Monday, January 12, 2009
Although the year started very slowly, I'm still very content about the opportunities that have presented themselves so far. I've been very anxious about getting started with the projects of the year and finally I'm sensing a thrilling excitement about the ideas and initiatives from last year now starting to develop and grow into possible and amazing success stories. 3 key words:
1) Research - my Thesis results (successfully found and analysed with my Master Thesis partner Patrik), together with my persistence to continue researching and working here in Cali and the major slum area Aguablanca, have resulted in major opportunities for an interesting future. I've been asked to potentially lead a research project for a well renown Doctor of (Austrian) Education Economics in New Castle, England, Pauline Dixon, under whom I could start my PhD already next year, from 2010 to 2012. Wonderful opportunity and immensely motivating to feel the support from one of the great researchers and her Research Center EG West Center, with such great interest in my area of specialisation.
Also one of the great universities here, Universidad Autónoma de Occidente, has been showing its interest in my research and in including me in its present and future projects, much thanks to a personal contact, Rodrigo, who works at the university and has many years of education in his professional experience, including a couple of very interesting years for the Government. A major research project that the university is proposing before the European Union might result in a major cash inflow for one of the communities here, with the highlight on Conflict Reduction and Prevention among Children in Areas of Conflict. This could include an educational element that I would be responsible for.
2) Technology - 10 years of incredible research in India and elsewhere by the great Professor Sugata Mitra might be a key part of the educational element for the project described above. Having met Prof Mitra and been presented his research personally at the EG West Center after an invitation from amazing Pauline Dixon, the possibilities of realising similar work here in Aguablanca (Cali, Colombia) are very realistic. (See the picture of Mitra's "Whole in the Wall" experiment.) The recipe for success is in my hands. I really hope the permission of planting the seeds will reach me.
3) Education - This year will be challenging. With so beautiful promises for next year and already from next semester, when a likely Education Faculty will be initiated at the Autonoma University, I have to succeed in getting started with indepth research in Aguablanca - no matter the financial difficulties. I have my great partner Rodrigo who his highly motivating and supportive. We're planning to start a Foundation this year, which this blog hopes to evoke reason and motivation for and I would hereby like to welcome all kinds of support.
In summary my friends, amazing prospects with major challenges integrating education for the poor with latest technology and research.