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About Dave Sampson

Social Climber

Dave Sampson started his experience as an informal educator through Scouts Canada as a summer camp councilor. Although he did not know it a the time, this was the beginning of a rewarding career as an experiential educator and wilderness guide.

Throughout his 10 year career as an experiential educator he led wilderness trips for youth and adults alike. Many of these trips were throughout the backcountry of Ontario, Canada. Some of his instruction would also occur at summer camps, wilderness retreats, provincial parks and even in an urban context with a youth urban moutain biking program. Whether in a canoe, on a rock wall or hiking on trails Dave was always looking for those precious teachable moments.

Now, working as a technology analyst with Natural Resources Canada, Dave often finds himself in an instructor type role. Whether it is introducing public servants how to use their internal Wiki or advising how to implement Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) solutions to make their projects a success, Dave is always at home providing the resources for others to continue their learning.

After being removed from the outdoor experiential education community for a few years, Dave felt a pull back to the outdoors and instruction. As a part time winter project, Dave co-founded and is now the lead instructor of Freeheelers United (FHU). FHU offers instruction in the sport of Telemark Skiing.

Computers for Communities, Ottawa

Currently, Dave is doing his part to rally community support in bridging the digital divide in Ottawa Ontario. As Executive Director of Computers for Communities (C4C) he works closely with volunteers who wish to develop new computer technology skills, through regular hands-on computer refurbishing programs, whereby volunteers learn many new skills - and many newcomers to Canada gain valuable 'Canadian experience'.

The Computer Refurbishing program allows untrained or knowledgeable volunteers to learn about computer hardware and software. After 24 hours of service, a volunteer may decide to put those hours towards earning a computer of their own. This allows those individuals who may face barriers to accessing computers to earn their own while developing new skills.

Computers for communities embraces the philosophy of experiential education through constructive play and non-directed self-exploration. May people fear the computer because of the unknowns of its inner workings. By allowing volunteers to explore, dismantle and re-assemble hardware it helps to de mistify the components that make up a computer. Through the process of data destruction, software installation and system configuration, users learn that a computer (hardware) is distinct from the operating system and the applications (software) we use daily.

Learn more about Computers for Communities through the main website or our WikiEducator page .

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