The inaugural Virtual Learning Awards have acknowledged some of New Zealand’s top contributors to the elearning community.
Presented by the Associate Minister of Education the Hon. Nikki Kaye, the Awards are in recognition of high performance, a significant and unique contribution to online learning, and excellence in the field of learning through digital technology.
The winners were announced on the 15th of April 2014 at the Virtual Learning Network Community (VLNC) Annual General Meeting in Wellington. The Awards honoured exceptional individuals within the virtual learning community, and also highlighted aspects of the outstanding work undertaken by the community as a whole.
The event was sponsored by Asnet Technologies, and attended by senior management and several staff members. Asnet Technologies have been a part of the journey alongside the VLNC, and also provided support to enable members of the community and families from around the country to attend both the meeting and the awards ceremony.
During the Awards, Kaye spoke of the work of the sector, and the vision and passion that is essential in the ongoing efforts towards a brighter future for education in New Zealand.
The Virtual Learning Award recipients are:
Virtual Learning Award for Innovation – Rachel Roberts for her work in the development of the VLN Primary within the VLNC, her work as the go-to for participants of the VLN Primary and the We-Learn website, and her guidance, management and advocacy for the VLN Primary.
Virtual Learning Award for Enabling Elearning - Madeline Campbell for her work in the field of eteaching, where she has embraced the potential of the medium with unmatched commitment and enthusiasm. She is proactive in sharing her work across the VLNC, and is highly regarded as an educator amongst her colleagues.
Virtual Learning Award for Leadership - Carolyn Alexander-Bennet for her passion and dedication for the VLNC whanau, for online learning opportunities and maximising them for both rural and urban education communities. She exhibits admirable leadership qualities and advocates for the VLNC on many working groups and committees, as well as maintaining an organisational role.
Virtual Learning Award for Building Capacity - Jo-Anne Stuart for her professionalism and organisation skills in her role as E-Dean, and her advocacy for the benefits of the VLNC as a vehicle for ensuring students get the best of the opportunities that are available. She is credited with the growth in the number of students accessing courses through the VLN, and development and support for the elearning student cohort.
Virtual Learning Award for Achievement - Kanyakon Kosinanonth (Maija) for her achievements as an exceptional, self-motivated and conscientious student. With Thai as her first language, Kanyakon has demonstrated incredible resilience to study multiple subjects via video conferencing in a second language, with great achievements. She also provides inspiration to others.
Virtual Learning Award for Achievement - Meghan Scanlan for her achievements as an exemplary student in both studies and sports, for her engagement in the school culture and being a young leader. She is very highly regarded in her school and community.