Meet the Team
Laura Blasi, Ph.D.
Director, Institutional Evaluation
Laura Blasi, Ph.D., has twenty years of experience in higher education, including
five years as a full‐time faculty member teaching evaluation and research methods
for graduate students at the University of Central Florida (UCF). She began her work
in higher education developing and managing programs within the American Association
of Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) in Washington, DC, focused on issues that impact
equity in education. With a master’s degree in English from Georgetown University,
she later earned her doctoral degree in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies
from the University of Virginia and began her work as an evaluator with the U.S. Department
of Education. Her experience in program evaluation includes work with NASA, the NSF,
and other federal agencies. She has been a member of the American Evaluation Association
(AEA) over the past fifteen years. In her current role she directs evaluation plan
creation and implementation at the college along with the ways we use research to
inform policy and practice. Dr. Blasi also assists with analysis and reporting from
national survey data; leads the design and implementation of surveys focused on learning;
and directs the college‐wide process for gathering, organizing, and analyzing data
from focus groups and interviews. Her own research has focused on the use of research
methods in higher education.
See her related National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA) essay: How Assessment and Institutional Research Staff Can Help Faculty with Student Learning Outcomes Assessment.
Assistant Director, Learning Assessment
Nichole has worked in higher education over the past 8 years with a focus on outcomes-based practices and assessment methods that inform curriculum, especially rubric design to support curricular alignment and scaffolding learning activities that culminate in summative assessments. Her pedagogical experience includes years in the classroom as a full-time Humanities Instructor at Valencia College. Prior to that she also taught Quantitative Reasoning at Rollins College and worked with their TRIO grant programs teaching rising first-generation college students through Upward Bound. Nichole earned a Bachelor's in Mathematics and a Master's in Liberal Studies, both from Rollins College. She worked for several years as a faculty member supporting the Developmental Education Initiative at Valencia College focusing on college success skills. Nichole participated in the development of Valencia’s QEP in the Big Meetings, reading discussion groups, and the co-curricular task force. Her work as co-chair of the Internationalizing the Curriculum Committee was integral to Valencia’s recent award of a two-year USIFL grant for Internationalizing the Curriculum. Nichole’s evaluations incorporate mixed methods of quantitative and qualitative analysis to support continuous process improvement. Her own research interests include classical and postmodern philosophies of education and justice, as well as cross-cultural learning.
Staff Assistant, Institutional Assessment
Kim began work as a Staff Assistant at Valencia College in 1997, working in Planning and Educational Services for six years. After that, she moved into the position of Executive Assistant for the Chief Learning Officer, finishing up her 15.5 year tenure at Valencia as the Administrative Assistant to the Assistant Vice President for Curriculum and Articulation. During her time at Valencia, Kim gained experience and expertise working through the 2003 SACS re-accreditation process; handling multiple budgets for the CLO; setting up meetings, appointments, travel; minutes; website updates, as well as the creation of multiple websites for the office of Curriculum and Articulation (Curriculum Committee, Articulation, Course Substitution, and others); served as the point of contact for the State Course Numbering System and as the Curriculum Assistant for the Curriculum Committee. After retiring from full-time employment at the end of 2012, Kim proceeded to return in several roles, filling in once again in her previous role as Administrative Assistant for Curriculum and Articulation, as well as temporary assignments in Study Abroad and Global Experiences, and Teaching and Learning. Kim also works as a Sign Language Interpreter part-time at Valencia, dividing her time between interpreting and working in the office of Institutional Assessment. Finally, she worked in the temporary, eight-month position as Coordinator for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Interpretation from November, 2014 to July, 2015, dividing her time in that full-time position between interpreting in Valencia College classes and handling the schedule for all the staff interpreters and caption providers at Valencia.
After obtaining her Associate of Arts degree at Valencia College, Kim is currently enrolled at Piedmont International University in a fully online program, with the hope of graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Interpreting.