Dr. Jessica Riddell assumed the role as the Executive Director of the Maple League of Universities on July 1, 2018.
The Executive Director is responsible for steering the various initiatives amongst Maple League schools related to teaching, research, educational leadership, and student recruitment with a particular focus on enhancing the academic reputation of the four universities.
Dr. Riddell works closely with the four university presidents to set Maple League strategy and objectives, and facilitates a number of committees and working groups to implement the Maple League Five-Year Strategic Plan.
She oversees the process of major communications, identifies external funding opportunities, allocates budgets to operating committees, supports logistics and planning for Maple League events, supports research collaborations amongst faculty and administrative leaders, and leads the Maple League Teaching and Learning Centre to support excellence in undergraduate teaching across the four universities.
When appropriate, Dr. Riddell engages in public-facing activities and projects (e.g. OpEds, public scholarship, keynote speaking events, etc.) in order to advocate for more equitable funding for primarily undergraduate universities.
Dr. Jessica Riddell is the inaugural Stephen A. Jarislowsky Chair of Undergraduate Teaching Excellence at Bishop’s University. In this capacity, she explores innovative teaching and learning practices, creates mentorship opportunities for students and faculty, mobilizes knowledge around learning in higher education (with a particular focus on the humanities), enhances professional development initiatives for her colleagues, and participates in a wide range of consultations at the national and international levels.
Dr. Riddell sits on a number of national and international boards, including as the VP Canada on the Board of ISSoTL (International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning) and is an elected Board member for the 3M National Executive Council.
Dr. Riddell is the faculty columnist of University Affairs and her articles appear in a series called “Adventures in Academe.” She is also an Associate Professor and the Chair of the Teaching and Learning Centre at Bishop’s University. Her research into higher education is broad, and she has published in her discipline (Early Modern Dramatic and Non-Dramatic Literature) as well as on pedagogy and higher education more broadly. She is currently writing a book with two colleagues on critical empathy and Shakespeare in the 21st century classroom.
Dr. Riddell was awarded the William and Nancy Turner Teaching Award at Bishop’s in 2013, and the 3M National Teaching Fellowship in 2015.
Watch Dr. Riddell talk about the importance of teaching excellence: