Vice President for Information Technology Scott Midkiff has appointed Claire Krendl Gilbert as the executive director of IT Experience and Engagement, a new unit within the Division of Information Technology.

The unit serves as the front door for users across the university and works across the division to continuously review and improve the user experience.

As the executive director, Gilbert will evolve and ensure a high-quality user experience for faculty, staff, students, and partners. She will provide leadership in three primary areas: user engagement through the IT information center and the 4Help service desk; experience design and improvement; and communications and outreach. Under Gilbert’s direction, these efforts will enhance the IT experience for all users at Virginia Tech.

“Since joining Virginia Tech, Dr. Gilbert has proven herself as a strong leader, consensus builder, and organizer,” said Midkiff.  He added that, “These talents and her focus on user experience and continuous improvement make her the ideal candidate to lead this new unit.”

Previously Gilbert served as the director for strategy and analysis, where she played a pivotal role in a number of new initiatives and projects within the division. In the three years since she came to Virginia Tech, Gilbert has made a significant impact on the Division of Information Technology, as well as the university. She had a key role in the selection and roll-out of Canvas, Virginia Tech’s new learning management system. Gilbert also developed and implemented the division’s first operational plan.

“I am honored to lead this new unit, which brings together the functions of user engagement, user experience design and improvement, and communications and outreach to focus on the way our community engages with and experiences IT at Virginia Tech,” said Gilbert. 

“This is an outstanding team of IT professionals who have decades of institutional knowledge and a true passion for service and support, and I am thrilled to co-create this new unit with them.”

Prior to earning her Ph.D in higher education from The Pennsylvania State University, Gilbert earned her bachelor’s degree in communication studies and political science from Northwestern University. 

Written by Leah Johnson, a master's degree student in communication in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences.

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