The Beauty of Group Dynamics

When I first learned about and began to explore the EPET hybrid Phd program, I didn’t think beyond the program itself and the people immediately involved. My view was narrowly focused on the following two parts, which, in and of themselves, should be enough for anyone!

  1. TPACK: If you’re in education and you haven’t explored the TPACK framework, you’re missing out. Even simple awareness of the dynamic interface of content, pedagogy, and technology completely re-frames both how you perceive curriculum and craft lessons.
  2. The People: It was because of the available information and blogs regarding EPET professors that drew me further into degree exploration. When I realized I would be able to learn from and work with people like Drs. Matt Koehler and Punya Mishra, creators of TPACK, and Dr. Patrick Dickson — even just breathe the same air or stand in the same building and, hopefully, somehow cosmically participate in the massive levels of creativity and energy swirling in this college — well, then I was sold.

Having completed the first two weeks of the very first courses, I’ve had time to marinate in the EPET culture, get to know the people in question, and meet my fellow cohort members. I’m simultaneously struck by a variety of thoughts:

  1. I was right! This program and these people are even more phenomenal and synergistic than Ifirst thought possible. More wonderful people abound, such as one of our first professors, Dr. Cary Roseth, and I’m looking forward to meeting and working with others I’m yet unaware of. We

    Photo credit: breederretriever .com

    also met many faculty via the Parade of Scholars. If these faculty are any indication of future scholarly interactions, life will be glorious. I am so excited that I feel almost puppy-like, a little golden retriever bouncing with joy.

  2. My colleagues are amazing. I knew, of course that simply because of self-selecting measures that the type of people who would apply to such a program would be kindred spirits and hugely complementary in terms of skills and strengths. What I didn’t realize was that there would actually be an incredible diversity of skills and strengths and backgrounds. Seriously, I’ve been blown away by the professionalism and delightful personality quirks and levels of expertise that abound in this first EPET hybrid PhD cohort.  We are truly more than the sum of our parts — and should we choose to harness our energy, we are certainly capable of revolutionizing the world of education.

With the first taste still lingering (fleshy texture with a fine balance; cherry with a hint of pomegranate), I look forward to the next four years with anticipation, hope, and such deep joy that I swear I shall be floating for the next couple of weeks; life is good!