A journey to discover the people who change our world.

Friday, November 17, 2006

While in Ubon, I stayed out with Linda Nowakowski, a woman I came in contact with throught the Omidyar Network , and her dog, Nu Song, (meaning, Second Rat!) I however took to calling him Nuisence. I’m a dog lover but this one, cute as it was, stretched my affection. Nu Song took a shine to my toes. He nibbled, them, hard and frequently until I couldn’t even walk across the floor without them attacked!!

Anyway, moaning aside.

Linda teaches English to undergraduate business management students at the university. It’s a high tech classroom. 25 students sit around 20 computers (still a shortage of availability), internet live. They are creating a Wiki for their course, an online collaborative website, to store resources, notes, contact details, a glossary of terms which can be looked up in class, and acccess an online dictionary and thesaurus.
Assignments are emailed (when they are actually done… apparently completion rates have not been high this term, but Linda is on to it!). The world is at their fingertips. No digital divide for these students. I do not really know what I was expecting, but it was not this. Expectations uprooted, in a postitive way. Great.

I got to give a talk to the students about my travels; sharing some photos and tales. The African continent seemed like another world to them, but maybe now, it is just a little bit closer. I hope so…it’s at their fingertips after all.


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