Meet our team
Beth Cougler Blom | Senior Learning Designer and Facilitator
Beth has more than 25 years of experience in the field of education, having worked in post-secondary environments, municipal government and community organizations, and now as an entrepreneur. She has been a learning designer since 2005, began Beth Cougler Blom Facilitation in 2011 and has worked with clients across all sectors ever since. Beth has enjoyed a strong relationship with Royal Roads University over the years, as a former member of their learning design team, an Associate Faculty member and a facilitator of several courses in their Advanced Facilitation Certificate.
Beth has been deeply involved in the Facilitating Learning Online (FLO) courses with both Royal Roads University and BCcampus since 2012 and is the original designer of FLO Synchronous, a course that helps people learn how to design and facilitate virtual learning experiences. She is a co-author of the Facilitating Learning Online (FLO) Facilitation Guide, an open educational resource that is meant to support institutions to offer the FLO courses. Beth has been a strong user of Liberating Structures for a number of years and regularly facilitates workshops to help others learn how to use them. Beth co-stewards the Vancouver Island Liberating Structures User Group with several other people. She also is the convenor of the Victoria Facilitators Group, which she began in 2011.
Beth is the author of Design to Engage: How to Create and Facilitate a Great Learning Experience for Any Group, a “how to” book for people wanting to grow their skills in facilitating workshops. She launched her podcast, Facilitating on Purpose, in September 2022. Beth is a qualified Instructor and Trainer of the Instructional Skills Workshop. She has a Master of Education in Adult Education from The University of British Columbia, a B.A. from Wilfrid Laurier University, and also holds certificates in intercultural studies and volunteer management. Beth is a member of the International Association of Facilitators. You can often find her hanging out with her family and friends, reading a good book, baking something, walking in nature, and coming up with new ideas.
Carla Green | Communications Coordinator
Carla has worked in the field of human rights and community development for over 20 years in Peru, Zimbabwe, Ghana, and Canada. Most recently, she worked with immigrant and refugee newcomers, and various programs dedicated to building more welcoming, inclusive, and connected communities.
At the heart of Carla’s work is a passion for research, writing, and public engagement. These are the skills Carla looks most forward to using every day in her work in communications and writing, while also sharing her creativity, and love for colour and design.
Carla’s formal education includes BAs in Psychology and Anthropology from the University of Alberta, a BA in Political Science from the University of British Columbia, and an MA in Political Science from Acadia University. She was fortunate to have completed her graduate research while working with women-led organizations in Zimbabwe, and then to live and work for several years in the upper east region of Ghana. These experiences formed the foundation of her knowledge about human rights and community engagement, and continues to inspire every aspect of her work here in Canada.
In addition to the work she does, Carla loves spending time with her family, coming up with new and creative projects, and planning travel adventures near and far.
Valeria Cortés | Learning Designer
Val has worked in the field of education for over two decades. She has extensive experience working with post-secondary institutions and community organizations across cultures. Through course design and facilitation, she has helped thousands of people learn from each other and feel empowered to take action to enhance their organizations and communities.
Val is an Associate Faculty member at Royal Roads University, where she teaches and designs leadership courses at both undergraduate and graduate levels. In her courses and practice, Val emphasizes the need to understand different ways of knowing and being, as well as a holistic approach to learning. Val’s familiarity with work in multicultural contexts, and her use of arts-based and systems-thinking approaches, give her the tools and insight to explore issues from different perspectives and to create inclusive spaces.
While Val’s practical experience feeds strongly into her work, she also has a solid academic background. She holds an MA in Leadership Studies from the University of Victoria, as well as a Masters of Education and a B.Sc. in Information Systems Engineering from Tecnológico de Monterrey. Her published work focuses on leadership and social justice, universal design for learning, and critical and holistic pedagogies in intercultural learning. Val loves spending time with her family, and being involved in her community. With her alter-ego, the puppet Giggles, she visits schools and community organizations to help children learn about their rights.
Karyn Lemberg | Learning Technologist
Karyn Lemberg has 20 years of experience in Multimedia Design and eLearning Development, having previously held positions as an eLearning Designer/Developer, Web & Multimedia Designer, Animator and Illustrator for both Print and Online courses. Currently a Senior Learning Technologist at Royal Roads University, she supports Faculty with online course development and tweaking of technologies. Also a freelance contractor, she loves creating interactive online modules primarily using Articulate Storyline.
Karyn’s formal education includes courses in Fine Arts (Malaspina College), Education (University of Victoria) and an Advanced Animation Diploma with Honours (Computer Master Institute of Technology). A combination of interests in both Design and Education is an excellent fit for designing effective and attractive learning experiences. Her skills include web design, illustration, interactive e-learning solutions, 2D animation, 3D animation, and interactive e-learning solutions. She is constantly expanding her knowledge by participating in online learning opportunities and testing various apps and plugins.
When there is time to relax, she’ll be out in the garden with a camera, reading or walking on the beach with her two dogs.
Ryan Thomson | Learning Technologist
When Ryan was young, he hated school. It was boring and slow and generally did not align with his playful sensibilities, or how he learned and communicated. The mix of ‘A’s and ‘E’s on his report cards exemplified this, and his teachers often struggled, knowing Ryan was smart and creative and should be doing better. Ryan grew into a strong communicator and upon graduating, was offered a full scholarship to continue his writing career at Concordia University. He was unsure if this was the path for him, knowing that classrooms were not where he excelled. He wanted so much more.
It was around this time that Ryan began learning about design, staying up late, and applying his communication skills in new ways through animation, music, storytelling, and traditional design. He found great joy in this work and that joy was the seed that grew into a passion for communicating ideas in ways everyone could understand and enjoy.
Soon Ryan had enough material in his portfolio to apply for jobs, and he knew exactly where his newfound skillset was needed most; the classroom. In the 20+ years following, Ryan has worked with countless schools, nonprofits, and fortune 500 companies, designing world-class learning tools with a keen awareness that people are the heart of online course development and to engage learners, there must be a conversation and a knowledge exchange. Above all else, Ryan’s work is founded on facilitating that sense of conversation between a learner and what they seek to learn.
Michelle Hohertz | Technical Assistant
Michelle has worked in the supportive technology industry for over 20 years, assisting with a wide variety of technical queries. She assists Beth with anything she needs from monitoring emails, material review, or mysterious “how to’s” that crop up. Michelle’s interests lie in making technology and information accessible to everyone.
Her formal education includes an honours degree from the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology in Applied Information Systems Technology. Michelle currently works full-time at the University of Victoria in the University Systems department.
Michelle also volunteers her time as a Scout Leader with Scouts Canada and with the Women in Transition House in Victoria, BC. In her downtime, Michelle enjoys learning the accordion, hosting international students in her home, and spending time with her family.
Hayley Eng | Graphic Designer
With a background in graphic design and UX/UI Design, Hayley designs templates and illustrative assets for the e-learning courses we create for clients. Hayley enjoys using her creativity and skills to brighten up courses to help keep users engaged in the content.
Hayley’s formal education includes a degree in biology from the University of British Columbia. However, soon after graduation, she decided to pursue her passion in design in hopes of one day merging the two passions together. Currently, Hayley works full-time as a junior graphic designer for a Chinese marketing agency in Vancouver.
Outside of design, Hayley enjoys getting outdoors and exploring all that BC has to offer. On her days off, she loves to go hiking, camping, or playing badminton with her friends.