Monday, September 14, 2009

Leaving Otago - going to Canberra

I resigned from Otago Polytechnic last week. I'll be taking up a position at the University of Canberra, starting in October, working 1 year with the National Institute of Sports Studies. The appointment is a little ironic, considering I haven't had much to do with the Otago Institute of Sport while at the Polytechnic. Browsing the courses at the NISS, I can see that Sports Media is probably an area I could help in.

The eternal optimist Keith Lyons landed me the job there after we reconnected through Facebook! I first met Keith back in 2005 when he invited me down to tour sports education facilities in Canberra. He and I both share an enthusiasm for social media, the Internet and their role in education. I'll have to focus this some, onto the topic of sport I see.. but I'm sure Keith and the team have good ideas. I have a few already, but better hold them until I know what is going on there.

Another big attraction to Canberra is the handful of extremely progressive educationalists I know working there. There's James Neil, Marg O'Connell and Leonard Low for starters... will be nice to have more chances to talk with them face to face.

Sunshine and I are both a little sad to leave Dunedin. We have to sell our house that we put so much into, and say goodbye to wonderful friends and colleagues. I feel like I'm leaving something I started as unfinished - the development of more independent open educational practices using social media... but its well started at least - Otago Polytechnic has set up the Open Educational Resource Foundation which will capitalise on that initial work, I'm sure.

Many thanks to Otago Polytechnic and the many supportive individuals there for these past 3 and a half years.


Sarah Stewart said...

I'm gutted you're leaving but understand you're ready for new challenges.

You have taught me an incredible amount about education, and for that I am truly grateful.

Hope to keep in touch & keep picking your brains especially as I too enter a new phase of my career. Let me know if you hear of any good jobs in Oz!!

Good luck to you and Sunshine...the Stewarts wish you all the best!

Minhaaj said...

Goodluck where ever you go my friend. You'd always shine specially with the sunshine with you :)

Anonymous said...

May this be a new and wonderful chapter to your adventure. Am secretly and selfishly stoked that you will be closer. x rhea

Anonymous said...

Thrilled to bits that you've seen the light and returning to God's country! Canberra may be an interesting place to live - you must tell us how things work out for you both when you get there ... convince the rest of us that Canberra is worthy of our recognition (just joking)!

Whereabouts in the ACT are you planning to reside? There are a few good places across the NSW border if you'd like more info.

Carolyn said...

You have challenged me and that has not always been comfortable, but I have learned so much through courses and just by working in this environment with you. You may feel that our school has not always responded well to your ideas but I feel your influence has actually been huge.
I am sure it is good for you to be getting closer to home at this time and wish you and Sunshine well for the future.
Look forward to keeping up with you online, and hearing how it all goes in Canberra.

Michael said...

It's weird Leigh, and I don't quite understand it, but I feel a little sad that you're leaving Dunedin and Otago. But I'm with Minhaaj - you'll shine wherever you go. And it will be good to have you 'back.'

Keith Lyons said...

I think it is a wonderful decision ...but you could say I am biased! I am so delighted you are coming to Canberra, Leigh.

Brian said...

Wow, if I'd put half as much work into a house as you had into yours, I don't know I could ever leave...

Sincere best wishes to you and Sunshine in your new home.

Helen said...

Very sorry to hear you are heading back across the Tasman Leigh, I have really benefited from your time here at Otago Polytechnic and will miss having you around. Thanks for all your enthusiasm and help with matters technical, and very best wishes for the future.

classyadele said...

Sorry to see you go, but am happier that your new workplace would bring in new challenges that would continue to inspire your pursuit for effective social media usage and implementation in education :) Take care and God speed! Am sure where you're heading to now is definitely sunnier and warmer than Dunedin! :) See you on Twitter.

Jim Groom said...

Do you remmeber the Canberra flood of 1971?

Be careful down there, and good luck honcho!

Mark Smithers said...

Good luck in Canberra. I hear they are doing some intersting stuff there.


Hillary Jenkins said...

Like Sarah feel gutted you are leaving but wish both you and your family all the best.

Yea you are leaving unfinished work but thats how it is sometimes. Thanks for all the hard work you have put into our programme and into staff development, much appreciated.

You better pop up and say goodbye before you go!


Barbara Dieu said...

Congrats on your new job in Canberra and not only will you be in good company but I am sure you will excel as you have done at the Otago Polytechnic. Let's keep talking, sharing and exchanging. Good luck and wishing you the best!

alexanderhayes said...

Hi Leigh,

I followed up on that conversation you and had as you deliberated your exit from Otago.

As we spoke of, there are glaring holes in anyones knowledge so in the hope to ellucidate our conversation a little further I replied to Nancy with some leads for you to follow -

You'll have no issues fitting into Canberra. It's still chully, there is plenty of suits to climb over and I hear that land is going cheap in Braidwood.

Besides, you no longer have a dutch as an excuse as to why you cant drink fine Pinot with me any further -

Plunty of wild wully shup on the way and perhaps our sons can wreak havoc together given any luck.

God speed :)

starpath said...

Good luck in your new post. I keep pointing people to your flexible learning course, which looked fantastic, and have just learnt that you are going. You have a lot to offer wherever you are.

Chris Morland said...

Hi Leigh how are things going in Aussie, hope u are over the soccer result. Given you have in your new job for a while now I thought a connection might bring a new collaboration between your new job and our sports institute. Interested in catching up?

Regards Chris Morland