Day 1
Keynote Speakers
Keynote Address 1

Mr Ng Cher Pong
Chief Executive, Workforce Development Agency, Singapore

Mr Ng Cher Pong, the Chief Executive of Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA), is responsible for spearheading WDA’s mission to enhance the employability and competitiveness of Singapore’s Workforce.Prior to joining WDA, Mr Ng served in the Ministry of Education as Deputy Secretary (Services) and (Policy). He had also previously worked in numerous Ministries, including the Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Manpower.Mr Ng is currently serving as Director of the Singapore Technologies Kinetics Ltd, Learning Gateway Ltd and Lifelong Learning Institute. He is member of the Info-communications Development Authority of Singapore Board, Singapore Workforce Development Agency Board, Lifelong Learning Endowment Fund Advisory Council, Employment and Employability Institute, Northlight School Board of Governors, SIM University Board of Trustees, Pathlight School Management Committee, Institute of Service Board of Advisors, Singapore Computer Society Honorary Advisory Council, Appeal Board of Commission for Foreign Manpower and Public Service Commission’s Disciplinary Panel of Persons. He is also an Adjunct Lecturer of the Civil Service College.

Keynote Address 2

Mr Bernie Trilling
Mr Bernie Trilling
Founder and CEO of 21st Century Learning Advisors, and Co-author of 21st Century Skills: Learning for Life in Our Times

Bernie Trilling is Founder and CEO of 21st Century Learning Advisors, and the former global director of the Oracle Education Foundation, where he directed the development of education strategies, partnerships, and services for the Foundation and its ThinkQuest programs. He has served as Board Member of the Partnership for 21st Century Skills (P21), co-chaired the committee that developed the highly regarded “rainbow” learning framework, and is currently a P21 Senior Fellow.Bernie has developed pioneering educational programs and services and is an active member of a variety of organizations dedicated to bringing 21st century deeper learning methods to students and teachers across the globe.Prior to joining the Oracle Education Foundation, Bernie was Director of the Technology In Education group at WestEd, a U.S. national educational laboratory, where he led a team of educational experts in integrating technology into both the instructional and administrative realms of education. He has also served in a variety of roles in both education and industry, including Executive Producer for Instruction at Hewlett-Packard Company, where he helped lead a state-of-the-art global interactive distance learning network.Bernie co-authored the widely acclaimed book, 21st Century Skills: Learning for Life in Our Times, published by Wiley, and has written chapters for books such as the Deeper Learning: Beyond 21st Century Skills collection. He has also written dozens of articles for educational journals and magazines and is a featured speaker and workshop leader at numerous educational gatherings.Bernie has been researching the common principles and practices of over 500 schools that are models for 21st century learning as part of the Hewlett Foundation’s Deeper Learning initiative. As a consultant to The Conference Board he has worked on redefining the future of work and what students need to be work ready. He has also been a consultant to the Raikes Foundation in their work on student agency and the mindsets and learning strategies that lead to student success.Bernie is a lifelong, self-propelled learner. He has devoted much of his career to furthering the kinds of learning experiences he has found most engaging, collaborative, relevant, and powerful, working to make these experiences available to learners of all ages.

Plenary Speakers
Speaker 1

Ursula Renold-2013
Dr Ursula Renold
Head of Division, Comparative Education System Research, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich and Chairman of the Board, University of Applied Sciences and Arts, North-western Switzerland

Ursula Renold is heading a research center for comparative education systems at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich. In addition, she is Chairman of the University Board of the University of Applied Sciences and Arts, Northwestern Switzerland. She was a Visiting Fellow at Harvard Graduate School of Education. Prior to this, Renold was Director General of the Federal Office for Professional Education and Technology (OPET) until June 2012. In this position she has headed Switzerland‘s competence centre for professional education, universities of applied sciences, and innovation since 2005. Before becoming Director General, she was head of OPET’s Vocational and Professional Education and Training (VPET) Division and Director of the Swiss Federal Institute of Vocational Education and Training. Renold has launched numerous key initiatives which have great impact on VPET system in Switzerland. She holds an honorary Professorship in Professional Education at the University of Applied Labor Studies in Mannheim (Germany).

Speakers 2

Mick - March 2015
Dr Mick Starcevich
President, Kirkwood Community College, USA

Dr. Mick Starcevich assumed the Kirkwood Community College presidency on January 1, 2005. Previously, he served as Executive Vice President at the college. Mick received B.A. and M.A. degrees from The University of Northern Iowa. He earned an Ed.D. degree from Drake University.Mick has taught mathematics, served as Assistant Principal, Principal and Superintendent in Iowa schools for over thirty years. Prior to coming to Kirkwood on July 1, 2003 as Executive Vice President, he served as Superintendent at College Community School District in Cedar Rapids, IA for eleven years. He also served as an adjunct professor for Drake University for twenty years. He currently serves on a variety of community, state and national boards including

  • Junior Achievement Executive Board
  • US Bank Board
  • Horizon’s Family Services Executive Board
  • The Arc of Eastern Iowa Endowment Committee
  • Iowa Community College Presidents
  • Community College Humanities Association (board member)
  • League for Innovation in the Community College (board member)

Mick and his wife, Linda, have been married for 46 years and have one child and one grandchild.

Speakers 3

Dr Yang Jin
Director General, Central Institute for Vocational & Technical Education, Ministry of Education, P.R. China

Dr Yang Jin is currently Director-General of the Central Institute for Vocational and Technical Education (CIVTE) of the Ministry of Education (MOE) of China – a national agency which coordinates TVET research and teaching and learning support in China. He is Vice President of both the Chinese Society of Technical and Vocational Education and the Chinese Society of Adult Education. From 2008 to 2014, he obtained international experiences by serving as a senior programme specialist at the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL) and facilitated the development of an international network of learning cities/regions, and managed UIL’s programme on lifelong learning policies and strategies. Before joining UIL, Dr Yang was Deputy Director-General of Department of Basic Education, MOE of China. He also worked as Chief of the Division of Teaching and Learning Support, Department of Vocational and Adult Education, MOE of China.