VINCENNES, Ind. – When Vincennes University shifted to remote
learning for the remainder of the spring semester, lab instructor
Cassidy Strange immediately leaped into action.
Just like a superhero.
With instruction moving online, she needed to come up with a way of
delivering technology to her students to allow for hands-on learning.
The Product Design and Production Processes program coordinator and
instructor wasted little time in exploring unique solutions to connect
students with necessary and complex computer-aided design software.
Cassidy Strange, VU Instructor
“Computer-aided design (CAD) is one of the key skills that the
graduates of the Project Design program learn,” Strange said. “It’s so
fundamental to what they’re going to do for their jobs.”
VU faculty and staff have worked diligently to come up with
innovative methods to teach previously in-person labs and classes.
“With the shift to remote learning, making sure all the students
continued to have access to those computers was essential for me to be
able to provide the same quality instruction that I could face to
face,” Strange said. “I did not want to have to compromise the quality
of the instruction that I could offer.”
That is why she spent many hours devising a solution. She was
inspired by one student in particular. Until recently,
the student didn't own a computer.
“I was trying to make sure whatever remote access system I put in
place works across essentially any internet device that the student
already has,” Strange said.
Access to CAD software is available to VU students in a designated
on-campus computer laboratory, but the lab is off-limits since all
learning has moved online.
Half of Strange’s students, who are learning to design products or
special tooling required to manufacture new products, lacked the
essential computer equipment at home to complete their coursework
until she developed a cost-saving solution. The only thing needed is
Her students now have remote access to the computers and CAD software
in the CAD lab using a free Google account and the free Chrome Remote
Desktop app. Students sign into a Google account and they have full
control over the computer and software in the CAD lab.
Joshua Dillow, VU Student
“I think Professor Strange has done the best of her ability to make
sure us students are well equipped to finish out this year strong and
I believe the software has played a big role in that,” said VU Product
Design and Production Processes major Joshua Dillow.
Strange is a dedicated and passionate instructor, who is extremely
committed to students.
Ty Freed, Dean of College of Technology
“It can be difficult for students to transition to online instruction
when they are used to traditional classes and Cassidy has made a
tremendous effort to keep all of her students engaged and moving
toward their goals,” VU College of Technology Dean Ty Freed said. “She
has found an avenue for remote login for her students and has also
helped other instructors do the same. This has been a huge help for
students that do not have the proper computer equipment at home to
operate the complex software needed for assignment completion.”
Dillow has adapted to the change to a virtual format and is
completing the rigorous coursework.
“Remote access was a great alternative and so far, I have been able
to keep up with the workload for the class,” he said.
Strange’s efforts have also eased concerns students may have had
regarding the sudden change to learning at home.
“The opportunity to essentially work from the same computer the
student was accustomed to prior to leaving campus, has been a great
comfort for most students and has really helped lower the stress
levels associated with the transition to online learning,” Freed said.
“Cassidy cares about her students and is willing to think outside the
box to help students in any way she can during this unusual