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Contact-new.svg Steve Foerster
Employer:Pioneer University
Occupation:Higher Education Administrator
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Hi, I'm Steve Foerster. From 2003 until 2007 I was Director of Instructional Technology for the Free Curricula Centre, which had the goal of developing textbooks and Moodle courses as open educational resources. In late 2006 I attended the fourth Pan-Commonwealth Forum in Jamaica, and learned about WikiEducator. I became involved with WE at that time. As Wayne Mackintosh says, together we can do so much more.

I see the open education movement as a subset of the free culture movement. As such I was fairly active with iCommons, the most publicly inclusive of the Creative Commons affiliated organizations. I attended the iCommons Summit in Croatia in 2007, and had the opportunity to talk about WikiEducator and meet with many like-minded people. I believe that we who do OERs should find as many opportunities as possible to cooperate with other branches of the free culture movement, especially the Open Access/Access to Knowledge movement, with which we have academia in common.

I was part of WikiEducator's interim International Advisory Board, and in 2008 was elected to the first Community Council, so if you have any comments or suggestions about us, please let me know by email. In addition, when I can, I promote WikiEducator through our Ambassadors program. Here's my personal record.

As a just-for-fun WikiEducator activity, in July 2008 Minhaaj ur Rehman and I started the User Page Expo, where once per month the coveted Featured User Page award is bestowed on someone who has done something interesting with their user page. We've since handed it off to others, but as ever, nominations are always welcome! And many thanks to Ramesh, Nellie, and the WE community for noting this user page for June 2014!

Personal and Professional Notes

On a personal note, I have four wonderful children who throughout most of 2024 will range in age from nineteen to twenty-seven.

While I'd love to spend all my time with my family or researching, developing, and promoting OERs, alas, there are bills to pay. I spent ten years working for colleges and universities in various staff and administrative capacities, usually involving distance learning, and then as an Education Specialist for MicroStrategy, a large business intelligence firm founded by Michael Saylor, whose other major project, the Saylor Academy, produces online courses and textbooks as OERs. I've also edited a blog called eLearners News and developed and taught online IT and business courses for Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe Community College, located in the beautiful north woods of the U.S. state of Wisconsin. Many institutions where I've worked and taught have used Moodle as their learning management system, and I've come to favor that platform not just because it's open source, but also because it's just generally well designed.

Now, however, I'm part of a group establishing Pioneer University, which is based in Lagos, Nigeria and is seeking NUC approval to make higher education more accessible to Nigerians through ODL. Of interest to WikiEducators, Pioneer University is making great use of openly licensed textbooks. In fact, the project can trace its lineage back to the work of the Free Curricula Centre, which has returned to WikiEducator as a platform for course development.

To learn more about me, feel free to visit my personal web site.