We'd like to introduce you to the session leaders participating in the EdTech Workshop 2019. More bios will be posted as they are received!

EdTech Workshop 2019 Session Leaders
Name Session Title Details
Prof. David Suarez | Assistant Professor, Teaching Stream Teaching Writing in the Age of Mechanical Content Production   Prof. Suarez is an Assistant Professor, Teaching Stream in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Toronto, where he received his Ph.D. in 2016. Previously, he was Lecturer and SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Philosophy at UC Berkeley. His research is aimed at understanding and rehabilitating post-Kantian philosophy in order to develop it today as a viable mode of philosophical inquiry.
AltProf. Chirag Variawa | Director, First-year CurriculumInstitute for Studies in Transdisciplinary Engineering Education & Practice (ISTEP) 0 to 100: Coordinating and teaching a large introductory First-year Engineering course at UofT (from your living room) Prof. Chirag Variawa is the Director, First Year Curriculum, and Assistant Professor, Teaching-stream, at the Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering, University of Toronto. He received his Ph.D. from the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, and his B.A.Sc. in Materials Science Engineering, both from the University of Toronto. His multidisciplinary teaching and research bring together Engineering Education and Industrial Engineering to identify and mitigate learning barriers for diverse student populations. He is the founding member of the First-year Engineering Education Research (FYEER) group, whose goal is to support undergraduate and graduate student engineering education.  Projects from FYEER include using sentiment analysis to understand large-scale student feedback, creating chatbots to support positive learning strategies, understanding the expectations and realities of first-year student workload, among others.  Variawa coordinates and teaches large (1200+ student) first-year engineering courses, and also teaches a Ph.D. course on teaching and learning in engineering education.  He facilitates several community-building events in the Faculty, and serves on committees that focus on first-year, curriculum, equity/diversity/inclusion, and co-coordinates TA training for the Faculty. Variawa also serves as the inaugural Faculty-in-Residence at the Chestnut Student Residence, University of Toronto.  He spends his time supporting students in this informal setting with events and initiatives which include Dinner with your Professors, Industry Nights, Community Pop-ups, and others.  In his spare time, Variawa enjoys tinkering with electronics and mechanical things.
Prof. Bill Ju | Associate Professor, Teaching StreamOther The 5 steps that allowed me to plan ahead to reduce, recycle but not necessarily re-use assessments in a course during and post-pandemic As a member of the teaching stream I have been interested in how to teach in smart classrooms that support active learning. Here is my story...
Prof. Alana Boland | Associate Professor , Associate Dean, Teaching and LearningDepartment of Geography and Planning Learning together: What my online synchronous course has taught me about the classroom I teach and research in the broad field of environmental geography. I am also the Associate Dean, Teaching and Learning in the Faculty of Arts & Science - a role that has introduced me to the wonderful work of colleagues across the faculty. In the past couple of years, I have taught a second year environmental course for program students that also draws in students for other areas of study. My research focuses on environmental governance in urban China, infrastructure and technopolitics of water, and environmental narratives associated with China's changing global influence.
Phani Radhakrishnan | Associate Professor critical thinking with experiential & work-integrated learning, pedagogy of data analytics, group learning
Peter Weiss | Dr. Peter Eliot Weiss is an Associate Professor, Teaching Stream. He has taught the first year design/communication course, Engineering Strategies and Practice since its first pilot year, about fifteen years ago, and was part of the roll-out of the course to over 1000 students. He also teaches electives: Engineering and Social Justice and Writing Lab, in which students discover and explore their personal voice. As a playwright, his works have been produced in Canada, the US, England and elsewhere in the world.
Parnian Jadidian | Senior Advisor Process Safety (PSM) at Enbridge Gas Inc.Department of Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry (ChemE) Adventures in SCORM Files I am a Senior to Process Safety Advisor (PSM) at Enbridge Gas Inc. with a passion for using engineering and creative problem solving to keep people safe while keeping businesses profitable. Prior to my current position at Enbridge , I have over six years of experience in risk management consulting, with a focus on identifying and evaluating loss potential at industrial and commercial facilities due to fires, explosions, natural hazards, equipment breakdowns and other operational and management factors. I worked closely with my clients to develop and implement practical solutions to mitigate or reduce risk at their facilities and to improve their process safety culture.
Oluwatobi Edun | Department of Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry (ChemE) Enhancing the Individual Learning Experience via Class-sourcing and Teamwork Oluwatobi Edun is a Master of Engineering, Chemical Engineering candidate with emphases in Sustainable Energy and Entrepreneurship. He is also a Teaching Assistant for the Cross-Disciplinary course, JRE420: People Management and Organizational Behaviour.
Niema Mohammad | TA + Ph.D Student Our experience teaching ESC103F in the Myhal TEAL rooms: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (not really)! Niema has been a teaching assistant for four engineering courses (1st year and 4th year). She is a Ph.D. Student at the Gilbert Lab at the Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering. Her work aims to create personalized therapy options for stem cell transplantation. She completed her undergraduate degree in Engineering Science in the Biomedical Systems Option.
Mr. Kia Shakiba | PhD student, CEO (Examify Inc)The Edward S. Rogers Sr. Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering (ECE) Better than paper exams I'm a PhD research student focused in cloud cache optimization who has a passion for teaching. In 2019, I started the EdTech company Examify here at UofT which works to improve the online examination experience in STEM for both the students and teaching staff.
Mr. Joseph Sebastian | Ph.D. CandidateInstitute of Biomedical Engineering (BME) A Data Driven Framework To Improve Feedback For Educators Joseph Sebastian is a fourth year direct-entry PhD candidate in the laboratory of Dr. Craig A Simmons at the Institute of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Toronto. Previously, he received his BEng degree in Biomedical Engineering and minor in Physics from Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU, formerly Ryerson University) in 2019; here, his undergraduate research resulted in 13 publications and 5 international conference presentations, the highest by an undergraduate student at TMU. Joseph has received numerous academic scholarships including the Mitacs Globalink Research Award, NSERC’s Alexander Graham Bell Canada Graduate Scholarship (Master’s and Doctoral), and most recently, the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship. Outside of academia, Joseph is strongly interested in mentorship, acting as both a Residence Don and Residence Life Intern at the University of St. Michael’s College; pedagogy, serving as a lecturer and teaching assistant for >20 undergraduate courses in the FASE; and extra-curricular leadership, volunteering as the Director for Professional Relations at the Graduate Management Consulting Association. Outside of research, Joseph is an avid triathlete, weightlifter, competitive tennis player, classical opera singer, and violinist. 
Mr. Alexander Olson | Centre for Analytics and AI Engineering (CARTE) GPT in the Classroom: Unveiling the Possibilities and Addressing the Dilemmas of AI-Driven Education At CARTE, Alex collaborates with faculty, staff and students to find new ways to integrate artificial intelligence into their work. He's keenly invested in promoting understanding of AI, and working to support ethical AI development and practices.
AltMiss Crystal Liu | MASc CandidateDepartment of Materials Science & Engineering (MSE) Onscreen vs In-hand: Delivering a Hands-on Design Course During the Pandemic Loves designing and making things.
Michel Singh | Chief Technology Officer From Flat to Fab: Creating Interactive Textbooks with Pressbooks Chief Technology Officer at eCampusOntario since 2018, I have been involved in academia for the past twenty years as a faculty member and as an institution administrator. One of my main motivation through this time has circled around using technology to enrich learning opportunities and environments. My work at eCampusOntario is primarily focused on providing shared services to Ontario institutions that enables faculty and students to use digital solutions in a responsible and effective way.
Melvin Chien | Teaching with Snagit: Lecture Capture and Beyond As a Faculty Liaison, Technology at CTSI and ACT, Melvin provides direct support, training, and consultations on Quercus and the Academic Toolbox. He also develops documentation for and on the use of educational technologies, and contributes to various projects at the University such as Office 365 for Faculty and Staff, and Transforming the Instructional Landscape.