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Frank Schulenburg named executive director of new Wiki Education Foundation
(San Francisco, California) 12 February 2014 -- The Wiki Education
Foundation, a new nonprofit organization that supports the Wikipedia
Education Program in the United States and Canada, has named Frank
Schulenburg as its inaugural executive director. Schulenburg, formerly
senior director of programs at the Wikimedia Foundation, will begin
his new role February 18, 2014.
"I look forward to leading the Wiki Education Foundation," said
Schulenburg. "We are off to a great start, and will build on the
strong success of the Wikimedia Foundation's Wikipedia Education
Program to further engage educators, researchers and students to
provide more high-quality content for Wikipedia's readers."
Started by the Wikimedia Foundation in 2010, the Wikipedia Education
Program encourages students to contribute content to Wikipedia
articles on course-related subjects as part of classroom assignments
developed by their faculty and instructors. Over the past four years,
more than 6,000 students in the United States and Canada have
contributed content to Wikipedia as part of the Wikipedia Education
Program, adding the equivalent of 36,600 printed pages of content to
Wikipedia and significantly increasing the amount of high-quality
content that Wikipedia offers its half-billion readers.
In response to that success and to give the program more focused and
specialized support, in 2012 the Wikimedia Foundation began a process
to spin off the United States and Canada work into its own,
independent nonprofit organization. The resulting Wiki Education
Foundation was created in late 2013, and Schulenburg will be its first
executive director. The Wiki Education Foundation will continue to
support the Wikipedia Education Program in the United States and
Canada, and will develop additional programs to promote academic
research and teaching that engage with Wikipedia.
"I am delighted that Frank has agreed to lead the Wiki Education
Foundation as executive director," said Dr. Diana Strassmann, Carolyn
and Fred McManis Distinguished Professor in the Practice at Rice
University and chair of the board of the Wiki Education Foundation,
who began using Wikipedia as a teaching tool in her classes in 2007.
"Under Frank's leadership, the Wiki Education Foundation will continue
to expand engagement among educators, students, and Wikipedia, and
will continue to diversify the community of Wikipedians, while
improving the quality and depth of Wikipedia."
"Frank is the perfect person to lead the Wiki Education Foundation,"
said Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director Sue Gardner. "Frank's a
very experienced Wikipedia contributor with a long track record of
inventing and leading successful programs that make Wikipedia better
and more useful for its readers. I am sorry we will lose him from the
Wikimedia Foundation, but I look forward to seeing the Wiki Education
Foundation thrive and succeed under his leadership."
A longtime Wikipedian and an employee of the Wikimedia Foundation
since 2008, Schulenburg has focused on broadening participation and
developing the public understanding of Wikipedia, especially among
subject matter experts. He has spoken globally about efforts to
increase the relevance of Wikipedia in academia. In 2006, he founded
Wikipedia Academy, an event aimed at cultivating dialogue between
Wikipedia contributors and academics. In 2009, he initiated the
Bookshelf Project, which created the first educational materials for
new Wikipedia contributors. In 2010 he designed and implemented the
Wikipedia Education Program. From 2012 on he was a member of the
executive management team of the Wikimedia Foundation, overseeing the
Wikipedia Education Program, Wikipedia Zero, and a new initiative to
evaluate the impact of programmatic activities across countries.
Schulenburg has been involved with Wikipedia since 2005, both as an
author and as a photographer.
The Wiki Education Foundation board conducted an extensive search for
an executive director before selecting Schulenburg. The board includes
educators from a variety of backgrounds, Wikipedia volunteers, and
other key stakeholders. The Wiki Education Foundation is currently
supporting university instructors in the United States and Canada.
Interested instructors are encouraged to send an email to
About the Wiki Education Foundation
The Wiki Education Foundation supports innovative uses of Wikipedia
and related projects in communities of teaching, learning, and inquiry
in the United States and Canada. The Foundation aims to improve the
breadth, scope, and quality of Wikimedia content; enhance student
information fluency; and increase the number and diversity of
contributors to the free knowledge movement by engaging educators,
researchers, and students. The Wiki Education Foundation has applied
for 501(c)(3) charity status.
About the Wikipedia Education Program
The Wikipedia Education Program means the end of throwaway assignments
and the beginning of real-world impact for students. The premise is
simple: Instructors assign their students to contribute to Wikipedia
as part of their coursework. The Wikipedia Education Program is a
global initiative, with activities in more than 60 countries. The
Wikimedia Foundation launched the Wikipedia Education Program in 2011
after a successful pilot. It supports the program with brochures,
online trainings, a MediaWiki extension enabling educators to track
student work, and other resources.
About the Wikimedia Foundation
The Wikimedia Foundation is the nonprofit organization that operates
Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. According to comScore Media Metrix,
Wikipedia and the other projects operated by the Wikimedia Foundation
receive more than 490 million unique visitors per month, making them
the fifth-most popular web property worldwide (comScore, December
2013). Available in 287 languages, Wikipedia contains more than 30
million articles contributed by a global volunteer community of
roughly 80,000 people. Based in San Francisco, California, the
Wikimedia Foundation is an audited, 501(c)(3) charity that is funded
primarily through donations and grants.
Contact for press inquiries
Frank Schulenburg, Wiki Education Foundation
+1 (415) 517 0453
Communications, Wikimedia Foundation
+1 415-839-6885 ext 6633