I was raised as a dual-citizen, speaking German and English fluently, as well as, having attended elementary school in Germany and completing my secondary education in the United States. I was raised with a passion for diverse cultures and an understanding of diverse perspectives. During my undergraduate post-secondary education, Michael spent a summer interning with the Colorado/Mexico International Trade Office in Guadalajara, Mexico. Moreover, his undergraduate degree included a concentration in International Business.
This passion continued into my career. I have taught at the University of Colorado Denver, Metropolitan State University of Denver, and Middle Tennessee State University. These institutions are comprised of a significant number of ethnic minority and first-generation students. When teaching, I foster an inclusive environment, as I strongly believe that diverse backgrounds allow for more meaningful and insightful discussion. Additionally, I ensure that my courses are accessible to all students regardless of need.
My compassion for students, parents, educators and therapists who deal with various learning and developmental disabilities was highlighted with the co-founding of Developing Minds Software, which created a software tool to facilitate data collection for special needs educators and therapists.
As the Director of the Educational Technology Center, I lead a team of nearly 20 educational technologists and over 70 student employees representing a wide variety of backgrounds, goals and needs. As part of this leadership role, I worked toward ensuring inclusivity of all students in traditional, blended and online courses. For instance, accessibility initiatives have been expanded including the development of a campus-wide accessibility policy and ensuring that the necessary infrastructure is in place (i.e., the ability to efficiently caption all media).
As a researcher, I intentionally selected projects that allow me to emphasize my ability to perform interinstitutional, interdisciplinary, and international research. For instance, I regularly work with diverse research teams to ensure that varied perspectives and thought are included. This has led to promising results. For instance, my research concerning disaster information and global safety information sharing address problems at the local, regional and global context.