Presidential Fellows Pursuing Strategies to Advance CNM

September 9, 2014 -- CNM's three new Presidential Fellows plan to begin work on advancing the college's efforts in several strategic areas -- Instructional Technology, Competency-based Curriculum, and Retention and Graduation.
Presidential Fellows Pursuing Strategies to Advance CNM

Jul 17, 2015

The new Presidential Fellows are Kat Flies, Presidential Fellow for Instructional Technology; Fang Chen, Presidential Fellow for Competency Based Curriculum; and John Diggelman, Presidential Fellow for Retention and Graduation. 

In her role as Presidential Fellow for Instructional Technology, Flies will support CNM’s Strategic Direction of Student Success by developing ways faculty can incorporate technology into the classroom. She will be looking at how CNM can ensure that the promise technology holds for student achievement is realized and how CNM will use technology in the classroom to create efficiencies and support continued growth.

"When I was hired as a full-time faculty member in the Biology Department over 20 years ago, I soon jumped onto the opportunity to train myself and be trained in various forms of technology," Flies says. "My assignment as a Presidential Fellow in Instructional Technology is, therefore, a very welcome task since I truly enjoy applying the latest technology in my classrooms. Some of my goals for this year include making mobile technology more accessible to faculty and increasing faculty’s comfort and productivity with technology."

Chen’s responsibilities as Presidential Fellow for Competency Based Curriculum will be to support the CNM’s Strategic Direction of Student Success by helping to create strategies to aid successful student completion and transfer through the implementation of competency based curriculum. The use of competencies in curriculum design provides direction for program course goals where achievement produces a competent graduate.  The process of conversion includes examination of course content for gaps, redundancies, and proper sequencing and the consideration of teaching methods.

Chen, was born and raised in China and is a faculty member in the School of Adult & General Education. “Before I received the Presidential Fellowship, I have been developing a competency-based, integrated reading and writing course for SAGE," she says. "I feel very honored and excited to be selected for the presidential fellowship this year. I will be working on competency-based education and continuing the wonderful work Joshua Krause and Kelley Peters have been doing. This year, I would like to focus on looking at successful competency-based education models established in colleges across the country. I would also like to explore the possibilities of creating competency-based degree/certificate programs in collaboration with different schools and departments at CNM.”

As Presidential Fellow for Retention/ Graduation, Diggelman will be supporting the CNM’s Strategic Direction of Student Success by helping disseminate retention and graduation data and creating strategies to improve the college’s percentages in both areas. He will be looking at ways CNM can use current data to help improve student success. Student success requires sustained effort from all directions and is not the sole responsibility of any single office or person. CNM’s goals for graduation and retention success is more a product of an overarching shared culture than it is the result of a narrowly conceived deliberate retention or graduation effort. There is no magic bullet. Therefore, Diggelman’s goal is to study how a culture of support for student success through graduation and retention is created.

Diggelman is a faculty member in the School of Communication, Humanities & Social Services,


“After childhood in Wisconsin, I started my undergraduate coursework at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and graduated from the University of Nevada Reno with a BS in economics," he says. "I spent two years teaching English in Japan, followed by graduate work in economics at the University of Texas in Austin with fields of specialization in public finance and environmental economics. I left UT in 2001 to teach economics at CNM. For the last several years, I’ve been working on identifying at-risk students early enough in the term to help them succeed.”