Over the years, technology and new ways of sharing and exchanging knowledge kept CFAME’s programs innovative and relevant. It has been exciting to look back at what we have accomplished, but it is even more rewarding to look forward to new on-line/blended learning possibilities that are waiting for us in the future.” Morven Fitzgerald
Morven Fitzgerald, Integrated Learning Coordinator for the Masters of Information Management and Master of Public Administration Management programs, was there from (nearly) the beginning of the MBA(FS). From its genesis to present day, Morven has been a witness to the remarkable transformations that have occurred at the Centre for Advanced Management Education (CFAME) within the short time-frame of 20 years.
I have been with CFAME since 1999,” Morven recalled in a recent FaceTime interview. “It seems so very long ago! But it all comes back with a fresh perspective, especially as we celebrate the 20th anniversary of the MBA(FS) program. I tended to work in the background to facilitate and coordinate student activities and requests. I did not travel as much as Michelle; instead, I was engaged in creating and shipping intensive materials, plus receiving assignments by fax and getting them returned to students and support for whomever needed whatever.
Looking back, what we accomplished was remarkable. Delivery was through a formal web board that today we would call a “blog” (long before blogging was a term). Lesson notes were created to fill the gap created by no formal lectures in a classroom. Any electronic documentation was attached to the blog and viewable by all within the course. Private communication necessitated the use of external email. Assignments were returned by fax. As outdated as this sounds, it was well ahead of its time all those years ago.
In 1999, while I was engaged with the MBA(FS) students, in another part of the building, the Master of Public Administration (Management) students attended school every other Friday afternoon and Saturday morning. There was a two-week hiatus between classes for assignments and hand-ins, readings and research. There was a 3-hour exam at the end of each course. Unlike the MBA(FS) program there were no formal “lesson notes.” The sole means of communication at that time was email; the only classroom equipment were whiteboards and projectors (when they worked, if they were there). The on-campus MPA moved under the CFAME umbrella. With the final cohort of students due to graduate in a couple of years, new means of delivering the program were being explored in order to reach a larger, more diverse, audience. WebCT, a learning management system (LMS) software application for the delivery of on-line/blended education, was the next iteration in technology.
I was selected to bring the Master of Public Administration(M) program online with WebCT. Shortly thereafter, I moved the MBA(FS) program onto the same system as it had tested so well with MPA(M). The Master of Information Management was a natural addition to CFAME’s program.
The Centre for Advanced Management Education is known to respond to the ever-changing business environment by offering degree programs specific to the sector and the audience it will serve. In addition to the MBA(FS), professionals have the choice of an MBA that specializes in Leadership, Master of Public Administration (Management) and Master of Information Management.
Over the years, technology and new ways of sharing and exchanging knowledge kept CFAME’s programs innovative and relevant. It has been exciting to look back at what we have accomplished, but it is even more rewarding to look forward to new on-line/blended learning possibilities that are waiting for us in the future.