Meet the Open Texas Committee Members: Carrie Gits (Program)
Name: Carrie Gits
Preferred pronouns: she/her
Where do you work?
Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board
What do you do there?
Director, Digital Learning
Where did you go to school?
Undergraduate: Augustana College, Rock Island, IL; Graduate School: MLIS and MA in Foreign Language and Lit (Spanish) University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; 2020 ACC graduate earning a Level I Certificate in American Sign Language Studies.
Where is your hometown?
What might someone be surprised to know about you?
Before starting graduate school I completed a year of national service by volunteering full time for a year in Chicago at a neighborhood non-profit youth center (Casa Juan Diego). The center provided educational, recreational, and cultural programs to youth ages 6-18.
How did you get involved with the Open Texas Conference?
I presented at Open Texas in 2021. In 2019 I presented at the statewide event before the creation of Open Texas - organized by DigiTex and THECB called Open Education Texas Convening. Over the last several years, I’ve watched the momentum and contributions to the open community grow in Texas with excitement. So when the call for the opportunity to participate on committees for Open Texas went out on a variety of listservs, I said absolutely and signed up!
What was your first impression of Open Texas?
The conference last year was terrific! It was great to see the momentum, enthusiasm, and engagement across the state. Open Texas is an opportunity for open advocates and practitioners to come together regardless of institutional memberships, and experience in open education (novice or expert). I am excited to participate as a committee member, connect with others, and continue to learn from everyone.
What would you tell someone who is thinking about presenting or attending Open Texas?
Do it! The presentation topics and the formats we are seeking create space for a variety of presentations related to OER and open education. I am especially looking forward to the proposals and contributions to the Show and Fail presentations. These open, honest, realistic, practical stories and experiences contribute to the growth and sustainability of OER at our institutions. Those of us doing the work recognize how much time, energy, and emotional labor goes into OER programs, open practices, and OER content creation. It is essential to acknowledge that not everything goes as planned, and that is ok. It is all part of the process, and this helps our community evolve. We need to share our success as well as our obstacles and challenges. The conference has something for everyone!