Melissa Loble: Fostering a love for learning
Learning is cool. That is the message Melissa Loble, vice president of platform and partnerships at Instructure, is charged with conveying to thousands of users of the company’s software. Instructure is a technology company that builds educational software. Their tagline is simple: they make software that makes people smarter.
“We build software that provides solutions across a wide spectrum of industries and we help active learners gain the skills they need to succeed in the marketplace,” says Loble.
Instructure has three software programs. Its Canvas software is tailored to K-12 and higher education and helps teachers put courses online. The Bridge software is tailored for corporate learning and employee training. Arc, its most recent addition, enables users to link video into learning environments and collaborate around those videos.
Technology has become a driver for innovation in education, says Loble. “Technology has given us an opportunity to interact with students in a more engaging way and allows for connections to learning opportunities that might otherwise be unavailable.”
With remote learning being more commonplace, technology is more important than ever. Students can learn from instructors remotely and engage with them in real time. Technology can extend the reach of education, while driving change and transformation, she notes. Technology and education go hand in hand to inspire a love for learning.
“It helps prepare students for the workforce, because so much of what we do every day is technology rich,” she says.
Technology helps teachers reimagine what their classrooms look like and gives them the chance to rethink their curriculum. “Technology allows for a very different learning environment and allows teachers to become creative curators of that information and facilitators of active learning opportunities,” Loble says.
Loble is very impressed with the encouragement she sees of women in leadership roles in the technology arena. She also cites efforts of local organizations, like Women Tech Council, that really support and promote women in the industry. “There are great organizations in Utah to belong to that provide excellent networking and training opportunities for women to be better at what they’re doing in their companies,” she says.
Among the highpoints of her career so far is being named a finalist for the Women Tech Council award in 2016. It was a defining moment for her to highlight education in the technology industry. “Oftentimes, it’s thought of more as education than technology. We’re very technology oriented and we’re very much about driving innovation in technology,” says Loble.
Another highlight she is proud of is her recent efforts to launch an EdTech Women, Salt Lake City chapter. The organization focuses on women’s leadership in education technology and has more than 50 members. “It is my baby and that’s exciting for me to see the organization grow and develop as well,” says Loble.
Loble credits her father for her love of technology. “He always brought technology home to us and we always had the latest and greatest device. I was always absorbed with technology and the possibilities it can play,” she says.