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The History of NCITE

The concept for NCITE™ arose out of conversations among Senator Bob Kerrey, Rod Bates, General Manager of Nebraska Educational Telecommunications, and Art Zygielbaum, then with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena , CA , in 1994. The concept evolved through meetings with many business, educational, and governmental leaders in Nebraska . In particular, a 1996 discussion with University of Nebraska–Lincoln 's President L. Dennis Smith indicated that he had been pursuing a similar concept. President Smith took NCITE™ under his wing, becoming a key supporter and architect. Subsequent discussions among a wide variety of administrators and faculty at the University, the Nebraska Department of Education, business leaders, teachers, and others refined the concept and give it an operational definition. President Smith was instrumental in exploring alternative sources of funding and actively seeking a Congressional appropriation for the Center. This effort ultimately succeeded when Congress specifically recommended a grant for this project, and on December 28, 2000, the US Department of Education notified the University of the grant to implement NCITE™.

On July 1, 2001, NCITE™ became a reality. Roger Bruning, Co-Director, Center for Instructional Innovation, and Velma Warren Hodder Professor of Educational Psychology at UNL was appointed NCITE™ Co-Director for Education. Art Zygielbaum, Director of Research and Development at Nebraska Educational Telecommunications and Associate Professor (Courtesy) of Computer Science and Engineering was appointed Co-Director for Technology. Richard Sincovec, Chair of the UNL Computer Science and Engineering Department serves as Associate Director

A Governance Board was subsequently established under the leadership of Rod Bates and Jim O'Hanlon, Dean of the Teachers College at UNL. Board members are Kim Robak, University of Nebraska Corporation Secretary and Vice President for External Affairs, and Prem Paul, UNL Vice Chancellor for Research.

A Planning Team consisting of experts from UNL, University of Nebraska–Omaha (UNO), University of Nebraska–Kearney (UNK), Nebraska Department of Education, and the Applied Information Management (AIM) Institute created NCITE™'s initial development strategy.

In July 2005, NCITE™ underwent a major change. It has been moved within the Department of Computer Science and Engineering and has been re-organized. Art Zygielbaum stepped down from the directorship of NCITE™. Leen-Kiat Soh has been appointed Director of the center.