Meet the Staff: Gail Thomas, BA

Gail-250Gail Thomas is the Training Coordinator for the Education & Training Partnership, an organization within Granite State College which has contracted with the New Hampshire Division for Children, Youth and Families (DCYF) to provide education and training to foster and adoptive parents, residential child care staff, non-licensed relative caregivers, and other eligible community members.

Gail’s role at E & TP is a natural fit. Gail has extensive community volunteer experience, including with the local police department, participating in programs including 911 registrations for people with mental health and other disabilities, car seat safety day, youth attendant program, and is the co-coordinator of the yearly golf tournament to benefit the local Police Explorers. She has been a hospice volunteer for the past three and a half years.  In that role, she is also the volunteer coordinator of the hospice mentor program for new hospice volunteers.  In addition to patient support, she periodically provides trainings for new volunteers within the hospice program.

Gail’s responsibilities at E & TP include working to identify community training needs and finding the right instructors to help meet those needs. For example, in the Spring 2013 term, E & TP will be adding one new online class to the schedule, for a total of 19 online trainings to support the foster care community. Gail also handles logistical issues such as class locations and scheduling, as well as identifying courses to transition to the online environment and implementing that transition. Each term, E & TP takes one or two classroom-based trainings and adapts them to Moodle Community. Gail is also currently working on moving e-workbook classes, which are PDF documents with embedded web links, into Moodle Community for more streamlined functionality.

Gail notes that the support, modeling, and training she has received from the Educational Technology team has made it possible for her to provide the Instructional Design for E & TP online trainings in Moodle Community. This has allowed the E & TP programs to begin to incorporate new technologies as appropriate to their clients. E & TP staff recently used the web-based tool Xtranormal to create avatars in a training to demonstrate “active listening”.  YouTube is also a tool that has some valuable resource material for the foster/adoptive community.

“The Education and Training partnership is maximizing accessibility to training by offering Moodle Community classes.”  
When asked what guiding principles or advice she would offer to faculty as they begin to think about their own course development as they are integrating educational technology, she simply answered, “Presence, presence, presence.”

Whether classroom based, workbook based or online, courses are delivered in a supportive atmosphere that recognizes participants’ level of experience.

Gail is a New Hampshire native.  She and her husband have two adult sons, and two adolescent labs (one chocolate and one yellow).

To contact Gail send an email to: gail.thomas@granite.edu

For more information about the Education & Training Partnership, see http://etp.granite.edu/, http://etp.granite.edu/schedule and http://etp.granite.edu/learnmore.