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Source: Sue Maes, 785-532-5644,
Photo available. Contact or 785-532-2535.

Friday, Nov. 19, 2010


MANHATTAN -- The WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies, known as WCET, is honoring Sue Maes, dean of continuing education and co-director of the Institute for Academic Alliances at Kansas State University, with the Richard Jonsen Award.

The award is given annually to a WCET member whose career has been committed to improving postsecondary educational programs and services through innovative uses of technology. The award also recognizes Maes' exceptional service to WCET, a membership organization that works to accelerate the adoption of effective practices and policies, advancing excellence in technology-enhanced teaching and learning in higher education. The announcement was made at WCET's recent annual membership conference in La Jolla, Calif.

"Maes' work has made a major difference in advancing opportunities for rural adults to access postsecondary education -- an area that's of critical importance today," said Ellen Wagner, WCET's executive director. "She's also a nationally recognized expert on the establishment and sustainability of academic collaborations, and has played a pivotal role in the creation of several educational consortia."

Maes helped launch the Great Plains Interactive Distance Education Alliance, -- which offers online graduate course work and programs in the human sciences -- and the Big 12 Engineering Consortium, -- which offers distance education programs in nuclear engineering. In addition, Maes served as president of the University Continuing Education Association and was inducted into the International Adult and Continuing Education Hall of Fame in 2000.

Maes' engagement with WCET began in the organization's earliest years. She and other WCET members helped institutions and states to extend educational programs and services via videoconferencing networks, assisting them with technical, programmatic, and student support services requirements. Maes guided the creation of several WCET programs that continue today, including a consortium for doctoral nursing education and an e-learning consortia wiki.

The award is named in honor of Richard Jonsen, the WICHE executive director who founded WCET in 1989.

"We are pleased to honor Sue Maes for her commitment to improving rural access to education and lifelong learning, her belief in the strength of communities and partnerships, and her vision for finding effective and pragmatic technology solutions to expand access to education," Wagner said.

More information about the Richard Jonsen Award is available on WCET's website,