus & Off-Campus Programs. Hansen also previously served as Assistant to the Governor for Education in the administration of former Illinois governor, Jim Edgar. Hansen earned a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Illinois, an M.A. in English Language and Literature from the University of Michigan, and a Ph.D. in English from the University of Notre Dame.

  • Wayne Smutz

    Wayne Smutz, Dean of Continuing Education and UCLA Extension, University of California Los Angeles

Wayne Smutz is Dean of Continuing Education and UCLA Extension at the University of California Los Angeles, a position he has held since October 2013. Prior to his current role, he was the Executive Director of the Penn State World Campus and Associate Vice President of Academic Outreach.

Dr. Smutz also is the Founding Dean of UCLA Global Online.  This campus initiative is focused on establishing UCLA’s presence as a global university with respect to its educational offerings.  It will include both campus based graduate-level programs and UCLA Extension certificates when it launches in Fall 2018.

Dr. Smutz is President of the University Professional and Continuing Education Association (UPCEA) and has served on its board for several years. He previously served on the boards of the Online Learning Consortium (formerly the Sloan Consortium) and the American Distance Education Consortium. He was a faculty member for the Institute for Emerging Leaders in Online Learning in 2011 and 2012. In 2011, he received the Sloan Consortium's John Bourne Award for Individual Achievement in Online Learning while in the same year Penn State's World Campus was awarded the Sloan Consortium's award for Institution Wide Excellence in Online Learning. In addition, he has received national and regional UPCEA programming and engagement awards.

A native Californian, he is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate with a BA in History from the University of California at Berkeley, and the recipient of an MA in political science, along with a PhD in higher education, both from Penn State.

Managing Intercultural Interactions in a Challenging Global Higher Education Landscape

The rapidly diversifying face of colleges and universities in the United States require that we are able to manage intercultural relationships from different backgrounds. We are all working in a multicultural institution, with students, faculty and staff from all over the world.  This makes for a very diverse, vibrant community – and at times, a rather confusing one.  This session will promote intercultural competence and heighten cross-cultural awareness.  You will engage in a presentation and discussion about culture, values, perceptions, and communication styles and cultural patterns of thought and behavior that will help you understand the basic concepts, theories and issues of intercultural communication related to intercultural relationships and how these concepts apply to your personal and professional lives. 

  • Altamirano

    Rodolfo R. Altamirano, Director of the International Student and Scholar Services, University of Pennsylvania

Dr. Rodolfo (Rudie) Altamirano is the director of the International Student and Scholar Services at the University of Pennsylvania.   His main responsibility is to provide overall leadership in determining and implementing organizational and campus-wide strategies including the delivery of quality services and programs to international students, scholars, faculty, staff, exchange visitors and community members.  Dr. Altamirano coordinates Penn’s International Students Advisory Board (ISAB) and International Partners Outreach Group (IPOG). He conceptualized and is spearheading Penn’s Intercultural Leadership Program (ILP).  He has developed creative endeavors and innovative programs to advocate for international education and intercultural learning. He has previously served in international education leadership positions at Michigan State University and the University of Michigan. He holds a doctoral degree from Michigan State University.    He was elected national Chair of KCISSS (Knowledge Community for International Students and Scholars
He was a recipient of the International Education Administrators Fulbright award. He has presented and conducted more than a hundred immigration, cross-cultural communication and conflict resolution workshops nationally and internationally.  He has developed creative strategies and innovative programs to advocate for international education and intercultural learning. He enjoys traveling to different cultures because of the colorful educational experience that he gains from these journeys. He cherishes meeting students from all corners of the world because of the cross-cultural learning opportunities that are within his grasp. On the other hand, He savors sharing his cultural experiences not only through formal workshops that he conducts but also through the informal interactions that he has with the students, scholars, staff and faculty. He is greatly fascinated with learning the cultures and languages of the world. He and his wife have three beautiful daughters. 

The Value of the UPCEA Emerging Leaders Program: Enhancing Leadership Skills; Expanding Professional Networks

We’ve all heard about the importance of creating a strong professional network, and that you should build it before you need it. Easy to conceptualize and harder to implement. The UPCEA Emerging Leaders program is an excellent opportunity to build relationships with other professional, continuing, and online education professionals while gaining leadership skills and tackling a project which can benefit your institution. This panel presentation will include personal experience and insights from alumnae of the Emerging Leadership program, from the current and future facilitator and how it helped them to be more involved in UPCEA. Examples of how they have continued to network will be provided.

  • Carolyn Callaghan, Shippensburg University

  • Dawn Coder, Penn State University

  • Maggie Place, Widener University

  • Nicole Westrick, Temple University

  • Ana-Rita Mayol-Cabassa, University of Pennsylvania

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