About Me

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I have been an elementary and secondary school teacher and administrator. Currently, I am a faculty member in the Faculty of Education at Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. My M.Ed. and Ph.D. had a focus on the educational and linguistic experiences of children who moved from other countries to Canada.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

A good news story about BlackBerry (or how does a smartphone help a principal in Haiti?)

There has been a lot of negative press about BlackBerry lately as they struggle to compete with the Apples and Androids of the smartphone world. Here are two reminders of some pretty incredible ways in which BlackBerry has made a positive impact, and will continue to make an impact, on one part of the world - Haiti:

1. We have distributed more than 100 BlackBerry smartphones in Haiti. Many of these have been donated by individuals in Ontario but BlackBerry has also donated approximately 25. These phones have helped principals connect with each other (and other educational leaders in North America) through the Digital Mentoring Project. As well, the phones have made a significant impact on the ability of principals to access resources. An upcoming book chapter and journal article provide a number of examples of this - stay tuned!

2. A director from BlackBerry will be traveling with me to Haiti in October and will be providing training for principals and teachers on how to use smartphones to access on-line educational resources and to engage in professional networks. This director is traveling on his own time and money to support the work we have been doing in Haiti. He is passionate about BlackBerry and equally passionate about Haiti (20 years ago he lived and worked for an extensive time in Haiti). His knowledge of Creole/Kreyol and of the smartphone market will be a significant support to our work in Haiti.

So, every time I hear a negative commentary or forecast about BlackBerry, I am immediately reminded that this is a company which has made a significant impact on our community, and in lesser-known ways, a significant impact in Haiti.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So wonderful to hear some positive commentary about BlackBerry. It truly is a company which has made a significant impact which surpasses anything the other smartphone companies have done besides stockpile money.