Emily Lardner is the interim vice president for academic affairs at Highline Community College, the most diverse college in Washington State. In this role, she focuses on supporting faculty and staff in their efforts to close equity gaps and increase student achievement.
For 20 years, Lardner served as the director of the Washington Center for Improving Undergraduate Education, which is based at Evergreen State College. At the Washington Center, Lardner consulted widely and worked with more than 150 two- and four-year campuses to implement strategies to improve student success and reduce equity gaps. She collaborated with leaders in higher education to design and facilitate the National Summer Institute on Learning Communities and Using Evidence for Improvement: Teaching and Learning National Institute. She also served as founding coeditor of the open-access, peer-reviewed journal Learning Communities Research and Practice.
Lardner began her career as a writing instructor. After spending hundreds of hours with students in one-on-one appointments, she learned the value of using students’ descriptions of their learning experiences as a guide for education reform efforts. She and her colleagues pioneered a shift from a traditional writing assessment to portfolio-based assessments designed to support progressive curriculum reforms. Lardner holds an MA and a PhD from the University of Michigan and a BA from Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois.