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Lean in Higher Education

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Tuesday, May 25, 10:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Why is it important to talk about lean in higher education right now? After all, universities have been around for hundreds of years as key pillars of society for education, research, healthcare, and service. But as demand on universities continues to grow, student expectations rise, and funding diminishes, the need to improve our universities both from an educational and administrative perspective becomes more important than ever. Hear from higher ed leaders from around the world as they grapple with ways to continually improve universities using Lean or similar methodologies.

Featured Interview: Integrating Lean Thinking and Culture at Universities

lean-higher-education.pngBill Balzer, author, Lean Higher Education

The session kicks off with an in-depth and intriguing interview with Bill Balzer, the author of Lean Higher Education. We'll ask about:

  • the lean journey at his institution
  • getting support and buy-in
  • case studies and success stories
  • advice for those just starting out

The discussion will conclude by pondering the next frontier of the ultimate university experience with the complete integration of Lean into the core teaching and learning mission. 

PechaKucha: Round Robin Lean Stories from Around the World

  • Ahren Crickard, UC San Diego (Moderator) 
  • Grace Bryant, University of Canberra  
  • Angus Brown, Imperial College London
  • Megan Mozina, Cresta Solutions
  • Svein Are Tjeldnes, Seniorrådgiver i University of Tromsø - The Arctic University of Norway

Have you heard about "PechaKucha?" It's Japanese slang for "chit chat," but has evolved into a rapid-fire story-telling platform. We're taking the PechaKucha concept virtual as we hear Lean in higher education success stories from across the globe. Audience participation will be encouraged as we showcase Lean journeys at various institutions and uncover challenges and lessons learned.

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Speaker Bios

Featured Interview

  • Bill Balzer, Interim President, Owen Community College

    Bill Balzer, Interim President, Owen Community College

    Bill Balzer is the author of Lean Higher Education: Increasing the Value and Performance of University Processes 2nd Ed. (2020). He has participated in numerous university initiatives to improve university processes and effectiveness and advises colleges and universities contemplating the adoption of Lean. Bill received his Ph.D. in industrial-organizational psychology from New York University. He has over 35 years of experience in higher education. He is a professor of industrial-organizational psychology at Bowling Green State University, where he holds an administrative appointment as Vice President for Faculty Affairs and Strategic Initiatives. He is currently serving as Interim President at Owens Community College. For more information visit https://www.leanhighereducation.com/.

Pecha Kucha

  • Ahren Crickard, Strategy & Operations Executive, UC San Diego

    Ahren Crickard, Strategy & Operations Executive, UC San Diego

    Since 2001, Ahren has worked with the Office of the Executive Vice Chancellor and Chancellor on various strategic academic initiatives. Her skills in continuous improvement, process efficiency, and change management are utilized to examine business processes, as well. By trade, she is an attorney, but she is also a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt.

  • Angus Brown, Head of Operational Improvement, Imperial College London

    Angus Brown, Head of Operational Improvement, Imperial College London

    Angus leads the Operational Improvement team at Imperial College London, coordinating and supporting continuous improvement and College transformation projects. The team is currently involved in providing input for a proposed shared services operating model across HR and finance functions. Beyond Imperial, Angus is co-chair of the Lean in Higher Education Southern England group. Outside the world of lean, you will find Angus growing vegetables or playing tennis badly.
  • Grace Bryant, Improvement Specialist, Business Process Improvement, University of Canberra

    Grace Bryant, Improvement Specialist, Business Process Improvement, University of Canberra

    Grace Bryant has dedicated the past 17 years in service to higher education, particularly within the University of Canberra’s Quality and Service Improvement team, in Australia’s capital. She serves as Deputy Chair (Communication) on the global steering committee for Lean in Higher Education. She is the recipient of several Association for Tertiary Education Management (ATEM) acknowledgments and is an exhibiting artist and freelance writer.
  • Megan Mozina, Founder and Principal, Cresta Solutions

    Megan Mozina, Founder and Principal, Cresta Solutions

    As Founder and Principal of Cresta Solutions, Megan (she/her) prepares and empowers growing leaders at purpose-driven organizations to get breakthrough results on their projects — now and in the future. To get them there, she takes a fresh approach to project leadership, layering on a commitment to coaching and skill-building that focuses on creative problem-solving and on helping human beings manage changes for the benefit of other human beings. Her global perspective and background in international and higher education inform her work as an educator, consultant, and facilitator. She can't decide if the best part of her day is when she's helping others learn or when she's eating dark chocolate; to be safe, she does both.
  • Svein Are Tjeldnes, Lean Manager, Seniorrådgiver i University of Tromsø

    Svein Are Tjeldnes, Lean Manager, Seniorrådgiver i University of Tromsø

    Svein Are is a Lean manager, design thinker and facilitator at UiT the Arctic University of Norway. He has a law degree from UiT and joined the university back in 2000. After many years as Head of Administration at the Department of Psychology, he was recruited to take part in the Faculty of Health’s Lean startup in 2010. In 2012 he was asked to lead and coordinate the improvement program at UiT. Svein Are has a passion for sharing knowledge and experiences within continuous improvement and is often invited to speak at conferences and events, both within and outside the Higher Education sector. He finds that facilitation is at the core of any improvement process, and is currently co-developing a facilitation model.

Host

  • Tracy O'Rourke, Co-Founder, Just-In-Time Café

    Tracy O'Rourke, Co-Founder, Just-In-Time Café

    Tracy is Co-Founder of the Just-in-Time and co-host of the Just-In-Time Cafe Podcast. She is also the co-author of “The Problem-Solving Toolkit: A Surprisingly Simple Guide To Your Lean Six Sigma Journey." Tracy is a Master Black Belt, facilitator, trainer and instructor. Over the last 20 years, Tracy has trained over 2,000 people, mentored 500+ people and has helped complete 500+ projects with results that range between $50,000 and $12 million in savings.  

    Tracy is also a Lean Six Sigma Instructor at UC San Diego Extension.