I have a love-hate relationship with this time of year. I sincerely appreciate the opportunity I have to reconnect and celebrate with the people I care about most, but I often resent the hectic pace required to achieve those moments of peace and joy. Though in the end, the memories make all the effort worthwhile.

In general, this same scenario can apply to our lives at work. We strive all year to meet the goals set for us—or that we establish for ourselves—and at year-end, it can be very rewarding to look back on what we’ve accomplished. On the Cisco Education Blog, for example, we try to share news, thoughts, and ideas that will motivate and inspire readers to begin their own transformation in teaching and learning.

In that spirit, I thought it would be interesting to look back at the five most-read blog posts of 2017. Are they familiar? Feel free to take a second look. Or, if you missed them the first time, now’s your chance to see why they resonated with other readers.

1. Create New Learning Experiences with Cisco Spark. Today’s learning environments offer much more than just pencils and blackboards and rows and rows of desks. With Cisco Spark and Cisco Spark Board for Education, schools, colleges, and universities are personalizing the learning experience, helping students, educators and researchers work together across boundaries.

2. How Our Students Will Overcome Machines. It’s estimated that 65 percent of children entering school today will work in job types that don’t even exist yet. And, somewhat ironically, it’s not technical skills that will best equip them to thrive, but those skills considered to be the most human.

3. How Curtin University Is Building a Campus of the Future. Five years ago, Curtin University had no collaborative classrooms. Now it has 76—all video-enabled with cameras that can transmit in and out. The university also recently opened its first 180-seat classroom that’s completely video conference-enabled. This is all part of the university’s strategy for learning for tomorrow.

4. Essential Skills for an Entirely New Era in Networking. Software-defined automation (SDA) is poised to play an important role in the careers of today’s IT professionals, as well as for IT professionals of the future. Next-level network automation will free users to take on new challenges, achieve their business goals, and stand out in the digital world. In fact, networking professionals will be even more in demand as millions of apps and billions of users connect with each other in the IoT.

5. Video in the Classroom? The possibilities are endless. Located on the Hudson River, Troy, N.Y., is home to some very imaginative educators and students. They’re using video to open a “window to the world” and seeing amazing results.

And, because I’m a fan of even numbers, here’s a bonus: my favorite blog from 2017.

6. Why Cisco? A Commitment to Education—and to Making a Difference. I live in New Hampshire, the state with the lowest poverty rate in the nation, yet in my small city alone, hundreds of children are food insecure, meaning they don’t always know when they will eat their next meal. I am fortunate in so many ways. My children will never be hungry, and I have time to volunteer for End 68 Hours of Hunger, which helps me ensure that the few children I can touch aren’t hungry either. I also work for Cisco, a company that supports my efforts with paid time to volunteer through the Time2Give program. For me, this is one important answer to the question, Why Cisco?

Happy reading, and happy New Year!


Donna Eason

Global Customer Marketing Writer