Success Stories

Barbara Millard from Johnson County Community College uses HP LIFE e-Learning

A constant challenge for Barbara Millard, Associate Professor, Marketing, Johnson County Community College, is finding new and engaging ways to communicate concepts to students.

Until recently, Barbara was the Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship at the college. With an average age of 26, Barbara’s class was indeed the “digital generation” - comprised primarily of students who had grown up, and were extremely comfortable, with technology.

“This generation is not interested in reading and is bored by worksheets,” says Barbara. “I needed something to liven up my business plan class and engage students in the materials in a way that speaks to this generation - which ideally means technology-based.”

Students enjoy interactive HP LIFE e-Learning courses

HP LIFE e-Learning has helped Barbara to tackle these and other challenges. An innovative, cloud-based, online training program, HP LIFE e-Learning is designed for students, entrepreneurs, and small-business owners to develop their IT and business skills.

The program’s 25 modules cover core business categories such as finance, marketing, operations and communications, plus special topics such as social entrepreneurship, energy efficiency and effective leadership.

HP LIFE e-Learning is part of HP Living Progress, HP’s framework for thinking about how it does business. It’s how HP is working to create a better future for everyone through its actions and innovations.

“Each module features a realistic scenario demonstrating a common business challenge - such as how to set a fair price for your product,” says Barbara. ‘My students love that the courses are interactive and full of practical exercises. They can go through them at their own pace - spending more or less time on each module as required.

“HP LIFE e-Learning was just what I was looking for to add new life to my teaching,” she says. “The modules speak to the students in a way that text books can’t. In fact, many enjoy the modules so much they work ahead.

“I also like the program’s flexibility. In addition to providing the core, basic concepts it also includes next steps and tools that students can use. This allows me to expand on a subject when I feel a class is ready to go a little further."

HP LIFE e-Learning is transforming the way Barbara teaches

It isn’t just the way HP LIFE e-Learning increases students’ enjoyment and the subsequent retention of information that impresses Barbara. “I’ve seen its impact firsthand,” she says. “One student of mine was a highly intelligent gentleman in his fifties who had been laid off from his job. Looking to start his own business, he took my course and went on to start his own company in the medical software space. He gave a lot of the credit for his success to HP LIFE e-Learning, saying that it provided the hands-on learning experience that brought all aspects of a topic together for that ’Aha!’ moment. We stay in touch - he actually came back and showed me his first check.”

The benefits aren’t just felt on the student side. “HP LIFE e-Learning is actually transforming the way I teach,” she says. “I can use the modules as basic course content, or as a refresher. Each module stands alone and can be mixed and matched according to individual class needs.

With HP LIFE e-Learning students can learn individually

“I often break my students up into small groups to cover a concept - but that can often mean that some students ride on the coattails of the others. With HP LIFE e-Learning, every student does the modules individually, but can discuss them in their group afterwards.

“HP LIFE e-Learning is also perfect to leave with a substitute teacher if I have to be away. They can go over a module as a class and I can leave confident that my students are learning something valuable.”

Barbara’s enthusiasm and belief in HP LIFE e-Learning is helping to spread the word about its ability to create powerful learning experiences for students.