Highlighting a Woman in Tech: Laura Pasquini

by Kristen Abell

I’m not sure there’s many questions I need to answer about why I chose Laura Pasquini for one of our “highlight a woman” posts except one: What took you so long?

Laura has long been an inspiration to me and other women when it comes to technology in higher ed. Because I don’t think I could do her the justice she deserves in this blog post, I asked her to answer a few questions for our readers to give a better idea of why she is so amazing. First, a little background…

Laura A. Pasquini is a doctoral student in Applied Technology and Performance Improvement, Department of Learning Technologies, at the University of North Texas.  She is also an Academic Counselor and Instructor with the Office for Exploring Majors, Undergraduate Studies at the University of North Texas.  Laura holds an M.S. Ed in Elementary Teacher Education from Niagara University, NY, and an honors B.A. in History. Her professional experience in higher education include academic advising, tutoring services, supplemental instruction, career advising, campus activities, first year experience curriculum, orientation programs and housing/residence life. Laura’s research and consulting interests include the effects of emerging technology with regards to collaborative learning environments and shared learning networks for education, training, and professional development.

In response to a prompt we had previously posted, Laura had this to say about her introduction to technology:

I think that my prolegomenon to technology was definitely the Commodore 64. I was introduced to this machine at a young age, thanks to my father.

(And can I just say, I am wicked impressed with her use of “prolegomenon” – a word I now need to find a way to work into my regular conversations I think.)

What do you think about the role of women in technology today?

I am proud to be part of the growing population of ladies who work and support technology. There are a number of #edtech and #satech women who have been contributing to their field for years – with resources, blog posts, podcasts, tweets, training workshops, resources, and ideas. I give credit to a number of women in technology who have blazed the trail before me. Technology is such a vast field – I am honored to know and collaborate with a number of women who research new media, write code, design graphics & games, teach in the field, and MORE! Many women are playing well in the technology sandbox, and I only think that will thrive as technology competencies are in demand for the field of K-12 and higher education.

Laura shared how she connected with other #womentech in a video for blogger Jess Faulk’s presentation on this topic previously:

Do you have plans for future pursuits in technology?

During the last three years, I have been grinding out my doctoral course work, teaching classes, and working as an academic counselor — so it wasn’t until recently that I have had to ponder this question. I know that I will continue to research technology in learning, training, and professional development, and most likely apply technology to whatever field or area I end up in after my degree is complete. I have been fortunate to work with a number of professional associations to use technology for various reasons, including mentoring, collaborative working groups, sustainable leadership and transition, professional association partnerships, and learning initiatives. I have worked in higher education for just over 10 years, so I am now pondering my future path towards a tenured faculty position, hybrid instructional designing/faculty/professional position, consultant, or a combination of all of the above with technology. Should you want to read more about what I’ve been up to at UNT (and then some), you can check out my ATPI Doctoral Portfolio that recently qualified me to be a PhD candidate. Otherwise  I will probably share my professional plans and where technology takes me next via my blog as I ponder this while trucking through my dissertation and other fun other projects on and off campus.

Here is Laura talking about how she explores new technology:

And because this is me, I had to ask one question for fun:

What is your favorite “geek chic” item/accessory?

If I had to look up geek chic in urban dictionary, then I doubt I have any items of said nature. I do have a Batman ring & I will sport an ink mustache on me before 2012 is out – but I think I’m nerdy in different ways.

Connect and share with Laura at http://about.me/laurapasquini.

Do you know a woman in tech that you’d like to see us highlight? Let us know by emailing sawomentalktech@gmail.com!

Tags: , , ,

  • http://joesabado.com Joe Sabado

    Laura’s an inspiration to me as well! She probably doesn’t know it so that’s why I’m sharing this now. I’m amazed at all the things she does, always learning and doing new things.
    I think what is so cool about Laura is that she is very generous in that she is always promoting/sharing the work of other people, including mine. She also provided me the opportunity to be a reviewer of a journal she works on. I really appreciate that she is willing to take the time to help others in this way. She also shares so many valuable resources I find a lot of times just using to do more exploration.

    She’s one of the few folks who introduced me to the concept of Personal Learning Network. I can’t even imagine where my professional development and learning would be if I had not been introduced to this concept by Laura. I’ve learned so much from connecting with other colleagues in social media, including Kristen herself!

    Thank you Laura and thanks Kristen for recognizing her:)