MIT Open Learning to co-host the 2020 LearnLaunch Across Boundaries Conference | MIT J-WEL

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MIT Open Learning to co-host the 2020 LearnLaunch Across Boundaries Conference

Education innovators from across the country and around the world will gather in Boston from January 30-31 for the 2020 LearnLaunch Across Boundaries Conference, co-hosted by MIT Open Learning and sponsored by ASA.

LearnLaunch recently announced the keynote speaker lineup for its 8th annual conference, which will feature new President and Executive Director Jane Swift. The former Massachusetts Governor joined the organization on July 1. Swift is a widely acknowledged education policy and innovation leader with decades of experience in government and the private sector. She serves on a number of boards, including Academic Programs International, a privately held study abroad company. She will be hosting a Future of Work showcase together with the University of Massachusetts President Marty Meehan and Rosalin Acosta, Massachusetts Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development, on day two of the conference.

At Across Boundaries, thought leaders will discuss their biggest opportunities and frame their largest challenges as they explore how the structure of education and learning may change over the next generation and the direct impact it will have on the workforce. Specifically, they will examine issues such as Artificial Intelligence, workforce development, technology, gaming and financial assistance during the conference, which is focused on “Creating the Future of Learning.”

“Setting a child up for lifelong success takes a village and it starts with early education and continues throughout their life,” said Swift. “At Across Boundaries, we are bringing together thought leaders from across the education and employment sectors to strategize about how the education we are providing today will shape the employees and leaders of tomorrow, and how to integrate innovation as a tool to improve teaching and lifelong learning.”

On Thursday, January 30, a keynote panel comprised of Michael Hansen, CEO of Cengage, Frank Britt CEO of Penn Foster and Jamie Candee CEO of Edmentum, will explore the influence of technology on learning and the future workforce. The conversation will be moderated by John J-H Kim of Harvard Business School.

Other highlights of day one include keynote speeches by Dr. Parminder K. Jassal of the Institute for the Future and Scott Pulsipher of Western Governors University. Jassal will bring the audience through an interactive exercise in the year 2030 as they explore how the intersection of work and learning will impact education innovation.

On Friday, January 31, Kaya Henderson of Teach for All will discuss access to education and the lessons we are learning from Washington, D.C. Tom Vander Ark, CEO of Getting Smart, and a leading strategist in U.S. education will lead the final keynote with Jean Eddy of American Student Assistance, Ed Hidalgo, Chief Innovation and Engagement Officer of Cajon Valley Unified School District, and David Bluestein of Boston College.

MIT Open Learning speakers at the conference include:

  • Dr. YJ Kim, Executive Director of MIT Playful Journey Lab - Gaming and simulations as vehicles for learning and assessment
  • Professor Eric Klopfer, J-WEL pK-12 Faculty Advisor - Deeper learning in action: Computational thinking in the classroom
  • Dr. Vijay Kumar, J-WEL Executive Director - Adaptive AI in education; The future of the university: Stories of digital transformation in higher education
  • MIT Vice President for Open Learning Professor Sanjay Sarma - The future of work: Trends in workforce edtech


Steve Carson, Associate Director of J-WEL, commented: “For the past two years, MIT Open Learning has been pleased to co-host Across Boundaries, providing a forum for diverse stakeholders to explore and share innovative solutions for impacting learning, developing the tools and technologies that will serve the students and workforce of the future.” 

Across Boundaries, the premiere education innovation conference in New England, is expected to draw over 1,500 educators, strategic industry companies, entrepreneurs, students and investors who are focused on cutting-edge innovations that are transforming learning, and the way educational institutions do business.

For more information and to register for the 2020 LearnLaunch Across Boundaries Conference, please visit