The story so far...

What you see on this blog may be better understood if you know how I got here, so let's give it a try!

The professional side

After I got my MSc in Computer Engineering, I started my career in Sybase in technical support. I got a taste of high level database and software development there. My next job was much more of a small business experience, involving Java, mobile phones, and a lot of fun.

With the move to Vietnam, I had the opportunity to join the educational sector first at a university level in RMIT, and I loved it. When you see the spark of understanding, the "a-ha!" moment in students, you are hooked. So I quickly became certified to teach, and as my claim to fame back then, I was runner up for Teacher of the Year at RMIT in 2008.

In my previous role as Assistant ICT Director at Saigon South International School, I had the chance to experience first-hand how this position fits my goals perfectly. I can combine my ICT background and my passion for education while reaching students at a much larger scale than a single classroom.

So I enrolled in a MBA for Education at Keele University, that I highly recommend. I believe that it has provided me with invaluable resources for the third dimension of the Director of Technology as manager and school administrator, from budgeting to people management, strategic planning, and whole school improvement.

Then life brought us to Bali, where I am the IT Manager, as well as teaching MYP Design, at Bali Island School. I am thoroughly enjoying this great opportunity to grow further, apply what I have learned, and have a major role in the direction that our students develop. STEM, Computer Science in Education, Computational Thinking, all of these are influenced and can take place if the school supports and provides an environment where students get exposure to different environments. I am proud to play my part in that goal.

The philosophical side

My philosophy of education leads me to support open environments, empowering students through education rather than locked down systems that remove the opportunity to experience hands-on authentic learning. As educators, we must remove the fear to experiment, and encourage a positive view of failure as a learning experience and a positive sign of effort and engagement.

I believe in helping students thrive and develop the Digital Literacy skills that will enable them to make critical, well-informed decisions about their use of technology now and for the rest of their lives. I believe that this outcome can not be achieved if we close our eyes and pretend that the technology is not there or does not deserve to be studied.

I admire and am influenced by the work of Seymour Papert, Sugata Mitra, Mitch Resnick of MIT, and the ideas of Project-Based Learning, Design Thinking, and the Maker and Open Source movements.

It is equally important for me to have a philosophy of leadership and management. In the globalized world where we now live, the effective leader must be above all a good listener, and aware of the cultural differences that may be at play.

I believe in the principles of service leadership, and providing an environment where everyone feels respected and listened to. Ideas should be considered based on their value and not their source, and wherever possible, we must pay attention to the growth and self-improvement of all school employees.

I believe in setting clear expectations for duties and behaviours, and encouraging open dialogue and transparency. I believe that all decisions should be able to stand scrutiny and challenge, though not necessarily require full consensus.

As a leader and manager, my greatest influence has to be Jim Collins and his ideas about Level 5 leadership.

The personal side

I'll keep it brief, but add more later.
I'm a movie geek, a music geek, and I love dancing salsa. My bragging rights would be playing a big part in kickstarting the salsa dancing scene in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
And lately, I'm trying to get decent at playing the Peruvian cajon. Still a long way to go!
I have a beautiful and supportive wife that got me into education, and we do our best to raise two wonderful little girls that will hopefully get her passion for life.
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