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joan-zoellner-dana-center-staffJoan Zoellner, M.A.
Launch Years Initiative Lead

Phone: 682.478.5247

Dana Center Role

Joan leads the Launch Years Initiative, which seeks to usher in a new paradigm to support students with math pathways that are aligned to their goals. This work is currently taking place in 22 states, focusing on the last two years of high school and the first two years of postsecondary education. Joan’s leadership enables the member states to learn with and from one another, so that they can each develop and implement solutions that make sense within their unique contexts.  

Joan also supports the development, implementation, and continuous improvement of innovative professional learning offerings in both virtual and face-to-face settings. She presents findings at national and regional conferences of professional mathematics organizations to inform the mathematics community about best practices in teaching gateway mathematics students. 

Joan previously served as the project lead for the Corequisite Research Design Collaborative, a national initiative designed to dramatically increase the number of racialized and low-income students enrolled in and completing corequisite supports that are based on sound, research-informed design principles. She also developed curricula for the Dana Center Mathematics Pathways, a transformative redesign to modernize entry-level college mathematics programs through working with states, systems, universities, and colleges. She has worked extensively with the development and revision of the DCMP’s Quantitative ReasoningReasoning with Functions 1, and Reasoning with Functions 2 courses. 

Before Joining the Dana Center

Joan taught mathematics at Clark College in Vancouver, Washington for 8 years. During her time at Clark, she taught a range of precollege math courses,College Algebra, College Trigonometry, Math in Society (quantitative reasoning), Finite Math, and Calculus I, II, and III. Joan created and facilitated several professional learning workshops including a 10-week professional development course in how to incorporate active learning in community college classes. Joan also served on several campus-wide committees, and helped launch the math department’s pre-college math redesign process.


M.A., Mathematics, Indiana University, Bloomington

B.A., Mathematics, Humboldt State University

Codeveloped and Cofacilitated Professional Learning

Deepening student understanding: Promoting effective student discourse through active and collaborative learning (Focused Online Collaborative Interactions series)

What’s all this fuss about growth mindset and other psychological factors? (online webinar)

Selected Presentations

Strategies and resources for implementing and improving math pathways. Presented at the Washington State Student Success Institute, Seattle, WA (October 2018).

Are we compromising higher ed values? Presented at Clark College’s Focus on Learning: Guided Pathways meeting, Vancouver, WA (March 2017).

Active learning tools that you can use on Monday. Presented at the National Association for Developmental Education annual conference, Anaheim, CA (March 2016).

Teaching and research at the community college. Presented at the University of Portland’s Mathematics Colloquium, Portland, OR (November 2015).

Guided inquiry in mathematics. Presented at the American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges 40th annual conference, Nashville, TN (November 2014).