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Technology-Enhanced Education

August 2, 2013 @ 7:30 am - 9:00 am

Education is critical to building a strong economy.  And yet, some critics suggest that the U.S. education system has not changed significantly in over 300 years and is, further, irrelevant to today’s needs.  This panel discussion will explore how technology can enable a more meaningful learning environment in America.  What are the roles of “MOOCS” (massive, open online courses)?  How does technology change the definition of “school” in the 21st century?  What role, if any, can technology potentially play in textbook curriculum development?  What role, if any, can technology play in teaching the “new” skills demanded by employers – how to think critically and analytically, how to collaborate in physical and virtual environments, how to have the skills to process massive amounts of data, how to master new media skills in the workplace?

The panel will be led by Gary Beach, a leader in the IT field with over 30 years of experience who is currently working on a new book entitled “The U.S. Technology Skills Gap.”  Additional panelists include Dr. Bob Cody, Dean of Mathematics, Science, Business, Technology and Workforce Education at Cape Cod Community College, Dr. Bill Topper, Director of Curry College’s MBA program, and Dr. Ruth Sherman Dean of Continuing Education and Graduate Studies at Curry College.

Gary Beach brings more than 30 years of information technology publishing experience to his role as publisher emeritus of IDG’s CIO magazine. Beach is a highly regarded spokesperson throughout the United States and the global technology industry and he has testified on key issues facing the IT industry before the U.S. House and Senate. From the Oval Office of the White House in 1995, Beach launched an IT non-profit organization called Tech Corps that continues to challenge IT professionals to assist the education tech issues of  K-12 schools in America. As an expert on the role of the CIO, IT best practices and future IT predictions, he is frequently quoted by major media organizations such as CNN, USA Today, The New York Times, The San Francisco Chronicle and Business Week. Beach has been a regular contributor on CNBC’s Squawk Box, Squawk on the Street and Closing Bell for more than 10 years. From 1998 – 2002 he contributed commentaries on key tech issues to NPR’s “All Things Considered” program. Beach is a frequent guest speaker at many industry conferences as well as user events for firms such as Microsoft, IBM, Dell, EMC and CA. In 2008, Beach developed and moderated CIO magazine’s “How to Sell the CIO” sales development program.

Prior to joining CIO magazine in 1997, Beach was publisher and president of two IDG publications, Computerworld and Network World. He joined IDG in 1987 after a 10 year career in managerial posts at McGraw-Hill, Inc.

Beach has written a book entitled “The U.S. Technology Skills Gap” released in 2013 by John Wiley and Sons.

New York Times review: A Tech Veteran Takes on the Skills Gap

WSJ reviewU.S. Education Needs ‘Recalibrating’

bobRobert D. Cody is currently the Dean of Mathematics, Science, Business, Technology and Workforce Education at Cape Cod Community College. Prior to his Administrative role, Bob served as an Adjunct Professor teaching General Chemistry and Chemistry for the Health Sciences. He earned a PhD in Organic Chemistry from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and a BA in Chemistry from St. Michael’s College. Bob spent 25 years in the chemical industry advancing from individual contributor to senior management roles and is known for his innovative approaches toward technology and business needs and has an established record of leadership, problem-solving, organizational development, maximizing individual contributions and continuous operational improvement. His corporate roles varied from a Research Chemist involved with applied and basic R&D, to Business Manager with P&L responsibility, to Vice President, Global Research, Development and Engineering with responsibility for growth, innovation, and technology strategy. Bob was also the principal of IPDA Consulting Group, LLC. As a consultant, Bob has facilitated organizational growth, identified new market opportunities for mature technologies, developed patented technology resulting in significant licensing opportunities, and developed strategic plans linking technology and commercial organizations to maximize growth.


Bob currently serves on the Board of Directors of Open Cape, the Cape Cod Community Leadership Institute and the Cape Cod Technology Council. Previously he has served on the Board of Directors of Groundwork Bridgeport in Bridgeport, CT and the Stratford, CT YMCA and has been very active in YMCA Youth programs. He was also a member of the Stratford Board of Education serving as the Board Chair for two years and Chairman of the Curriculum and Finance Committees. Bob also serves on the Engineering Advisory Board at Cape Cod Regional Technical High School and has also served as an Adjunct Professor of Chemistry at Sacred Heart University.

Topper_William 2_webWilliam W. Topper is the Director of Curry College’s MBA Program and teaches Supply Chain and Operations Analysis as well as Strategic Planning. Additionally, Dr. Topper is part of the team of instructors that guide the Curry College Capstone projects. He also developed and instructed the Curry College ‘Essentials of Project Management Workshop’, and has taught in the Curry College undergraduate program.

Also, Dr. Topper is a doctoral mentor for topic selection, research methods and designs at Northcentral University. He has served as an adjunct professor with the University of Phoenix instructing in Operations Management.

Prior to his academic career, Dr. Topper was Vice President of Service and Operations at Workscape, Inc. and was the Vice President and General Manager for Automatic Data Processing’s (ADP) Benefits Administration business. Prior to that he was the Division Vice President for ADP Employer Services with a focus on HR outsourcing and payroll processing, President of Motor Sound Corporation in Silicon Valley, and Vice President of Manufacturing for Plaskolite Inc., a plastic manufacturing company in Columbus, Ohio.

Dr. Topper completed his Ph.D. at Capella University with a dissertation on Succession Planning Best Practices using a mixed methodology Delphi study. He holds an MBA from Capital University and a B.S. from Franklin University.


Sherman_Ruth_webDr. Ruth Sherman currently serves as the Dean of Continuing Education and Graduate Studies at Curry College in Milton, Massachusetts.  In addition to providing the leadership and administrative oversight for the design and delivery of continuing education, graduate, and professional development programs for adults, Dr. Sherman is also responsible for advancing the development and implementation of hybrid and online programs and providing leadership for the college’s new five-year Strategic Plan.

Over the past three decades, Dr. Sherman has held a diverse range of senior level academic positions across two and four year public and private higher education institutions. She has served as Vice President of Academic Affairs at the Community College of Rhode Island; Dean of Continuing Education, Workforce Development and Community Services at Bristol Community College in Fall River, MA; and, Assistant Dean for Planning and Development at Bunker Hill Community College in Boston.  Dr. Sherman also served as the Director of the Pathways to College Program where she developed and directed national partnerships to strengthen college access, educational preparation, and college success for underserved populations.  Dr. Sherman brings extensive experience in strengthening educational access and outcomes for adult learners through the innovative use of emerging technologies, creating educational partnerships with business and industry to develop a skilled workforce, and managing organizational change to accomplish strategic institutional goals.

Dr. Sherman earned her undergraduate degree in Education from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, her graduate degree in Education from Northeastern University, and her doctorate in Higher Education Administration from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She has authored a wide range of articles on higher education issues, presented at national conferences, and served on numerous educational and economic development advisory boards.



August 2, 2013
7:30 am - 9:00 am
Event Category:


Hyannis Golf Course
1840 Iyannough Rd
Hyannis, MA 02601 United States
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