OLC Operations & Faculty Support Team: Karen Wakeland

We are into the summer term and caught up with Karen Wakeland, the textbook representative for the Online Learning Center. Learn a little more about her and her role:

Please tell us about yourself and your background. I was born and raised in the Quad-Cities, on the Iowa side. I graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a Bachelor of Arts in Photography. I graduated from Webster with my Master of Arts in Management and Leadership in May.

What do you do in your free time? I have two boys, 8 years old and 10 months old, plus my husband and two cats – so there is not much free time in our household! My husband and I are very involved with the Cub Scouts – we are den leaders and pack committee members. When I do have free time, I like to hang out with my boys – they are so much fun!

How long have you been with Webster? 3 years in August

How do you help Webster University Online students and faculty? I help students by answering questions they may have about textbooks. I also keep track of the eReserves that are in the Online Courses. I do my best to make sure that everything is correct and updated. I help faculty by making sure they have desk copies of the textbooks they are using. When new editions are published, I try to ensure that every faculty member who teaches the course online has the updated edition.

What are some of our faculty or students’ frequently asked questions that you think would be worth sharing. Something I have heard from students is “how do I know what textbook is required for my course?” All of the required and optional textbooks are listed on our online bookstore’s website (www.bkstr.com/websteronlinestore/home). Before that information gets posted, though, I email instructors, course leads and department representatives the book information that I have on file and confirm that the information I have is still correct. Once I have that confirmation, I get the book and course information to the bookstore so that they can get it posted and ordered from the publishers so that students are able to order and purchase.

Do you have any advice for students? Travel! Webster offers many opportunities to travel/study abroad and it is one thing I wish I would have been able to do while pursuing my masters.

What’s your favorite part of Webster University. I love the people I work with – not only in the OLC but throughout the entire University.