Cantilever Instruction + Design  is a full-service developer of custom professional education and training programs. We have a proven track record of distilling complex concepts into clear, engaging learning an communication materials. Our approach combines instructional design, clear writing, and strong visuals to create compelling, relevant learning experiences. We give each client our best advice and guidance, high-quality deliverables and responsive service.  Cantilever was founded by Betsy Gast and Eric von Schrader who have been collaborating on learning projects since 2009.

We ask questions, challenge assumptions, and do whatever it takes to get to the solution that is right for you.


A cantilever is a beam or girder fixed at only one end. A cantilever requires careful planning and technical rigor, but yields an extraordinarily simple result that is often inspiring.

Betsy Gast
Betsy GastOwner, Creative Director
Betsy has been managing and developing training solutions for over a decade. She blends her creative direction with instructional design principles to generate professional certificates programs, regulatory compliance training, employee engagement and sales initiatives, exam preparation, and continuing education for credential management. Her learning packages typically blend a variety of instructional tools, including: self-paced online training modules, knowledge assessments, workbooks, and job-aids. She combines her architectural and instructional design expertise to create virtual learning environments and custom visuals to engage target audiences and communicate complex and unique subject matter. Before forming Cantilever, Betsy worked as an architect on both commercial and residential projects.

Eric von Schrader
Eric von SchraderDirector of Instructional Design
Eric is a learning consultant, instructional designer, and writer with more than 30 years of experience in a wide range of communication and learning methods, from workshops and print materials to e-learning, webinars, and videos.  Eric’s primary focus is teaching complex topics through engaging, effective learning approaches. He has expertise in key subject areas such as project management, healthcare communications, sustainable design practices and leadership development. Previously, Eric was a director of instructional design for Maritz Learning, which provided learning solutions for Fortune 500 companies.

Melanie Share
Melanie ShareDirector of Learning Development
Melanie has been creating engaging, effective learning solutions for nearly a decade. With a passion for sustainability and an eye for detail, Melanie blends creativity with her type-A adherence to deadlines to get the job done (right and on time). Melanie’s expertise is in working with subject matter experts to translate and visualize complex topics into actionable, accessible education that helps transform our world. Prior to joining Cantilever, Melanie spent eight years directing content development at the U.S. Green Building Council, supporting the learning needs of over 80,000 LEED professionals.

Amanda Claypool
Amanda ClaypoolDirector of Learning Strategy
Amanda has a long and varied work history, including Commercial Lending, Product Marketing and Global Customs and Trade. The common thread woven through all her roles has been her ability to take a strategic approach to education and training programs. Amanda’s specialty is seeing the big picture, allowing her to facilitate conversations and programs that drive elegant solutions to highly technical needs.  Prior to joining Cantilever, Amanda spent 14 years building and growing a training program for Nike, Inc. that instructed a 700+ person factory operations teams spread across Asia on highly technical customs requirements. The program resulted in decreases in Audits, fines and duty expenditures while increasing speed through Nike’s supply chain.

Our Team

Instructional designers: We follow a disciplined approach, based on professional best practices and practical judgment, to design learning experiences that will efficiently teach the skills and knowledge that your learners need.

Graphic designers & Illustrators: Strong visuals are essential tools for learning. We work with your organization’s graphic standards and design for clarity and impact. We draw from a wide range of graphic elements and styles to develop memorable visuals, including diagrams, charts, icons, infographics, architectural drawings and 3D illustrations.

E-learning developers: We create engaging interactive learning environments and deliver complete e-learning files ready to be launched on a variety of learning management systems.

Animators: Our animators translate complex subject matter into clear, engaging visual stories.

Cantilever also engages a variety of talented professionals to augment and extend our learning solutions, including:

Voice Talent: Sound brings it all together. People learn better when they can hear clear, concise explanations. We work with variety of recording studios and voice talent to prepare engaging audio tracks for our solutions.

Videographers: Nothing can replace live video to demonstrate a method or skill. We work with videographers to capture real world scenarios, to introduce subject matter experts and to simulate training interactions.

Photographers: Images tell stories that words cannot. When necessary, we work with professional photographers to take specific course imagery. We also use a variety of stock photography sites.

Our team has been solving training and communication problems for clients, from Fortune 500 companies to leading professional organizations, for more than 25 years.