I’ve leaked this out on Twitter, Facebook, and in personal conversations, but I’ve put off writing a blog post about it because I find it very hard to do justice to the people I’ve worked with at Keene State in a goodbye. So let me just say that despite crushing state cuts, constant friction, and a thousand other barriers that present themselves daily, the people I’ve worked with here at Keene State do amazing things. I am going to miss their optimism, humor, and grace under pressure. I’m going to miss their dedication to students, and their valuing of teaching as the core of the college experience. Mostly, I’m just going to miss *them*: there is no other way to say it.
In the quick but brutal pivot one is forced to do in these posts, I now must tell you how excited I am to have accepted a position as Director of Blended and Networked Learning at Washington State University at Vancouver. This gives me an opportunity to work with favorite (and brilliant) ex-colleague of mine who left Keene State to become Chancellor of that institution, as well as a host of others I met on a recent journey there.
The job will allow me to explore my passion — how different elements of digital and net-mediated learning can be used to improve a traditional campus-based education. Part of the job of the position is to connect WSU Vancouver into the discussions that are happening on these topics, so my relative absence from conference events on open education and net-mediated learning is likely to change, at least a bit. My colleagues reading this might see me a bit more (which is good, although I have never quite mastered the jet-lagged surreal experience of conferences — now’s the time I guess).
But yeah, a big part of this job (compared to my current one) is making connections that can help WSU Vancouver. So if you have a project you want to partner on, if you have a panel for which I might be a good fit, if you are interested in coming to WSU Vancouver and showing what you are doing, if you’d like me to talk to you at some point about what we’re doing — these sort of larger strategic areas are ones I will need to move into, and I guess the time to talk to me is now, while we are still spec’ing out what we might like to accomplish in the next year or two. I firmly believe that the only way our institutions are going to confront our current challenges is to find ways to work together, and if that means a bit more jet lag and sticky-bun psychosis, I’m ready to pay that price. If you are reading this blog and working on something good that you think WSU Vancouver might like to be part of (research, initiatives, experiments, grants, or events), shoot me an email (caulfield.mike at gmail) and we’ll talk.
(And if, by chance, you work at WSU Vancouver and are reading this, I’d like to talk to you most of all. Come by my office in VDEN, second floor, near the Vice Chancellor. I start there March 25, and want to know about all the cool things you are doing or would like to do…)