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SLIS Students Go Beyond Blackboard

Today’s era of online learning allows students from far away places to participate in programs located within another state.  It’s quite common to never come face-to-face with your peers or Instructors.  Craving more interaction, students of this summer’s 5020: Foundations of Library & Information Science course organized two off campus meets and greets.  In an effort to be more inclusive, each event was scheduled in a different part of the Tampa Bay area.

The first meeting took place on Saturday, June 12, in historic Ybor City.  The students discussed classes and Instructors, and as graduate student Barbara Gaddy summarized it as “the usual finding-out-what-we-have-in-common gossip.”

In attendance were (from left to right): Chirstina Harduvel, Gillian Moore, Sylvia Martinez, Sotos “George” Djiovanis, Douglas “Reid” Pierce and Barbara Gaddy.

They realized they enjoyed the experience so much that a second event was set up for Saturday, June 26 in Gulfport and included a tour of the local public library.

In attendance were (from left to right): Douglas “Reid” Pierce, Rohana Chomick and Barbara Gaddy.

According to Barbara Gaddy, who was instrumental in planning the second meet-up, “Unlike the blended meetings, those unstructured face-to-face meetings are great for creating bonds between classmates.  It is really nice to be able to put a name with a face in an non-school environment.  It makes the discussions boards far easier because you know a little about some of the people you are addressing, so conversations are more relaxed.”

“It was really nice getting some face time with my classmates. While online classes are convenient, you start to miss the human element,” stated Douglas “Reid” Pierce, who is currently in the process of organizing a third event taking place at the end of the semester.



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