CPS Announces Experiential Learning Award Winners

The Experiential Learning Awards are a recognition opportunity for students within the College of Professional Studies. They are awarded to students who have successfully integrated the classroom with real world projects, going above and beyond in their educational journeys. Our programs engage students with the world through professional work, research, and service on seven continents. They learn how to transform ideas into impact and become global citizens with successful careers.

Each year we recognize outstanding students who demonstrate great skills while on Co-op, through XN projects or sponsorship, through the Experiential Learning Awards. We hear nominations of highly accomplished students about what they were able to accomplish through our experiential opportunities. The students selected for these awards are nominated by their Co-op employers, XN Project Sponsors, Faculty or staff. The awards are broken down into three main categories: Co-op Excellence, XN Excellence, and Humanics.

Cooperative Excellence Award Winners

This award is for students who have demonstrated dedication and success in improving their organization through their workplace contributions and experiential learning.

Chi Doan
BS Management

“Chi Doan is a student who epitomizes Northeastern University’s goal of preparing students for. Chi is an international F1 student who started her academic journey in the College of Professional Studies in the Fall of 2018. She is a BS-Management candidate who will graduate in May 2021. Chi’s focus on her academic and professional development is unlike any student I have worked with as both an Academic Advisor and Adjunct Instructor. Academically, she has maintained a GPA of 3.986 with one course remaining. Professionally, she has sought out opportunities to obtain experiential learning activities that made her a highly sought after candidate.

Initially, Chi prepared herself by taking the XN prep course, INT2000 in the Spring of 2019. I had firsthand knowledge of her work in this course since we often met to discuss her resume and professional development goals. In CPS’ Academic Advising Office in the Fall of 2019, I leveraged a number of Chi’s marketing skills and self-sponsored an 8-week XN Project (INT2001) that helped me streamline communications to a cohort of international students. In the Spring of 2020, Chi obtained a 6-month, full-time Co-op (COP3945) at Wayfair as a Marketing Analyst where she led app marketing and email optimization campaigns. While initially on-site, Chi successfully transitioned to remote work when the global pandemic hit. In the Fall of 2020, she took on a part-time Co-op (COP3944) at LogRhythm where she executed webinar promotional campaigns. Also in the Fall of 2020, Chi enrolled in a 3-credit Experiential Management Practicum (MGT4995) and worked with a local non-profit, ThinkGive. Under Chi’s leadership, her team received the client’s highest accolades. I was the Instructor for this course and can also attest to the quality of Chi’s outputs.

It is with utmost pleasure that I submit Chi Doan for Northeastern University’s Experiential Learning Award. She has been the steward of her professional development and is a shining example of experiential learning in action. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me if I can provide any additional information in support of my recommendation.” – Mark Almeida

Rohan Pappu
MPS Analytics

“Rohan interned at our project, Our Youth Social Community which manufactures and distributes Organic(100%) pads to rural women in India (3.5 lakh pads per month). He handled 4 teams of Indian Institute of Management, MBA students in our Organisation. Total group he organised was 4 and our project is about menstruation(Project Suraksha). Rohan helped all these 4 groups in researching the information or data regarding the napkins and menstruation. That led us to be on a successful path. Now our project is helpful for more than 42,00,000 girls in India. It’s not only increased our organisation’s reputation but also helpful for so many young girls in India (>42,00,000). He is a stronger team leader, and an even greater human being! Many Thanks to Rohan!” – Sohan Pappu

XN Excellence Award Winners

Experiential Network (XN) helps Northeastern University students work in their respective fields while working with different sponsors on a wide array of projects. The XN Experiential Awards celebrated a student who excelled in their XN curricular course project by applying knowledge gained in their academic program through the integration of key theoretical elements and related practical experiences.

Victoria Moore
Doctor of Education

“I would like to congratulate Victoria Moore for her achievements in extending experiential learning opportunities to children and faculty by establishing a community school in Zimbabwe. Wildwoods School, https://www.wildwoodsinternational.com/, champions a student-centered vision, as evidenced by the statement, “We believe in holistic education that commits to developing the whole child, inspiring our scholars to be global leaders advocating for our environment, community and beyond within a sustainable school environment, embodies experiential learning for the youngest of learners. When I first met Victoria, she engaged in an action research project through her coursework to make this vision a reality. Designing with students and families at the center, she began with a home preschool and has just realized her dream of opening an elementary school designed to provide the children of her community with access to high-quality, accessible education designed for positive global impact. Over the past two courses, I have witnessed an entrepreneurial educator’s grit, perseverance, and leadership. Victoria faced numerous barriers and challenges to making her vision come to life. With the encouragement of her community, she persevered. Wildwoods is just in its early stages, and Victoria understands the significance of teacher efficacy in making the experience successful for the students. As a part of the experiential learning course, she has designed a professional learning model built on the tenets of experiential learning so that her faculty has the tools and skills needed to deliver education through an experiential learning model.” – Paula Dillon

Watch Victoria’s nomination video

Vanessa Leyva
MS Project Management

Vanessa participated in the XN project with BreastFeedLA. BreastFeedLA is a non profit advocacy group based in Los Angeles that was seeking assistance from Northeastern for a Marketing Plan to promote their breastfeeding courses. BreastFeedLA was looking to outreach to potential students who represented the ethnic and cultural diversity of LA County in order to promote breastfeeding to a wide range of communities. Vanessa and her team developed user personas based on feedback from the XN sponsor. These personas formed the basis of the marketing strategies for the entire course. Vanessa spearheaded the idea of user personas, identified people to interview so that they could capture intentions, requirements and sentiments. Vanessa’s approach is a clear example of leveraging a methodology taught in the PJM courses with a practical application such as a non profit’s marketing strategy. By using personas, identifying actual people to interview, Vanessa was able to create authentic profiles that BreastFeedLA can refer to in the future. Vanessa’s approach sets a template that the organization can re-use in any subsequent Marketing efforts. Vanessa’s creativity and proactive approach in this XN project represents Northeastern students at their finest. I recommend Vanessa without hesitation. ” – Mimi Wan

Humanics Award Winners

Humanics is specifically the integration of technical literacy, data literacy, and human literacy. This award celebrates and highlights a student who exhibits and demonstrates Humanics, contributes significantly to the understanding of the universe, and practices lifelong learning by combining technical, data, and interpersonal skills throughout their Northeastern career and within their respective communities.

Rachael Elliott
Master of Education

Rachael worked tirelessly to develop a self-designed and scoped multi-component project, with both immediate and long-term utility, to address a current problem of practice she identified. Her intense commitment to this project was striking, as is her final work: – A fully developed and Creative Commons Licensed repository – The International Student Support Repository (ISSR). It can be accessed at www.internationalstudentsupport.org – A sample conference presentation (voice narrated) that demonstrates how she will introduce this project to the international education community. The presentation is titled “Harnessing Open Educational Resources for Faculty, Staff, and Community Training: A Pathway to Improving International Student Outcomes.” (Available on request.) – A virtual tour of the ISSR (which can also be found on the main page of the website): https://sites.google.com/view/international-student-outcomes/video-tour?authuser=0 Rachael shared, in the end, “This will never be complete or finished!” She got very, very deep into this work and is committed to lifelong learning and service. She added, “I’d love to be a sponsor/mentor for a future student who is engaging in something similar. I am so grateful I was able to work with Jaime, and hope I’m able to support someone just as fully in in the future.” Like Jaime, Rachael is committed to serving and supporting future NEU M.Ed. students in their XN experiences.” – Joan Burkhardt, Professor

Dandi Zheng
MS Commerce & Economic Development

Dandi was so passionate about applying her mathematical modeling and statistical techniques to addressing an interesting and timely question. Along with another team member, she looked into the video streaming industry that became much more popular in the COVID-19 era. Specifically, she assessed the operational performance of video streaming firms (e.g., Netflix and Disney+) and examined the relationship between their performance scores and stock prices. To that end, she combined nonparametric analysis with parametric analysis. Her project was not only methodologically rigorous but also practically intriguing to investors and industry experts. She committed a lot of time to the project and I believe she is a strong candidate for the award.” – Youngbok Ryu

Watch Dandi’s nomination video

Congratulations to all of this year’s Experiential Learning Award winners!