Mesa's Ongoing Support for Teaching

Meet our TEAM

Christina Crosby

Christina Crosby

Hi there! I’m officially housed in Mesa’s Psychology Department and teach courses that range from General Psychology to Research Methods to Statistics. Every single course is unique, whether it is in the same or different discipline; thus, each presents its own opportunities and challenges – which just means that all can amazing in their own way! Before returning to school for psychological science, I initially studied graphic design and advertising, which are skills I now like to draw upon to design approachable and accessible course materials and online course layouts. I always enjoy thinking about and trying out new ideas to make things better ...and so look forward to working with you as you seek to do the same!
Coaching hours: Thursdays @ 2:30p - 3:30p. Use the MOST Bookings Calendar to book.

Tasha frankie

Tasha Frankie

Hi! I teach Computer & Information Sciences - I can help you debug the HTML behind the Canvas Rich Text Editor. I'm a fan of improving courses based on research related to teaching and learning. When you look at my courses, you'll find me using Canvas features in ways they weren't designed, so that I can provide a better learning experience to students. A few years ago, I introduced new authentic assessments to my classes, and realized that I no longer needed tests because the authentic assessments gave me better insight into what students understood. Students love not having tests, and I find they also work harder and learn more when engaging with authentic assessments. Plus, with authentic assessments in online classes, I don't need to worry about proctoring tests! Recently, I converted my courses to standards-based grading, to change the emphasis from earning points to learning course concepts.
Coaching hours: Tuesdays 10a - 12p. Use the Bookings calendar to book.

Tanya hall

Tanya Hall

Hello! My name is Tanya and I’ve been an adjunct philosophy instructor here at Mesa since 2015. I primarily teach argumentative writing, logic, and philosophy of science, both on campus and online. I love talking about teaching, learning, course design, and educational technologies (and everything related, including how AI is shaking everything up). What excites me most is reimagining traditional assignments and teaching methods for the online environment (and then applying what I’ve learned about successful online teaching back to in-person teaching!). I believe that an essential key to creating an engaging and inclusive learning environment is designing to promote confidence. Through assignment and course design choices we can help learners to feel confident that they know what to do, that they can indeed do it, and that it’s worth doing. I’m very comfortable with Canvas and its many tools (and HTML). I particularly like designing interactive lectures, tutorials, and reading assignments. My favorite tool is the ‘Quizzes’ tool, which I rarely use for quizzes, and my favorite integrations are Perusall and EdPuzzle. I’m also passionate about animals and language learning. I am excited to collaborate with everyone else who cares about creating valuable, well-designed, equitable learning experiences for our students! Coaching hours: Wednesdays 12p - 2p. Use the Bookings calendar to book.

Jason Kalchik

Jason has taught composition, literature, andJason Kalchik creative writing courses at San Diego Mesa College for just over ten years. His primary academic interests are in literature, popular culture, critical theory, and all the spaces where they intersect. However, when it comes to teaching, he feels the most excitement designing and facilitating composition courses in the co-requisite model, a model for which he and his colleagues at Mesa were early adopters and innovators. Through professional learning experiences, he has come to understand the vitality of ongoing self-reflection and growth. He lives in Normal Heights with his wife Meegan and his two cats and stays active exploring nature, rock climbing, attending live music, and reading. Coaching hours: Wednesdays 3p - 5p. Use the Bookings calendar to book.

mariam kushkaki

Mariam Kushkaki

Hello! I’m Mariam Kushkaki, an English instructor at San Diego Mesa College. I’m fortunate to be part of an incredible team of colleagues at Mesa who have helped shape how I’ve re-designed my classes for asynchronous and remote settings, and I’m happy to share those practices with you. I’m a big fan of simple, efficient, and aesthetically pleasing Canvas shells, so if that’s something you’re interested in--or if you need support with presenting content, creating design elements, or streamlining the Canvas experience for students--let me know!
Coaching hours: Tuesdays 3p - 4p. Use the MOST Bookings calendar to book.

kim lacher

Kim Lacher

👋 Hi! I have been teaching in the English Department here at Mesa for 11 years (online for 6).  I believe that with equitable and inclusive online instruction, we have the opportunity to give all students access to spaces where they can be engaged, challenged, and successful.  I'm passionate about humanizing my online courses and removing barriers that keep students from thriving.  I love learning from my colleagues about the best ways to do this, and I am thrilled to be a part of MOST so that I can share this knowledge with you.
Coaching hours: (Kim is on sabbatical Spring 2024.)

katie palacios

Katie Palacios

Greetings! I am fortunate to be the instructional designer in the Mesa LOFT, where I support our professional learning offerings across the campus. I've taught online Computer Business Technology and Web Design classes, and I occasionally facilitate courses for @ONE. There is no "easy button" for teaching online successfully. I think it's a magical combination of inclusive course design, relationship-building with our students, an acceptance that we'll never get it exactly right, and a willingness to keep learning and trying again. But I believe that open, humanized online education has the power to transform the lives of our students, and that is why I engage in this difficult work. How awesome to be part of team at Mesa engaged in this difficult work together!
Coaching hours: Mondays 11a - 12p and Wednesdays 10a - 11a. Use the MOST Bookings calendar to book.


Kris Secor

Hi! My name is Kris Secor and I'm your Accessibility Mentor at San Diego Mesa College. I've been a developer and educator for over 20 years now. Wow time flies. My first mobile "app" was built in the early 2000's, although it wasn't considered an app back then. It used XML to email food orders from a stadium seat for a minor league baseball team's consession services. That's all we had at the time. The ability to email. From there is it's been a whirlwind of developing web sites, kiosks, mobile apps and other digital products for companies, consulting firms, friends, even for myself.

So where does accessibility come in? I started doing a lot of eCommerce in the early 2000's. That's a world where you want everyone to have access to your work or you'll lose money! That's where I developed a "progressive enhancement" mentality where we target the least functional devices when we build. At the leading college of equity and excellence, this attitude is also a must! When we think of our students we need to assume poor internet connectivity and old hand-me-down devices.

Today we've come a long way with WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines). We might be familiar with them, but are they making their way into our online courses? Let me help you get there!
Coaching hours: Tuesdays 3pm - 5pm. Use the MOST Bookings calendar to book.

cara smulevitz

Cara Smulevitz

Hi there 👋 I'm Cara (pronounced like this:  🚗+ ah). I've been at Mesa since 2016, but I've been an Art History Professor for almost two decades. I specialize in Modern and Contemporary Art. I've also served as Mesa's Online Faculty mentor since 2019. I enjoy working with seasoned online faculty as well as new-to-online folks. I love helping my colleagues find ways to prioritize student success and engagement in their online courses, and I'm really excited to be part of Mesa's Ongoing Support for Teaching! 
Coaching hours: Friday drop-ins welcome from 9:30a - 10:30a in Cara's MOST Coaching Zoom.

kelly spoon

Kelly Spoon

I am a math faculty member who is passionate about professional learning and online teaching. I teach fully online, hybrid, and fully on-campus classes and enjoy leveraging technology to engage and connect with my students in all modalities. Currently I'm redesigning my online precalculus class to use standards-based grading, open educational resources, and universal design for learning. Coaching hours: Thursdays 12p - 2p and Fridays 12:30 - 1:30p. Use the MOST Bookings calendar to book.