Academic Technology Innovation Grant Awards Spring 2018

Lesley professors Jo-Anne Hart and Matt Nash were recently awarded Lesley University Academic Technology Innovation Grants. Jo-Anne’s grant award will supplement the cost of student enrollment in a virtual exchange with students in the Middle East. Matt’s award will fund the purchase of professional audio production resources that include a sound effects library and a Mackie-controlled DAW audio mixer. 

This Spring, twenty undergraduate students enrolled in Jo-Anne Hart’s Modern Middle East History course will engage in an 8-week virtual cross-cultural exchange with English-speaking undergrad students in the Middle East, Europe, and the United States. Using the virtual exchange tool Soliya, each Lesley student will be enrolled into an online discussion group of about 12-15 other students. This technology platform allows students to explore how their identity impacts the way they view and approach the world, as well as how they communicate with those with different perspectives.

Screenshot of Soliya Exchange Portal

Soliya Exchange Portal from

According to Jo-Anne, the live discussion forum, as a complement to the face-to-face course sessions, will “help bring the Middle East alive in important ways for my students. I will build my syllabus around their direct, active, learning experiences. In class I will have the Lesley students report back to us about their virtual exchanges each week. Students will keep a journal and write a reflection about their experiences and I will ask my students to draw on their exchange learning as part of their analyses in their exams.” 

Matt Nash, Chair of Digital Filmmaking, was awarded a grant for the purchase of a Mackie-controlled DAW professional audio mixer and a Hollywood Sound Effects audio library. The pairing of the hardware with the audio library will provide a full set of audio resources for faculty and students at all four levels of the Digital Filmmaking and Animation and Motion Media programs. The audio libraries will be installed on all computers in the LUCAD labs and available for students to use in their projects. The mixer will be permanently installed in the sound booth or editing workstation in Lunder 017 (or, alternatively, made available as a checkout item for students through Lockup).  

If you are interested in applying for an Academic Technology Innovation Grant or you would like more information on grant qualifications, please visit the Academic Technology Innovation Grant info page or email your questions to: