Village Earth / CSU Online Courses Move to new RamCT Blackboard Starting Summer 2012

New RamCT Blackboard goes live for summer 2012

CSU-Village Earth courses move to the new RamCT Blackboard for all online coursework at the start of the summer term, June 1, 2012.   The current RamCT system will no longer be used for teaching after this date.

We hope that this new platform will be easier for students to access and navigate from all over the world.

Click the links for more information about the Online Community-based Development Certificate Program or to register for upcoming summer courses.

Learn How To Use The New System – It’s Different! 
For previous students in our program that would like to familiarize themselves with changes to the system or for new students looking to get a head start on understanding the course platform check out the Blackboard On Demand Learning Center for Students:  http://ondemand.blackboard.com/students.htm 

Questions?

See the RamCT Help web site

Training Iraq’s Young Leaders

In late July, Village Earth provided two days of curriculum for college age students from Iraq. The diverse set of approximately 20 Iraqi students was selected from all over their country to take part in a summer exchange program.
Colorado State University was one of only two universities chosen to host students. The other was the University of Southern Indiana. The Colorado curriculum focused on civic engagement and social advocacy. Village Earth provided a four-day training on community mobilization and building support through proper framing of your message. The group used this training to generate their Facebook page, Iraqis Will.
Beside increasing cultural understanding within Iraq and between the US and Iraq, the leadership exchange program helped students design action plans for projects that they will implement upon their return to the country. This is the second year that Village Earth has provided training to young Iraqi leaders.

New Course in Disaster Management

In response to our course participants’ interest in disaster management, we have developed a new five-week online course entitled Grassroots Participatory Disaster Management. In light of the many recent natural disasters, we feel this course will help expand our students’ expertise by understanding participatory methods of working in high-stress, disaster situations. Please visit our website to review this and other online training offerings.

Distaster Mitigation Course Now Open

For sometime now, we have been receiving requests to develop new five-week online courses on the topics of disaster mitigation and renewable energy as applied at the village level. We are glad to report that this upcoming session (starting June 4th) we will now be offering “Community-Based Disaster Mitigation.” We expect high enrollment, so enroll early while space remains. Registration closes on May 28th. Please visit our IISD training website to review other online training offerings.

In-Person Trainings for Engineers Without Borders and Others

In an effort to fulfill our mandated role of educating others on the Village Earth Approach to sustainable community-based development, we have recently conducted numerous trainings with Engineers Without Borders (EWB) chapters from around the country. The two-day, in-person courses focus on a number of areas essential to the successful implementation of projects. 

In order to create successful projects, we must ask ourselves, “What is it about a project that makes it successful and sustainable? What structural, social, or even psychological barriers inhibit or prevent individuals and groups from getting involved and working together for change?” In this training we focus on a model for how EWB chapters can fit into the overall process of community change, focusing on the relationship between local partner organizations, EWB Chapter organizations and communities. We explore the concept of appropriate technology as both the “hard” physical technologies, but also the “soft” social-organizational technology that ensures equitable distribution and long-term sustainability. This training draws on the theories and methods of Brazilian educator Paulo Freire, whose work has guided some of the most successful development and education programs around the globe, including the Orangi Pilot Project in Bangladesh, the NAAM movement in Burkina Faso and the Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement in Sri Lanka, among others.

These courses have been very well-received thus far. One student told us, “To put it mildly, this course has changed the way I view myself in the world. I have no doubt that it will affect how I conduct myself as a member of a team and as a leader. I am especially interested to see how it affects my interactions with my existing social groups of work, family, school and friends.”

So far, UC Santa Barbara, University of Illionois Champaign-Urbana, Rutgers University, EWB Northeast Regional Chapters, Colorado Springs Professional EWB Chapter, Princeton, Hope College, University of Michigan and the Colorado State University EWB Chapter have participated in our specialized training. If you are interested in scheduling an EWB training or a specialized training for your group, please contact us by replying to this email.