Stepping into the café with Kevin Gannon, Ph.D. might not mean coffee and croissants, but Queens faculty and academic staff who collaborate with him may walk away energized and full nonetheless. As the new director of the Center for the Advancement of Faculty Excellence (CAFÉ), Gannon hopes to meet faculty and academic staff where they are and take professional development and peer support to new levels.
“The idea of CAFÉ is to help make sure our faculty are introduced to new and meaningful pedagogies, teaching practices, insights from learning science and research but it should be done in synergy with the other kinds of work that faculty are expected to do,” said Sarah Fatherly, Ph.D., provost and vice president of academic affairs.
“I think the challenge of this job is to try to meet folks where they are and not add to what’s already a pretty complex workload,” Gannon said. “I want to see and be seen by faculty – to talk to individual faculty about how CAFÉ can support their work – going to their office or a place where they’ve chosen which helps me learn the campus but it also gets me out and about. That may mean collaborating with them one-on-one or showing up at their department meetings or working in small group consultations in a much more fluid type of arrangement.”