Our keynote presenter at Faculty Academy this year was Michael Wesch, and I have to admit I have never seen him present before. I was at ELI 2009 when he gave a keynote presentation, but the night before proved too tough for me to make his early morning keynote. So while I had seen his videos and followed his work from afar, I’d never seen him present—until about two weeks ago. And suffice it to say it was awesome! Wesch brought it, and brought it hard. He squeezed UMW’s Faculty Academy into an insanely tight travel schedule and we are ever so thankful he did—he had our president’s ear, and he framed a vision for the future of higher ed and media that resonated on all the right levels. As Guilia Forsythe noted during his talk on Twitter, “UMW should be very proud. #ds106 IS EXACTLY what @mwesch recommends re: teaching with media.” Indeed, Wesch’s talk seemed to brilliantly detail all the issues we are trying to get at in ds106, and it makes sense that both he and Gardner Campbell should loom so large in the vision of a distributed, online course that aims directly for creativity, enagagement, a sense of ownership (and wonder), as well as a critical investment in the new media that everywhere surrounds us.
Marth Burtis already used the video from his keynote at UMW as a way to introduce the vision and possibility of ds106 alongside Gardner’s “Bags of Gold” presentation at OpenEd, and I will be doing the same when my online Summer session starts up on June 20th. A big thanks to Wesch for for giving us a perfect framework to think about the work we are doing with #ds106! Now watch the video hippies (and apologies for the 30 second commercial, we are working on getting this moved over to ds106.tv).