MIT Massachusetts Institute of Technology

People

 

Richard Larson is Principal Investigator of the MIT BLOSSOMS Initiative. He is Mitsui Professor of Engineering Systems and Director of the Center for Engineering Systems Fundamentals at MIT. He is also the Founder and Director of MIT LINC (Learning International Networks Consortium), an MIT-based international project that has held four international symposia and sponsored a number of initiatives in Africa, China and the Middle East. Professor Larson first became interested in technology-enabled education when in the early 1990’s he saw what a valuable addition it was to the education of his own children. From 1995 to 2002, he served as director of MIT’s Center for Advanced Educational Services (CAES) where he focused on bringing technology-enabled learning to students living on the traditional campus and to those living and working far from the university, often on different continents.
Dan Frey is Co-principal Investigator of the MIT BLOSSOMS Initiative and an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Systems at MIT. He was also an MIT faculty advisor to Design Squad, a new children's TV show featuring children engaged in designing and building machines. The goal of Design Squad is to give children a stronger understanding of the connection between engineering and the things we all use in everyday life.
Elizabeth Murray is Project Manager of the MIT BLOSSOMS Initiative and Co-Director of MIT LINC. She has been involved with LINC since its inception in 2002 and is editor of the proceedings of all four LINC conferences. She has traveled extensively in her LINC-related work and has co-authored with Professor Larson the following two papers on technology-enabled education: Distance Learning as a Tool for Poverty Reduction: A Focus on Two Countries, China and Mexico and Open Educational Resources for Blended Learning in High Schools: Overcoming Impediments in Developing Countries.
Rana Abu Zeid Qubain is Project Manager of the MIT BLOSSOMS Initiative in Jordan and General Manager of Investment World for Development and Technology, a company that uses local expertise to deliver comprehensive solutions to the educational market of Jordan. She was a co-planner of the 2007 LINC conference that took place at the Dead Sea in Jordan and devoted tremendous energy to making that conference a success. 
Naveed Malik is Project Manager of the MIT BLOSSOMS Initiative in Pakistan and Rector of the Pakistan Virtual University. Dr. Malik is also Coordinator of the PANdora Project that conducted a major series of studies in nine Asian countries with the goal of developing practices and policies to enhance the use of distance learning technologies in Asia. Dr. Malik has been involved with MIT LINC since its founding and has been a plenary speaker at all four LINC conferences.
Paul Zalloua is Project Manager of the MIT BLOSSOMS Initiative in Lebanon and Chief Operating Officer at Global Investment, an investment company in Beirut specialized in enabling technology in the educational sector.  Paul has more than twenty years of experience in executive management, marketing, business development & engineering in the field of Information Technology, Telecommunications, and Networking.   He is currently spearheading the effort at Global Investment to enhance the educational system in Lebanon and the Gulf Region through the establishment of e-learning infrastructure to better serve the educational communities.  Previously, Mr. Zalloua held executive positions in high-tech companies in the United Sates where he demonstrated success in building results-oriented organizations. 
Faten Shaheed Ardekany is Project Manager for the Sultan Bin AbdulAziz Science & Technology Center (Scitech) of the MIT BLOSSOMS Initiative in Saudi Arabia, coordinating this collaborative effort among Scitech, Saudi Aramco and MIT.  Currently she is the manager of "National Grid For Learning Resources" at Sultan Bin Abdulaziz Center for Science and Technology (Scitech), a non-profit educational foundation dedicated to increasing public awareness of science and technology especially among the youth, and developing their interest and understanding of it. Faten's earlier experience was in socio-economic research in the field of agriculture, animal production and protection. She holds a Masters degree in international management, and has experience in management training and English/Arabic interpretation.
Sheikha Althakafi is Project Manager for Saudi Aramco of the MIT BLOSSOMS Initiative in Saudi Arabia, overseeing management of this project on behalf of Saudi Aramco.  She has worked at Aramco for nineteen years and currently is a Human Resource Development Consultant in the office of the General Manager of Training and Development.  When first joining the company, she worked as Training Coordinator for Saudi Aramco Medical Services Organization and later worked as a Senior Planner and Assistant to the General Manger of Clinical Services handling various projects and administrative duties. Sheikha brings with her diverse experience in Human Resources policy development, planning, and administration.
Zaleha Abdullah  Zaleha Abdullah is Project Manager for the Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) - MIT BLOSSOMS initiative in Malaysia, coordinating this collaborative effort among Malaysia Ministry of Education, UTM and MIT. She is also the Coordinator for the Educational Technology Program, which is based in the School of Education. She is actively involved in research and projects of Higher Education under the Creative Technology Research Group (CITE). Her research interests and experience are in the area of creativity, Activity Theory, and online Learning. She holds a Ph.D. degree in distance and online learning, and has previously worked in the design industry before joining the School of Education.
  Wendy Hwang is Project Manager for the MIT BLOSSOMS partnership with the Verakin High School of Chongqing (VHSC) of the Verakin Group in China. Ms. Hwang is Assistant to the Chairman of Verakin Group/ Director of International Department of VHSC.  She has worked in educational institutions for 12 years and has been Director of the International Department of VHSC for 5 years. She has a wealth of experience in operating international education programs and in designing exchange activities around college counseling for high school students. She devotes herself to improving the learning/teaching skills from the traditional Chinese educational methods towards a model that will develop students' creativity and increase their exposure to cross-cultural communications.