The ITC constantly monitors distance learning-related activity in Washington DC. During the eight years of the Obama Administration – beginning with the passage of the Higher Education Opportunities Act (HEOA-2008), online programs dealt with an increasing number of regulations as well as collateral actions from Federal courts.

In the last few months, our members have reported receiving mailings that intimate that to be compliant with Federal requirements, a Distance Learning program must use a technology solution to authenticate students. Not every vendor is doing this, but I have also received the postcard that sets an ominous tone.

I enjoy this weekly opportunity to muse on the many challenges AND opportunities associated with Distance Learning. And I am amazed at the breadth and diversity of those involved in the Distance Learning movement. This week, I want to reach out to those of you who are ready to grow in your role as a DL administrator and emerging leader.

Yes, you personally? And when was the last time you unleashed the creative, unbridled talent of those you work with? Do you try to inspire every day? Have you fostered a culture of trust as a colleague or supervisor? Today’s remarks are focused on making you feel guilty. Seriously. The questions above are part of the critical components of true innovation, creativity and success. The only...