On September 4, 2018, Victoria (Tori) Mondelli became the founding director of the University of Missouri’s Teaching for Learning Center.
Previously, Mondelli was the executive director of the Office of Teaching Excellence and Engaged Learning at Mercy College. She joined Mercy College in 2012 as director of its Teaching and Learning Center. A year later, she was promoted to executive director of the Office of Teaching Excellence and Engaged Learning, where she managed the Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning (FCTL) and the Center for Academic Excellence and Innovation.
At Mercy, Mondelli directed faculty development and managed FCTL offerings that included advancing innovative pedagogy and promoting evidence-based instructional practices, along with providing guidance on educational technology, open educational resources and course redesigns. She transformed Mercy’s FCTL from a center attracting and serving a minority of already engaged faculty members to a center engaging a majority of faculty on campus.
Prior to joining Mercy College, Mondelli directed the Center for Excellence in Teaching, Learning and Scholarship for The City University of New York’s (CUNY) Borough of Manhattan Community College from 2010-12.
Mondelli began her career in higher education as coordinator of disability services at Fordham University. She also served as a resident director and student affairs adviser during her time at Fordham. She was an adjunct faculty member within the CUNY system from 2001-2009, before becoming an assistant professor of history at CUNY’s Brooklyn College from 2009-2010.
She received a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Hamilton College in 1995, a master’s degree in modern European history from Fordham University in 1998, and a doctorate in early modern European history from The Graduate Center of The City University of New York in 2009.
Lydia received her doctorate in Development, Learning, and Diversity from Vanderbilt University in 2017. She then spent two years as a principal investigator on a research project funded by a National Science Foundation postdoctoral fellowship. Through her research and teaching, Lydia has focused on understanding the educational experiences of underrepresented minority postsecondary students and on how to nurture inclusive and engaging classroom environments. Prior to working in higher education, Lydia was a public school teacher for exceptional students in the DC metropolitan region and completed a master’s degree in special education at the University of Virginia. Lydia’s attention to the social context of learning has roots in her undergraduate major studies in sociology at Georgetown University, where she minored in history and spent a semester at the University of Cape Town, South Africa.
Jonathan Cisco, Ph.D., joins MU as Associate Director of the Teaching For Learning Center. His research focuses on literacy practices in higher education, including demystifying challenging concepts across the disciplines. His current work explores graduate student and new faculty development and has been published in Higher Education Research and Development, Journal of Further and Higher Education, and Literacy Research and Instruction. His teaching and faculty training has been recognized by the Higher Education Academy in the United Kingdom with the award of Senior Fellow.
Kelly is an alumna of Mizzou and has served as staff for over twenty-three years. She began at Educational Technologies (formerly Distance Learning Design Center) as office support, and quickly found her niche supporting teaching in many different roles. For the last four years, she has supported the virtual T4LC by providing coordination of programs such as Celebration of Teaching, Teaching Renewal Week, New Faculty Orientation, and Teaching Academy sessions. She is very excited about the new Teaching for Learning Center, and looks forward to her continued work in shaping its bright future. Her education includes an M. Ed. in Higher and Continuing Education with special interest in educational technologies from the University of Missouri and a BA with a teaching certificate from Eastern Illinois University.
Jonathan is the most recent addition to the Teaching for Learning Center staff, and is serving as the primary office support assistant to Director Tori Mondelli and Program Coordinator Kelly Holtkamp. Jonathan is a recent alumnus of the University of Missouri-Columbia, graduated August of 2018 after completing a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Studies with an emphasis in Peace Studies. Jonathan is looking forward to assisting the vision of the Teaching for Learning Center, and helping the Center reach its fullest potential to impact faculty, staff, and students.
Graduate Research Assistant
Ransford Pinto is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis at the University of Missouri-Columbia. His research focuses on the intersection of race and gender in educational leadership, educational leadership preparation in a global context, and educational equity and social justice in the P-20 system. Ransford is currently examining the educational and career successes of Black Women in Senior Leadership Positions in U.S 4-year public Universities. He has articles published in the Educational Review, Journal of Negro Education, and Frontiers. Prior to his doctoral studies, Ransford worked at the British Council, Accra Ghana as the administrator in charge of the University of Cambridge International Exams. He received a B. Ed degree in Basic Education from the University of Cape Coast, Ghana and a Master’s degree in Public Affairs from the University of Missouri’s Harry S. Truman School of Public Affairs.