Connecting: The Reasons to Return to School

About a month ago I decided to take on a side project at my school (like I wasn’t busy enough already!!!). I decided to use media to attempt to connect with new students at my school as well as members of our district in general as to, “Why should adult students return to school?” I created a movie, modeled after Michael Wesch’s, “A Vision of Students Today“, which showcases the staff at my centre, and then many students at our centre, who answer two questions, ‘Why are you here?’, and ‘What do you like about CALC [the Cowichan Adult Learning Centre]?’ What I received in response to these questions was very moving. Students really opened up and shared what I felt was quite personal at times…

Since it’s screening last Friday, the movie has been passed around to all of the principals and vice principals in my school district (not my doing!). I have received emails from our superintendent and from our School Board trustee, Mike McKay. I didn’t see that coming.

One message that has been reinforced by this course is that the media available today can be used to create messages that are powerful and spread so quickly it is difficult to comprehend at times. Perhaps more importantly, the use of digital medias, and the change to the visual, has helped me to connect with my students in new ways that are powerful.

Mel Burgess

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