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A Higher Digital Podcast

Exploring the new Whys…in Higher Ed

Higher education is changing, and for good reason. The need for improved student experiences, better-enabled faculty, greater equity in both access and outcomes, increased automation, and more engaged leadership represents a collective necessity that is mothering tremendous invention…and innovation…and inspiration.

In each episode, you will experience hosts and guests pulling for the resurgence of Higher Ed, while identifying and discussing the best practices needed to accomplish that resurgence. Strategy and tactics; planning and execution; people, process, and technology – it’s all on the menu because that’s what’s required to truly transform.

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Episode 38

transformed: People-first Transformation

In this episode, Dionne Curbeam – Deputy CIO at Coppin State University in Baltimore, MD – describes how a “people-first” approach to transformation requires up-front investment but is more sustainable and successful than alternatives.

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Episode 37

transformed: The Psychology of Transformation

In this episode, Jane Close Conoley, PhD – President of California State University, Long Beach – describes how the personal and “ecological” fundamentals of change are incorporated into the culture, decision making and management methods at CSULB.

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Episode 36

transformed: Data-driven Transformation

In this episode, Cyndi Cain Fitzgerald – Manager of Business Intelligence Analytics at Antioch University – describes the use of an internal data taxonomy standard within Antioch’s Ellucian Colleague implementation to support Antioch’s transformation from campus-centric structure to school-centric structure.

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Episode 35

transformed: Taking IT Organizations from Good to Great

In this episode, Joe Gottlieb, President and CTO of Higher Digital, sat down with Jack Suess, Vice President of IT and CIO at the University of Maryland Baltimore Campus, to discuss IT organization transformation through the lens of Jim Collins’ book Good to Great and in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Episode 34

transformed: Driving Organizational Engagement to Facilitate Change

Joe Gottlieb, President and CTO of Higher Digital, sat down with Ed Evans, CIO of Texas A&M University Corpus Christi, to discuss the organizational engagement practices necessary to facilitate sustainable change in the digital era.

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Episode 33

transformed: Transforming the Student Experience Through Evolved Governance, with John Rathje

In this episode, Joe Gottlieb, President and CTO of Higher Digital, sat down with John Rathje, Vice President of Information Services and CIO at Kent State University, to discuss how a continual ‘readiness for change’ mindset combined with mission-driven governance can produce transformational value for the student.

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Episode 32

transformed: Balancing Complex Forces in The California State University System

In this episode, Joe Gottlieb, President and CTO of Higher Digital, sat down with Michael Berman, CIO of the California State University System, to discuss how large state systems can balance common standards with proactive IT service leadership to achieve digital transformation at scale.

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Episode 31

transformed: Gamifying Student Engagement, with Shaunak Roy

In this episode, Joe Gottlieb, President and CTO of Higher Digital, sat down with Shaunak Roy, founder and CEO of Yellowdig, to discuss how gamification and social learning technologies are getting higher engagement.

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Episode 30

transformed: Reimagining College for Faster Completion

In this episode, Joe Gottlieb, President and CTO of Higher Digital, sat down with John Gabrieli, co-founder and Managing Director of the Trio New College Network, to discuss Trio’s innovative approach to helping communities create hybrid colleges focused on competency-based outcomes for students.

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Episode 29

transformed: Digital Transformation at Liberal Arts Colleges

In this episode, Joe Gottlieb sat down with Carol Smith, CIO of DePauw University, to discuss how digital transformation differs at liberal arts colleges and the importance of fostering a partnership between the CIO and CFO.

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About The Host


As president of Higher Digital, Joe supports customers with strategy development, change management, and strategic operations. He is energized by the complex challenges and profound opportunities facing higher education and is motivated to have and share discussions around these topics.

Interested in being a guest?