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Getting to know Emily Henry

OSU Professional and Continuing Education assistant director of program development

“My education and career path prior to this were fairly unrelated, but the unifying threads have always been my love of education and learning and my passion for finding solutions.”

For scientist and instructor Emily Henry, the pursuit of knowledge is the perpetual force behind her career. Emily earned a bachelor’s degree in biology and a minor in anthropology from Purdue University and later joined the Indiana Department of Natural Resources as an environmental scientist. Two years later, Emily left her home state of Indiana to move north and pursue her Ph.D. at Michigan State University. After earning a dual Ph.D. degree in fisheries and wildlife and ecology, evolutionary biology and behavior, Emily left the Midwest for Tillamook, Oregon, before finding herself at Oregon State University’s Professional and Continuing Education (PACE) program.

As one of PACE’s three assistant directors, Emily uses her extensive background in science, policy and communication to connect the dots for professional and continuing education at Oregon State. Focused on strengthening operations and building strategic relationships to further PACE’s mission of becoming a trusted resource related to continuing education, distance learning and online instructional technology, Emily has quickly become an integral part of the Division of Extended Campus family.

By Jess Waldschmidt
March 6, 2018


Hometown?

Anderson, Indiana

When did you begin working at Oregon State’s Division of Extended Campus?

“I started with PACE in July 2016. I’ve been working with OSU Open Campus since May 2013, first in Tillamook County and now here in Corvallis.”

What excited you about the opportunity to work for Oregon State?

“I’m fortunate to have a split position between PACE and Open Campus. What excites me is that I get to work with such an awesome team and that I always have the opportunity to learn new things and find new solutions.”

As one of PACE’s three assistant directors, Emily uses her extensive background in science, policy and communication to connect the dots for professional and continuing education at Oregon State.

Your role in Professional and Continuing Education is to direct program development. Describe what that means and what your responsibilities are.

“My position is connected to both our program development and enrollment teams. Our program development team works with partners on campus to develop noncredit courses, certificate programs and workshops. Our enrollment team handles all incoming calls and emails from prospective students. My daily work includes collaborating closely with the other teams at PACE (instructional design and marketing) to bring these projects to fruition and serve as a point of contact for both our internal and external teams.”

Describe the importance of program development and how it benefits students.

“Our PACE students typically are looking to develop their skills in order to switch careers or advance in their current field. In program development, we create programs that are innovative and responsive to the needs of our learners. For instance, our campus partners in the Research Office saw a need for training around drone operation and safety, both for OSU employees and the public. Our program development team has been able to respond to that need in a matter of months, developing both a test prep course and flight safety course for drone operators. At the same time, we get to share the expertise of our on-campus faculty and staff with an audience that may not normally connect with Oregon State. I see PACE as another exciting way of advancing the land grant mission of the university.”

What do you like most about your job?

“I love the PACE team! We work hard and have fun doing it. I also love learning from our expert faculty here on campus and getting to bring that expertise to a wider audience in Oregon and beyond.”

What do you wish others knew about your job?

“I think the noncredit world is an unintentionally well-kept secret! I want more people to know about the opportunities for noncredit education, and I’m excited to help build awareness of the options available through PACE.”

What made you decide to get into this field?

“My education and career path prior to this were fairly unrelated, but the unifying threads have always been my love of education and learning and my passion for finding solutions.”

What do you believe is your greatest accomplishment in this position?

“It has been exciting to help our team grow and develop—we’ve hired seven people since I started in 2016. Beyond that, it has been amazing to play a role in PACE program and revenue growth. We continue to build new relationships on campus and help departments and colleges grow their reach beyond degree-seeking students.”

“For OSU students, I would encourage them to look at the ways they can continue to learn with Oregon State. We have great programs that you can complete alongside a degree to give you an advantage when you are in the job market or that can help you continue to learn new skills once you graduate.”

What advice would you like to give to students, staff, faculty?

“Regarding PACE, I would encourage faculty and staff to reach out and learn more about ways we can work together. We can develop online courses, train teams, fulfill broader impacts on grants and host webinars. And through this work, we are delivering the best of Oregon State to a new set of learners and organizations. Plus, we are fun to work with!

“For OSU students, I would encourage them to look at the ways they can continue to learn with Oregon State. We have great programs that you can complete alongside a degree to give you an advantage when you are in the job market or that can help you continue to learn new skills once you graduate.”

What is one surprising thing about you that not many people know?

“My degrees are in fisheries and wildlife and ecology/biology—I LOVE science! I also have different colored eyes.”

What are your favorite activities outside of work?

“I love seeing movies and live music. And I’m always dreaming about where I can travel to next!”

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