#etmooc Always Learners

 

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Inspiring as always, Educational Technology Massive Open Online Course  Community gathered together for the Third Anniversary of ETMOOC [ #etmooc ] ! More than twenty etmooc-ers met in Zoom to honor Alec Couros who started the waves rippling across the universe of connected conversations on the Internet.

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Yes, the course ended three years ago, but the communities that formed from that online course still ebb and flow in connections, conversations, collaborations. We learned to be open, to connect, to start conversations and take the chance to start something new — to try something new. Although we worked with technology, the essence of success was the openness in choice, the acceptance of where each was, and the support from all to try, fail, try again — together. It was the reciprocal relationships and conversations encouraged by the facilitators and developed further by the participants that kept the course inviting and inspiring, allowing each to “choose their own adventure,” as Alec expects and reminds us.

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So, yes, we are still a community, now building our own communities that resonate with our learning from #etmooc.  We learned to be learners again — and felt the struggle and the wonder of change. Change in mindset, change in possibilities, and change in our outlook of the world of education.

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Because #etmooc-ers so appreciate the learning we gleaned from the vision of  Alec Couros, we decided to do something that he [ with an idea from Daniel Bassill ] had suggested at the very end of our course:

The bigger question for me is always, “So I’ve developed a digital identity, and I’m connected to a powerful network of individuals from across the planet – what can I do with this to change the world in a meaningful way?”

We knew we wanted to honor Alec — how could we do so and change the world?

The idea from the lead team [ @rljessen @sspellmancann @christinahendricks @debbiefuco ] was to create a scholarship fund in Alec’s father’s name. Please read here [and donate if your can]:

The Mario Couros Memorial Bursary

The Mario Couros Memorial Bursary will help newcomers to Canada in reaching their dream of being one of tomorrow’s educators by providing financial assistance to pursue their Education Degree at the University of Regina. Mario came to Canada from Greece on December 14th 1957. He lived, worked and raised his family in Saskatchewan. He wanted to make a life and a difference for his family. Mario was a volunteer, a caring supportive father, grandfather, a loving husband and an extremely hard working man. He was a great role model for his children and others as he continued to be a lifelong learner with a fabulous work ethic until his passing. This award is dedicated in his memory.

It is also a tribute to his son Dr. Alec Couros who continues his father’ s legacy by inspiring and encouraging others to pursue their educational aspirations and follow a path to life-long learning.

The bursary will make a meaningful impact by breaking down the financial barriers to higher education and encouraging outstanding academic achievement. By contributing to this bursary you will enable Education students to focus on what matters most : their education.

The goal is to raise $ 25.000 to create an endowment that will allow for a permanent bursary at the University of Regina ‘s Faculty of Education. Your contribution to the Mario Couros memorial Bursary will live on in perpetuity in memory and honour of Mario’s legacy.   

Go here to learn how to participate: The Mario Couros Memorial Bursary Information

So, we continue to learn and grow together and help others. Isn’t that why we’re here?

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Thank you  Alec Couros for dropping a pebble into a puddle that grew into an ocean connecting a world of passionate educators and that continues to ripple in learning and sharing in so many ways that we will never know. Thank you to your family, including George and mom Mary for your thoughtful and encouraging ways.

Thank you Susan Spellman-Cann and Rhonda Jessen for all the behind-the-scenes effort and tonight’s awesome anniversary party!

And, remember, #etmooc welcomes all.

Please join our community here in Google Plus.

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