I love Educause because there’s always buzz. This year, it seemed to hit a high-pitched fervor. The show comes alive and takes on a character of its own as technology leaders from across the country and globe share the challenges and issues that each of them is facing. It takes on even more character in a city like Philadelphia where the sights and sounds of the Reading Terminal Market swirl around bustling show-goers who are trying to get in a quick Ruben sandwich in between sessions. And, I was thrilled to know that the author of DIY-U, Anna Kamentz, would be there, imparting her unique perspective about students who will necessarily be designing their own unique ways to get a higher education.
One IT afficiando said to me, “It seems like each year, there’s a word that defines the show, and I think this year, it’s ‘cloud.’” Someone else commented, “No, it’s the whole ‘open’ thing.” Another said, “Well, I think it’s really all about ‘remediation’ and ‘standards’ because our funding is going to hinge on this.” It seems like everyone wants to find that one thing that will really impact them and their institutions, trying to get ahead of the wave so they don’t get engulfed by it. Others said, “shared services, video, blended learning.” I was most impressed by those colleges and universities that seem to be doing it all, driven by a unified vision around what’s really achievable.