Jorge Klor de Alva, President
Jorge Klor de Alva, J.D., Ph.D., is President, Nexus Research and Policy Center. He was formerly President of the University of Phoenix, board member of Apollo Group, Inc., and Chairman and CEO of Apollo International, Inc., an independent global education company that served over 170,000 K-12 and higher education students, with operations in Europe, India and Latin America. Prior to joining the Apollo Group, he was the Class of 1940 Professor at the University of California-Berkeley and before that he was a professor at Princeton University.
He has over 40 years of experience working in higher education, teacher preparation, and consulting for school districts, teachers’ groups, the Educational Testing Service, the GRE, and the College Board. He served on the Advisory Council of the Smithsonian Institute and was appointed to the Blue Ribbon Panel responsible for updating the Smithsonian’s Museum of American History. He also served as a board member of the American Association of Higher Education and on the Advisory Council on Education and Human Resources of the National Science Foundation.
His research interests span from education policy, curriculum reform, and social and education trends to contemporary and early modern race and ethnic relations. He has published over 85 scholarly articles, is co-author of 9 social studies textbooks, and has authored, co-authored or edited another 15 books on related subjects. His most recent books include The Americans and The Americans: Reconstruction to the 21st Century (both by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt: 2012 [latest editions]).
He has received a number of grants for his research, including from the Spanish and Mexican governments, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the National Science Foundation. Among his awards he was a Fulbright Scholar, John Simon Guggenheim Fellow, Harry Frank Guggenheim grantee, and Getty Scholar at the Getty Center for the History of Art and the Humanities. He has a B.A. and a law degree from the University of California-Berkeley, and a Ph.D. from University of California-Santa Cruz.
Kurt Slobodzian, VP Research
Kurt Slobodzian, Ed.D., MLS, is the Vice President of Research at Nexus. He joined Nexus in early 2010. Previously he served for five years as President and CEO of One Touch Systems, a San Jose based distance learning technology company. Prior to One Touch he held multiple positions with the University of Phoenix and the Apollo Group. In 1995 Kurt joined the university as its first University Librarian and was responsible for launching the first 100% virtual academic library later that year. Kurt also played a lead role in the adoption of digital textbooks at the University. Subsequent assignments at Apollo Group saw Mr. Slobodzian responsible for Institutional Research and developing international business opportunities in China and India.
Dr. Slobodzian’s current research interests include an examination of risk and success factors affecting military students receiving either VA or DOD financial assistance.
Norma Ming, Senior Research Scientist
Dr. Norma Ming is a Senior Research Scientist and Director of the Institute of Teaching and Learning at Nexus. Her teaching and professional development experience spans more than 15 years, including high-school math and science; baccalaureate- through doctoral-level cognitive psychology and educational research; and educational technology, statistics, and assessment principles for preservice and inservice teachers, administrators, and faculty developers. She has developed and evaluated assessments and curricular materials for multiple educational programs and reform initiatives, including some sponsored by the National Science Foundation and Educational Testing Service. Prior to joining Nexus, Dr. Ming was a lecturer in Education in Math, Science, and Technology at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Education, where she is now a visiting scholar. She earned an A.B. with honors in chemistry at Harvard University and a Ph.D. in cognitive psychology in the Program for Interdisciplinary Educational Research at Carnegie Mellon University.
Dr. Ming’s current research interests encompass instructional design in math and science education, how people learn from comparisons, and professional development of teachers and faculty. She is particularly interested in merging research with cutting-edge technology to create innovative, assessment-driven teaching and learning environments that combine machine intelligence with collaborative human intelligence to advance both insights and outcomes.
Jennie Myers, Research Assistant
Jennie Myers, MBA, is the Research Assistant at Nexus Research and Policy Center, joining in 2011. Prior to Nexus she served for several years as a Project Manager at University of Phoenix, responsible for fundraising, sponsorships and employee engagement. While in this position she raised several thousand dollars for multiple local and national charities. Jenn served in multiple positions at University of Phoenix and Apollo Group prior to Project Manager. She earned her BSB/M and MBA with a specialization in Marketing at University of Phoenix. There she also completed her Human Resource Management and Project Management certificates.