Academic Opportunities and Support
The Engineering Learning Initiatives provide these academic support programs.
Engineering Learning Initiatives enhances the learning environment in the College of Engineering by providing opportunities for students to engage in collaborative learning, undergraduate research, and peer tutoring. The program also promotes teaching excellence in the college, administering the college’s Teaching Assistant Development Program and training undergraduates to be collaborative learning facilitators and peer tutors.
Engineering Learning Initiatives staff includes:
Lisa Schneider-Bentley, Director
Schneider-Bentley received her Ph.D. in Sociology from Cornell in 1997. Her scholarly work focused on race, class, and gender inequality, and segregation in the labor market. She taught sociology as an assistant professor at Hobart and William Smith Colleges from 1997–1999. Schneider-Bentley then took the position of senior director of research and evaluation at PowerUP, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to expanding technology access and providing youth development resources for underserved youth. Before joining Engineering Learning Initiatives in December 2002, Schneider-Bentley evaluated PowerUP’s development of more than 950 after-school technology centers in underserved communities across the United States and designed a program guide for Save the Children's after school technology programs providing digital literacy standards and cooperative, project-based learning experiences for program staff and youth participants.
Anne Poduska, Associate Director
Poduska received her Ph.D. in theoretical chemistry from Cornell University, with a science communication minor. She draws upon experience as an international student peer mentor at Macalester College and as an undergraduate and graduate teaching assistant for English and chemistry classes, respectively, to promote peer-to-peer learning. From teaching English in China and conducting science outreach activities in Bangalore, India while she was a NSF-funded graduate and postdoctoral chemistry researcher, she is adept at communicating in intercultural settings. In Poduska's prior role as the Graduate & International Student Career Advisor at Cornell, she employed active learning approaches in her presentations and workshops. She also relies on her knowledge of assessment and the peer review process for grant competitions from her role as the Senior Program Associate for the Research Competitiveness Program at the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Kristin Tewksbury, Administrative Coordinator
Tewksbury recently came to Cornell after working for ten years in Student Services at Stanford University in the Schools of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences and Humanities & Sciences where she advised students and supported peer advisor programming. She has a Bachelor's degree in Music Therapy, a Master's in Organizational Management, and a background in social work, with a focus in youth services. Tewksbury is excited to be part of the ELI Program and to work with Engineering students.