Blackboard Inc., a leading education technology company for teaching, learning and student engagement, today announced a new partnership with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), the leading U.S. center for robotic exploration of the solar system. As part of the collaboration, JPL has implemented Blackboard Learn, the company’s flagship learning management system (LMS), to support the growth and development of its employees.

JPL has recently embarked on a journey to expand and improve the ways it delivers learning activities and encourages knowledge sharing. The Laboratory is in the process of moving from an instructor-led, physical environment to a learner-driven, online environment where knowledge is regularly transferred between employees, institutional knowledge is better retained, and JPL staff have greater choice in determining their learning path.

In support of this goal, JPL has built a comprehensive learning online ecosystem where Blackboard Learn serves as a platform for structured knowledge exchange in an asynchronous environment.  The Laboratory has established role-based communities of practice within Blackboard’s LMS, where senior technical experts serve as mentors and exchange ideas with colleagues who share a common area of technical expertise. Blackboard Learn will also be utilized to deliver technical onboarding for new employees, facilitate virtual classrooms, and curate technical documentation and reference materials that can be shared with employees on an ongoing basis. 

“Blackboard is proud to be a part of NASA JPL’s efforts to create a dynamic online learning environment that helps their employees share knowledge and learn from one other,” said Alex Kissal, Vice President of Blackboard Government Solutions. “We look forward to continuing to work with their talented team to provide valuable and engaging online learning experiences for all JPL employees.”

“Blackboard provides the JPL team a flexible virtual environment to exchange ideas and concepts while retaining enough structure to archive and distribute the critical knowledge exchanged within the system,” said Tony Gagliardo, Director of Technical Learning and Development at NASA JPL. “This structured yet flexible approach is acting as a catalyst to the formation of communities of practice and helping us to prepare our 2025 workforce.”

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About Blackboard Inc.

Our mission is to partner with the global education community to enable learner and institutional success, leveraging innovative technologies and services. With an unmatched understanding of the world of the learner, the most comprehensive student-success solutions, and the greatest capacity for innovation, Blackboard is education’s partner in change.


JPL is the leading U.S. center for robotic exploration of the solar system, and has 19 spacecraft and 10 major instruments carrying out planetary, Earth science and space-based astronomy missions.