Michigan Virtual Board welcomes new members

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The Michigan Virtual Board of Directors elected three new members at its April 19 meeting.

The three new members expressed significant interest in the work of Michigan Virtual to serve Michigan’s K-12 community with quality online educational services and welcome the opportunity to serve on the Michigan Virtual Board. They were elected to three-year terms. The Michigan Virtual Board consists of members representing the business and education communities.

The new board members are James Lorenson, President of Gogebic Community College; Gretchen Dziadosz, Executive Director of the Michigan Education Association; and Kevin Oxley, Superintendent of Jackson County Intermediate School District.

Board Member Profiles
James Lorenson, President of Gogebic Community College (Ironwood)

Jim has served as the President of Gogebic Community College since 2006. He is the Executive and Administrative Officer of the college which has approximately 1,500 students. Previously, Jim served as the Dean of Instruction at GCC and was responsible for the planning, organizing, implementation and administration of the college’s educational programs. During the last 20 years, he has served in other roles at the college, including Community/Industry Coordinator, Director of Institutional Advancement, Director of Community Services & Continuing Education, Director of Off-Campus and On-Line Programs, and Director of Extended Programs and College Facilities.

Gretchen Dziadosz, Executive Director of the Michigan Education Association (East Lansing)

Gretchen has spent more than 30 years with the MEA and has worked in different capacities, including UniServ Director, Statewide Bargaining Consultant, Director of Negotiations & Northern Zone Field Services Director, Director of Professional Development and Human Relations, and Director of Field Services. In 2012, she was named Executive Director of the MEA. She is responsible for all staff and operations for the Michigan Education Association, MEA-Financial Services and Michigan Education Special Services Association.

Kevin Oxley, Superintendent of Jackson County Intermediate School District (Jackson)

Kevin has 25 years of experience working in public education. He most recently served as the Director of Career & Secondary Education at the Intermediate School District, before being named Superintendent in 2009. Kevin began his career in Reed City, Michigan, as a high school social studies teacher. He has served as a high school vice-principal and principal at different school districts.

Outgoing board members are Chris Wigent, Wayne RESA; Carol Churchill, Mid-Michigan Community College; and Lou Battaglieri, formerly with the MEA.

About Michigan Virtual

Michigan Virtual is a private, nonprofit Michigan corporation established by the State of Michigan in 1998 to serve as a champion for online learning. It is the parent organization of the Michigan Virtual for Students and Michigan Virtual Learning Research Institute.

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About Michigan Virtual

Michigan Virtual™ (formally known as Michigan Virtual University®) provides online courses for Michigan students, professional development for educators and is the parent organization of the Michigan Virtual Learning Research Institute®. As a nonprofit organization with more than 20 years of experience, Michigan Virtual is Michigan’s leading voice in online education. Visit us at michiganvirtual.org.

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Limited Course Capacity

We’re sorry to inform you that we have reached capacity for several of our Semester 1 and Trimester 1 courses. You’ll notice when attempting to enroll students in our Student Learning Portal that some courses are unavailable. While we are no longer accepting new enrollments for these courses at this time, many courses continue to remain open for enrollment.

With many students across the state 100% remote, demand for our online courses is greater than ever before. Because every course we offer is taught by a Michigan-certified teacher, this high volume of enrollments has created capacity issues for our teachers who provide each and every student with individual feedback.

While the Michigan Virtual team anticipated and planned for significant increases in student enrollments this Fall, the increased demand we’ve experienced has been unprecedented. As a result, we are taking steps to hire even more part-and full-time teachers to support larger numbers of student enrollments for Semester 2 as well as for Trimester 2 and 3. 

For schools that still need online learning options this year, please fill out the form at the bottom of our virtual pathways page to meet with someone to discuss other solutions. While some of our teacher-led courses are full, we may still have the capacity to help you in upcoming terms or can discuss timing to implement a whole-school or collaborative program in which local teachers from your school/district use our online course content to teach students. We also have free course content and resources available for you to use.

We know this is an incredibly stressful time for all, and we’re sorry if the courses you’re looking for are unavailable. We never want to turn away a student who wants to learn from us. Our top concern, however, is student success, and we have a policy to not take on additional enrollments if we cannot guarantee that all students will have a quality online learning experience. 

We appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate the unusually high volume of enrollments we are receiving.