Below are testimonials regarding my consulting, speaking, and training.
Given his extensive experience and expertise, the University of Dayton retained Gavin to review our assessment practices in the division of student development. It included a two day campus visit. During that time, Gavin facilitated an assessment workshop, met with divisional staff to develop and enhance skills for writing learning outcomes, and provided a road map for improvement of our assessment practices based on the infrastructure that he helped us design. Gavin’s high quality teaching and interpersonal skills resulted in a very productive two day experience for us. He shaped a culture within the division that now appreciates and values the need for assessment to continuously improve programs and services designed to foster learning and enhance the student development experience. Since his visit, the division has developed a sound reputation on campus for its quality of work in assessment.
Vice President for Student Development
University of Dayton
Gavin provided mentorship and guidance to the Student Affairs Division during our work to resolve issues identified by Middle States. He helped us to understand easy and useful ways off assessing student learning and effectiveness across the activities of the Division. Since our work with Gavin we have fostered a culture of assessment that has helped guide our Division. This has helped our Division demonstrate its impact to the student experience and obtain additional resources to support program growth. Since his visit, Gavin has remained a valuable resource even after our formal relationship concluded. He has provided ongoing support and served as a sounding board for our team. The staff in the Division routinely refer back to the ideas Gavin provided as we continue to develop a culture of assessment.
Gregory H. Krikorian
Vice President of Student Affairs & Dean of Students
Lebanon Valley College
This year we had the pleasure of welcoming Dr. Gavin Henning as our keynote speaker to the Annual Student Affairs Assessment Symposium at the University at Albany. Dr. Henning’s presentation was insightful, informative, and reached an audience diverse in their knowledge of assessment and student learning. After his keynote, attendees understood that student affairs assessment is not just an activity, but a state of mind and is vital to the success of any Student Affairs division. One attendee stated that they left the conference with a “can do” attitude towards assessment because of Dr. Henning’s keynote. We would be happy to have Dr. Henning back in the future.
Michael N. Christakis, Ph.D.
Vice President for Student Success & Public Service Professor
University at Albany
As financial pressures across the post secondary sector continue so do the pressures on Student Affairs units to demonstrate their effectiveness. In order to help the various service units better understand how to develop realistic and measurable outcomes that help demonstrate the impact of their work, Gavin was brought in to provide a foundation in assessment in student affairs. Gavin made an important topic exciting and engaging for all who attended. Those who attended left feeling inspired and encouraged that there were simple actions that could be done to make a big difference. I knew the day was worthwhile and a hit when I received emails from people who were not able to attend saying “I heard about the assessment workshop that was hosted. It is not fair that I was not able to go because my colleague came back raving about the workshop and I feel like I have missed out. Please bring Gavin back so I can benefit like my colleagues.” Gavin made a topic accessible and I have instantly notice the positive change that has been made in the way that people do their work.
Associate Director, Student Services
British Columbia Institute of Technology
In April, 2015, Gavin provided the keynote address for our first assessment training day for student affairs staff at Cornell. The title of his talk was “Building and Sustaining a Culture of Evidence.” I invited him to give this talk because I had heard him give it at the University at Albany earlier in the year, and I thought it was just what our staff needed to hear to shift their perspectives about assessment and understand its value to them and their work as well as to our students. Not only did he ask very important questions about what I was hoping to accomplish during this training day, he also helped me design the rest of the content; and it was just right!
In addition to the keynote, Gavin also provided a break-out session titled “Writing SMARRT Learning Outcomes.” Both of these talks were very well-received. In fact, I credit Gavin with doing exactly what I had hoped: inspiring our staff to see themselves as capable of doing assessment, and more importantly, that doing it is critical to the success of our students. Now, three months later, we are still referring to Gavin’s talk and the time he spent with us to inform our processes and our decisions about assessment. And just today, I recommended him to a colleague at another institution. In our evaluation of the day, we asked staff about the impact assessment can have on their work.
Leslie S. Meyerhoff, Ph.D.
Director, Assessment and Planning
This has been, by far, the best training on assessment we have attended. It has allowed our division to not only better understand assessment, but Dr. Henning has helped us approach assessment in a more manageable way and helped us think about how to incorporate assessment into our everyday work. He has helped us to see this not as an additional job responsibility, but has helped us make this an everyday component to our work. Dr. Henning’s approach to assessment has helped provide a philosophical reason for its existence and has had an inspirational effect on us and helped us all connect the dots.
Katie De Oliviera, MPC, Ed.D.
Director of the Academic Success Center
Interim Assistant Director of Campus Recreation
Southern Connecticut State University
Gavin and I worked together for over five years, developing training events for administrators in higher education. I watched him present to small and large groups, and he was one of the highest reviewed presenters I’ve worked with in over eight years of training. Gavin has a unique gift to connect with the audience, intrinsically understand where they are in terms of learning needs, and meet those needs. He comes to the session prepared with content and application exercises, but is able to modify as necessary. Needless to say, Gavin has a strong grasp of the material, in these cases, on outcomes-based assessment. In addition, Gavin’s diverse student affairs background allows him to customize content for different areas of the institution, speaking to residence life, student conduct, and overall student development with ease. Participants in his sessions are often spell-bound until the last minute!
Marla P. Whipple
Senior Director of In-person Training and Events
Assessment is now some of the most important work we do in Student Affairs and Gavin Henning is among our most talented colleagues in this area. Gavin conducted a day-long training for a regional group of colleagues designed to equip us to be consultative resources for small schools in Oregon and Washington. The information he provided is now an important part of how we provide this service.
Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students
University of Puget Sound
Gavin spent the day with Wesleyan’s Student Affairs team. We began the day with some training that established, strengthened and/or refined the foundation for assessment within the Division, including building a useful “tool kit” of assessment techniques. During the rest of the day, Gavin met in small groups with each of the departments and functional teams to review and evaluate the assessment initiatives in each specific area. The entire group felt that their work with Gavin was exceedingly helpful and enabled them to adjust their strategies such that they gather useful data that drives decision-making as well as provides evidence of student-learning.
Michael J. Whaley
Vice President for Student Affairs
As we started our Division of Student Affairs’ Assessment Initiative from the ground up, Gavin was instrumental in empowering and training our assessment team to lead the effort. He came to our site and trained our departments’ managers and leaders to get to the same level of assessment knowledge. While here, he also provided private consultation to managers on their specific department’s efforts and overall championed our division’s growing assessment efforts. Giving us tools and ideas on how to embed assessment into every day practice will save time and give us the data that we need to show the impact of our services in support of the campus mission and student success, learning and engagement.
Associate Dean, Student Academic Support Services
University of California, Santa Barbara
We recently brought Dr. Henning to our campus to lead a consultation workshops for our student life staff involved with department assessment effort. He skillfully structured the session based on materials and questions supplied before the workshop. This resulted in an informative, detail-oriented training that has had profound impact on our approaches to assessment. Dr. Henning, shared a wealth of relevant examples and practical resources. He is highly knowledgeable in the area of student affairs assessment and clearly a leader in the field. Feedback from participants was very positive, citing his passion, preparation, and personalized, interactive presentation. I highly recommend Dr. Henning as a consultant who can effectively assist a group in creating student development assessment plans and processes.
Associate Director, Student Health
Chair, Student Life Assessment Committee
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute