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Meet OPWL Advisory Board Volunteer – Brian Thompson

An Industry Advisory Board is a collection of volunteers that are the ‘eyes of the industry’ as well as the ‘voice of the industry professionals’ to help academic programs identify the knowledge and skills needed to provide their organization with a competitive learning and performance edge.

OPWL’s Industry Advisory Board (IAB) is an impressive group of learning and development professionals that serves as the program’s sounding board, providing ‘frontline’ insights on workplace needs, and guidance and feedback the tools and skills desired in the 21st century workplace.

These volunteers are essential for the program, the professionals working in the field and for the development of the field.

OPWL’s IAB President Brian Thompson

Brian Thompson
Brian Thompson

In 2001, Brian Thompson had been working in Workforce Development for Micron Technology for a couple of years and was looking for a graduate program to assist him with the launching of a leadership development program at Micron. That summer he began his graduate study in the Instructional and Performance Technology program and graduated with the MS in May 2004.

Since graduating in 2004, Thompson has worked in Global Workforce Development for Micron, Curriculum Development for Sears, in Learning & Development for Hewlett-Packard, in Learning Solutions and Organizational Development for St. Luke’s Health System, as Director of Organizational Development for Ascension, and in 2022 is currently doing his dream job as Assistant Director/Clinical Faculty for the Leadership Certificate program offered through the School of Public Service at Boise State University.

OPWL asked Brian – As an individual that has been in a number of learning and development leadership roles, there is a tremendous demand on your time. What motivates you to volunteer time to lead OPWL’s industry advisory board?

Brian Thompson – What motivates me to volunteer time to lead OPWL’s industry advisory board is really two-fold.

The OPWL program consistently delivers talent that is desperately needed in industry today by equipping graduates with a broad range of skills that impact organizational effectiveness in ways that surprise and delight leaders. I have been privileged to do and trusted with the process to change and improve the way work is done.

The OPWL program provided me with a mindset and skill-set that opened doors for me personally and professionally far above what I could have hoped for. I’ve been fortunate to work in a wide variety of industries, geographies, and cultures, and experience opportunities I couldn’t have imagined before completing my degree, and I am eager to try to pay the program back by paying it forward.

About the OPWL Program

The Organizational Performance and Workplace Learning (OPWL) program helps prepare students for careers in the areas of instructional design, training and development, e-learning, workplace performance improvement, organizational development, program evaluation and performance consulting.

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