The iSchool welcomed two new lecturers this summer. Elizabeth Wickes (MS '16) began her position as lecturer on June 16, and John Weible began his position as senior lecturer on July 16. They will contribute to the development and teaching of information technology-related courses for both the MS/LIS and MS/IM programs.
Wickes came to the iSchool from the University Library, where she worked for the past two years as a data curation specialist. Prior to starting her MS/LIS studies, she held positions as project coordinator, data curator, and curation manager with WolframAlpha in Champaign. As an iSchool MS student, Wickes served as a research assistant in the Center for Informatics Research in Science and Scholarship (CIRSS). This past year she taught Foundations of Information Processing (IS 452) as an adjunct lecturer. Since 2013, she has served as co-organizer of the Champaign-Urbana Python User Group.
"I am very interested in understanding how programming is learned, particularly by students and researchers from the humanities and arts. So working with combinations of MS/LIS and MS/IM students is perfect," said Wickes.
Wickes is a certified instructor for Software Carpentry, a volunteer organization whose goal is to teach scientists basic lab skills for research computing. "I was able to gain my certification during my MS/LIS coursework at the iSchool because of the wonderful flexibility of our program. I look forward to continuing that instruction in our campus community," she said.
Weible worked for the University Library from 1998-2010 as a network analyst, director of library systems, and manager of IT infrastructure and software development. Beginning in 2010, he served as cofounder and president of Sharp Moon Inc., which developed and provides the Callisto service to assist research libraries with management of e-content. Since 2012, he also has been an iSchool adjunct lecturer, teaching Introduction to Databases (IS 490DB) on campus and online. Most recently, he taught Foundations of Information Processing (IS 452).
"This fall I start a new course, Programming for Analytics and Data Processesing (IS 590PR), which is aimed at deepening students' programming skills, especially the aspects that lead to higher quality code and better collaborative development," Weible said. "Originally, we were targeting only students who had taken IS 452 or one or two other programming classes, but an interesting challenge is that many of our incoming MS/IM students already have a degree in computer science or some professional programming experience. I’m working on how to leverage their collective and varied experience, through group work to better simulate real-world team development situations."
Wickes and Weible look forward to teaching full time and sharing their real-world experience and technical expertise with iSchool students.