The Instructional Design & Technology team provides comprehensive course development and teaching support through our team of highly-qualified professionals. Our team comes from a diverse range of backgrounds from academia and industry, ensuring that you receive the right resources and support, no matter the teaching modality or course delivery method.

Instructional designers, instructional technologists, and multimedia developers provide individualized support and coaching to faculty, based on industry best practices, research, and our own experiences as faculty. For course development, our team collaborates closely with faculty to design high-quality courses that achieve course objectives, follow industry best practices and research, and incorporate appropriate technology and media to support all learners.

Our Instructional Design and Technology teams are organized into three cohorts to support the six academic colleges of our institution. This organizational pattern enables us to meet our institutional objectives and offer robust support for all faculty. We look forward to working with you!



Meredith Hass
Director of Instructional Design & Technology

Meredith earned a B.S. in Nutritional Science, M.Ed. in Teaching and Learning, and a Graduate Certificate in Online Teaching. Her early career choices in restaurant management, food safety & food science, and nutrition led her to a full-time faculty position with Connecticut Culinary Institute. She has been teaching online and F2F since 2007 and is currently an online adjunct and course developer with JWU. Her experience as an Instructional Technologist, Instructional Coach, and Director of eLearning has further sparked her passion for the overarching teaching and learning process. Meredith resides in CT with her husband and their two dogs CJ & Finn.


Liz Fisher Sullivan, Ed.D.
Manager of Instructional Design

Liz Fisher Sullivan is a historian and mariner by training and has spent most of her career as interdisciplinary faculty for undergraduate students aboard sailing research vessels in the Atlantic and Pacific. She came to equity work through the lived experience of guiding college students through the context of arriving and researching in developing island nations, centered on themes of decolonization, and social and environmental policies. When transitioning to land life, she channeled her passion for equitable and accessible education into online course delivery, designing programs for the advancement and licensing of merchant mariners worldwide. She has taught at several universities, including JWU. In addition to Instructional Design, Liz teaches as an adjunct for COE and is a doctoral student in JWU’s Educational Leadership program. She spends her off time with her equally salt-water-loving husband and daughter near the ocean, and in the woods with her not-so-salt-water loving son and dog.


Tina Austin
Manager of Instructional Technology

Tina found her passion for education while serving on Active Duty in the USAF. After receiving her BS in Social Psychology and her MAED in Education/Adult Education and Training, she spent the last 3 years of her service teaching the Intelligence Operations Analysis course, which consisted of 7 different blocks (or courses) of instruction that ranged from Military Doctrine, Search and Rescue, Organizational Behavior, Briefing Skills, and much more. Tina continued in the field of education when she worked for Northrop Grumman as a Course Designer, USAF Civil Service as an Instructional Systems Specialist, and at the Naval War College as a Visual Information Specialist/Designer. Tina joined JWU in 2014, as a Content Developer and was later promoted to the Manager of Instructional Technology where she manages a staff of twelve Instructional Technologists. She helped build the original online Foundations of Leadership course with the developer and enjoys teaching the class online as well. Tina lives in Rhode Island and helps raise her three grandsons and fury friend Osker (a yorkie, mini poodle, mini schnauzer mix). She is also a licensed Zumba and Tai Chi Instructor.

Arts & Sciences IDT Cohort


AJ Cho
Senior Instructional Designer

AJ earned his B.A. in Piano Performance and his M.Ed. in Instructional Technology from East Stroudsburg University. Before entering higher education, he taught private piano lessons. After grad school, he worked as an instructional technologist and instructional designer at SUNY Cortland and an instructional designer at Becker College in Worcester, MA. He formerly was a competitive gamer and has traveled around the country to play in various competitions. In his spare time, he enjoys listening to music and working on his game room. He lives in Millbury, MA with his wife and two cats.

Photo of Chelsea Barolet

Chelsea Barolet
Instructional Technologist

Chelsea earned her B.A. in English at Goucher College, her M.A.T. at Morgan State University, and her Micro-Certificate in Instructional Design and Technology at Johnson & Wales University. Originally from Baltimore, MD, she spent time in Asheville, NC, and then the greater Boston area but now loves calling Providence home.

Before joining the JWU team, Chelsea was a teacher for nine years; she taught English and AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination). During that time, she explored her passion for supporting historically underrepresented learners and those under-included in higher education and learning. She has a passion for accessibility, equity, and engagement and the intersection of those elements with technology.

Outside of work, Chelsea likes to learn how to make things, take walks with her Partner and her senior Pit, Roxy, practice yoga, garden, explore Rhode Island, and renovate her very old home.

Sara Horstmann

Sara Horstmann
Instructional Technologist

Bio coming soon!


Erin Kalish
Instructional Designer

Erin has worked in higher education since 2001, primarily teaching writing, literature, and humanities courses. She has a B.A. in English and Middle/Secondary Education from St. Norbert College and an M.A. in British and American Literature from Washington University in St. Louis. Erin has extensive experience teaching on-ground and hybrid classes. Her teaching interests include project-based and experiential learning and using low-stakes assignments and specification grading to support student success on high-stakes assignments. In her spare time, Erin enjoys singing and can be found driving a minivan to every extracurricular her kids join. 


Bridget Landry
Instructional Designer

Bridget earned a double B.A. in Global Studies and Spanish and M.A. in International Education. She has taught F2F foreign language classes in the U.S. and abroad, designed and managed blended learning experiences for international student leaders and working adults, and co-designed and taught college-level courses emphasizing civic engagement and career preparation. Her winding career path - with education as one of several throughlines - has shaped a user-centered, interdisciplinary, and collaborative approach to course, project, and program development. Bridget respects the great potential of technological tools to support and facilitate teaching and learning and enjoys learning new strategies to leverage them. She is also especially passionate about the design and facilitation of project-based and experiential learning experiences. In her spare time, you can usually find Bridget reading, cooking, or exploring the outdoors.



Kelly Mackenzie
Instructional Designer

Kelly earned a B.A. in Psychology and English and an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction, with an emphasis on Instructional Design. Before joining the team at JWU in early 2021, she worked in both education nonprofits and higher education in instructional design, content management, and equity & inclusion roles. Over the last several years, Kelly developed a strong passion for addressing diversity, equity, and inclusion in education, and she presents the topic as much as possible at JWU! Kelly resides in Massachusetts with her husband and three cats – Sam, Patrick, and Emmy.


Carrie Oeding, Ph.D.
Instructional Designer

Carrie Oeding has a Ph.D. in American literature and creative writing and an M.F.A. in creative writing. She has taught English and humanities courses in higher education for more than twenty years and has served as a teaching mentor, curriculum developer, and special programs coordinator. She has a passion for learner-centered, inquiry-based, and collaborative pedagogies. She is also the author of two books of poetry and lives with her family in Rhode Island.


Tyler Pelletier
Senior Instructional Technologist

Tyler earned a B.A. in History at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. His professional background is primarily in technology, having worked in the past as a computer technician for about five years. During his time as a student at UMass Dartmouth, he worked as a writing tutor and peer mentor for other students. His combined experience working in mostly technology-oriented jobs with a liberal arts educational background has equipped him with a unique set of problem-solving skills, an eye for detail, and the ability to break down complicated technical concepts for others. He likes to approach tech support like solving a puzzle and thrives in an environment that offers him plenty of chances to exercise his skills, think outside the box and learn new things.

Maria Rose 

Maria Rose
Instructional Technologist

Maria holds a B.A. in European History and French Literature from Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts. She worked as a tour manager in the US, Canada and Europe before entering higher education in 2006.  Prior to joining the IDT team at JWU, she served as the Office of Medical Education’s Instructional Technology Specialist at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. A native of Providence, Maria loves learning and has a passion for service. 

Kenny Wilson


Kenny Wilson
Instructional Technologist

Kenny holds a B.S. in Digital Arts & Sciences from the Computer Information, Sciences, and Engineering Department of the College of Engineering at the University of Florida. He also earned his Master of Fine Arts in Art & Technology from the University of Florida. His career has been entirely academic starting with teaching art history, graphics, and design. He worked as a technology coordinator for an Interactive Media graduate program for a number of years before his first exposure to online education as a Multimedia Developer for the state of Georgia’s online education platform. Most recently, he was an Instructional Designer for Maker Education at a residential liberal arts university in upstate New York. He is excited to be joining Johnson & Wales University as an Online Instructional Technologist and is passionate about incorporating effective and emerging technologies into modern curriculums.

Business and Engineering & Design IDT Cohort

Yahya Bouhafa, Ph.D., Ed.D.
Instructional Designer

Yahya Bouhafa holds an EdD in Educational Leadership from Binghamton University, and a Ph.D. in ICT and Language Instruction from Fes University in Morocco. While completing his EdD, he served as a graduate assistant, teaching courses, conducting research, and designing courses in his department and as part of the university's Center for Learning and Teaching. Yahya has received several notable awards and recognitions, including the Clark and Couper Fellowships, the third prize in the Three Minutes Dissertation Competition, and the Binghamton University Excellence Award. He has extensive experience teaching at the college level, both in the United States and Morocco, on topics such as multicultural education, English for specific purposes, research methods, educational technology, and educational leadership. Yahya has also presented at eight conferences and has published three journal articles and one book chapter. Yahya is striving for more academic and professional achievements as part of JWU.



Kerra Gazerro, Ph.D.
Instructional Designer

Kerra Lynn Gazerro, Ph.D. has a twenty-five-year career in higher education. Kerra earned her doctorate in Italian from the University of Chicago, with a specialization in Italian women’s mysticism. Before joining JWU, she served as a Visiting Assistant Professor of Italian Studies at Wheaton College in Norton, MA.

Kerra has also worked for several scholastic learning companies including Pearson, Duolingo, and LingroLearning. During her most recent project, as a Curriculum Strategist, Kerra designed and revised assessments for a new edition of an Italian textbook.

When she isn’t engaged in academic projects, Kerra is an avid bread baker, a passion she developed while living in Italy. Kerra credits her disciplined nature to her training as a ballerina and competitive dancer and she still enjoys attending artistic performances (now as a spectator rather than a participant). Kerra makes her home in Rhode Island.


Ken Mondschein, Ph.D.
Instructional Technologist

Ken Mondschein is the newest Instructional Technologist on the Johnson & Wales team. He holds an M.Ed. in Learning, Media, and Technology from UMass-Amherst and a Ph.D. in medieval history from Fordham University. Previously, he worked as a lecturer at the UMass Mt. Ida campus. Ken’s special interests are equity and inclusion; distance teaching of physical skills; authentic and collaborative design of courses and assessments; and helping faculty bring their “A” game to their courses. In his spare time, he rides horses and teaches and publishes about the history of fencing.


Karen Morey
Instructional Technologist

Karen started at JWU in March 2020, on the same day everyone moved off campus for the pandemic. Being remote didn’t stop her from falling in love with the amazing team of people here at JWU. Karen has a BA in Political Science from Bates College, an MLIS in Library and Information Science from URI, and additional coursework in computer science from CCRI. Her specialties include accessibility, finding top-quality resources, and the integration of new technologies. When she’s not at a computer, Karen’s usually doing improv theater, chilling with her cats, or entertaining her very needy hamster.


Heather Myers
Senior Instructional Designer

Heather has an M.Ed. in Learning Design & Technology, and an ALM in Anthropology. While at WGBH Boston she began her instructional design career working on a joint project between WGBH and MassOne. From there moved on to become a media project manager at Pearson, where she worked with various universities across the country to develop and implement custom media. Heather has been teaching anthropology courses online and face-to-face since 2013, and has 10 years of experience in instructional design and technology. She is passionate about the power of storytelling in the learning process and creating engaging courses for students and faculty. Heather loves traveling to Disney World, spending time with her cats, and studying the supernatural. 

Nicole Riendeau
Instructional Technologist

Nicole Riendeau is a teacher turned Instructional Technologist. Before joining JWU, she was a teacher in the Providence School District. She also taught in flexible education settings such as virtual teaching with Pearson and blended learning settings. Nicole holds a B.S. in Secondary Education with an English concentration from Bridgewater State University. She currently has plans of earning her M.S. in Instructional Design & Technology. Nicole is passionate about making online learning platforms easily accessible for both faculty and students. Outside of her career, Nicole enjoys cooking and exploring the innovative restaurant scene in Providence. She currently resides in Rhode Island with her husband and cat named Ziti.


Amy Pallotta
Senior Instructional Technologist

Amy has worked as an Instructional Technologist with JWU since 2017. She has extensive experience providing support for online faculty and building and revising online master courses to meet formatting and accessibility guidelines. Prior to her current role, she worked with JWU’s Academic Technology Systems team. Amy earned her B.A. in Media Studies and is currently pursuing an M.S. in Organizational Performance & Workplace Learning. When not working or studying she loves to travel, spend time with her niece, and plan for her next adventure.


Scott Turner
Instructional Designer

Prior to working in education, Scott worked in various industries holding positions such as restaurant manager, music buyer for the largest music company in the U.S., restaurant manager, chef and owner, celebrity bodyguard, as well as a steelworker. In 2000, Scott received his B.A. in Secondary Education with a concentration in the Social Sciences from Rhode Island College, and his M.A. from Brown University in 2010 in Curriculum Design. Before transitioning to higher education, Scott taught middle school and high school for 10 years in the Providence area. For 7 years, he taught academic English to international students through the ELS Language Center at Roger Williams University. In 2018, Scott joined the JWU Online Education Team as an Instructional Designer. Scott currently owns “Personal Protection Security” a bodyguard and event security company. Scott has 3 children, Scott Jr, Holly, and Matthew. He also has one granddaughter Summer. For fun Scott can be seen driving his vintage Kawasaki Indian Drifter motorcycle.

Health & Wellness, Hospitality, and Food Innovation & Technology IDT Cohort


Jillian Gesualdi
Instructional Designer

Jillian is a teacher turned Instructional Designer. Before beginning her career at JWU, she was a public school special education teacher and adjunct professor of American Sign Language & Deaf Studies at the Community College of RI. Jillian holds an M.Ed. from Rhode Island College and is passionate about creating engaging, dynamic, and inclusive learning environments. When she’s not at work designing online & face-to-face courses for the University, she is busy serving as the Executive Director at the nonprofit community theatre organization that she founded in East Providence, RI.


April Hodge
Senior Instructional Designer

April earned a B.A. in Anthropology and an M.Ed. in Elementary Education. Her career has spanned teaching elementary school, middle school science, and English, as well as preparing adults for the GED and HiSet exams. April has also supported students and teachers through their practicum placements, as they worked towards their master's degrees in education. She resides in Massachusetts with her husband, 3 children, and two cats Trot and Tek.


Chris Nathan
Instructional Technologist

Chris began his academic career at the University of Missouri, where he earned his B.A. in Linguistics, in 2015. He has been working in the field of Instructional Technology since 2017. In 2020, Chris moved from Missouri to Rhode Island to join the JWU team. He currently lives in Providence with his two cats.


Brooks Robinson
Senior Instructional Technologist

Brooks has worked in higher education since 2018. Previously, he served as a commissioned officer in the US Army, holding multiple positions responsible for curriculum development and training program management within the military intelligence and space operations communities. At JWU, he strives to cultivate equity, access, and opportunity by leveraging technology through the combined lens of user-centered design and critical pedagogy. He holds a BA in History, MS in Geographic Information Systems, and MS in Human Centered Design & Engineering. 

Viktoriia Zykina
Instructional Technologist

Viktoriia earned her B.A. in German Language and Literature. During her studies, she started teaching German to adults in Ukraine. She became passionate about education and the ways to enhance the learning experience using technology. In 2022, she graduated from New York University with a Master’s degree in Digital Media Design for Learning and the same year moved to Providence, RI to start her new position as Instructional Technologist at JWU. When not at work, Viktoriia enjoys baking, doing yoga, learning new languages (she speaks 5 so far), and spending time with her husband and cat Silvia.

Multimedia Production


Peter Eastwood
Creative Director & Manager of Multimedia Production

Pete has been a multimedia producer for over 20 years, specializing in all aspects of video and audio production, animation, and content creation for television, movies, print, and online media, working for Hasbro, APC, Cardi’s Furniture, Boston University, Rhode Island College, New England Tech, and the US Navy. Pete has also taught multimedia courses for 8 years, so he understands how challenging it can be to explain difficult concepts in a way that students can easily comprehend. He enjoys collaborating on solutions to make each student’s learning more engaging and immersive.



Gwendolynn Jones
Multimedia Developer

Gwendolynn specializes in multimedia content development such as animation, video production, audio engineering, graphic design, interactive media, and more. She has developed multimedia content over the last 6 years and worked in higher education over the last 3 1/2 years. She teaches as an Adjunct Professor in TV production as well as Photoshop and design fundamentals.



Casey Quinn
Multimedia Developer

Casey spent 10 years working in the broadcast television industry as an editor, producer, and director at various news outlets in the Boston market.  Since transitioning to Higher Education in 2008, she has worked as an Instructional Technologist at Clark University in Worcester, MA, and at Johnson & Wales before transitioning to a Multimedia Developer position.  Casey’s areas of expertise include content creation, video editing, and graphic design. She holds a B.A. in Communications from Quinnipiac University and an M.A. in Visual Arts from Emerson College.



Chris Sheppard
Multimedia Developer

Chris specializes in start-to-finish multimedia content development - video production, presentations, interactive media, virtual lectures, graphic design, marketing materials, and other creative services. Chris earned his B.A. in Journalism from URI in 2011. His professional experience includes time spent as an on-air reporter for a CBS affiliate, as well as a video production department head at a Rhode Island-based advertising agency. Chris has been developing multimedia content for over 10 years and enjoys working with great colleagues to deliver robust media support. Chris lives in Smithfield, R.I., and loves the Ocean State.

Gary Thomason
Multimedia Developer

Gary earned a B.S. in Communications – Corporate Video and an M.A. in Communications -Digital and Multimedia. His career includes twenty years in broadcast television and corporate multimedia production. He joined JWU in 2018 as an adjunct instructor in the Design Department, teaching motion graphics and video courses. Later, he joined the College of Online Education multimedia team full-time in 2020.

Instructional Design & Technology