back to news April 3, 2020

Laura Seeger keeps calm and carries on

When the College of Arts and Sciences asked for nominations of students, faculty and staff who have stepped up to the massive challenge of moving approximately 4,000 classes online in two weeks, Laura Seeger was nominated not once, but three times.

“Laura Seeger, the department’s web and eLearning manager, has been a leader and a bedrock of support for the Department of History as we transitioned to remote and virtual teaching,” said Department of History Chair Scott Levi. “With her characteristic calm, good humor and eloquence, she embraced the task of shepherding our faculty to online teaching.”

The Department of History, with its 66 faculty and over 65 courses this semester, includes a wide range of technical knowledge and familiarity with online teaching. Seeger said when Ohio State first announced it was moving to virtual education, people had a lot of questions about how to make that work.

“Everyone has a different amount of ability, and what I’ve really loved is helping people who didn’t use as much technology in the classroom learn how to use it and then see them be so excited when they’re successful,” Seeger said. “We were able to collaborate on what different solutions were for each teacher and each course, and that was really nice."

Throughout the whirlwind, Seeger held a live Zoom training session and taught faculty members how to use Carmen. She organized a Carmen page to act as a one-stop-shop for important information and a place for faculty to discuss virtual teaching questions, successes and resources. 

She worked to move dissertation defenses online, and she created a video from the department chair to spread calm and help students feel more comfortable with the transition. She updated the department’s website to ensure the latest updates from around campus were easily accessible.

“Laura Seeger has been an invaluable resource for faculty as they prepared, some for the first time, to teach online,” said Rhonda Maynard, administrative associate in the Department of History. “She held Zoom training sessions, provided help with Carmen, assisted faculty with video production and offered a shoulder to cry on. Laura Seeger went above and beyond. She deserves a big ‘Thank you!’”

Seeger said she was just focused on making the process easier for her colleagues, an effort recognized throughout the department. She answered question after question, fielded concern after concern, solved problem after problem — all efficiently, professionally and with remarkable grace and kindness, Levi said.

“If there is a personification to the old British adage of 'Keep calm and carry on,' it is Laura,” Levi said. “Thanks to her, faculty in the Department of History were as ready as we could be to bring our traditional high-quality education to our students. It’s not too much an exaggeration that without her, we would have been lost. Laura Seeger is a true testament to the talent, commitment and teamwork of the Arts and Sciences."

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