Thomson Receives ComETS Leadership Award

By Vanessa Eisch, Engage Communications
March 07, 2013

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John Thomson, DoIT Instructional Technology Consultant, was recently honored as this year’s recipient of the ComETS (Community of Educational Technology Support) Leadership Award.

Thomson has led the way as a seasoned member of ComETS working on projects such as the Big Learning Event website and the Teaching and Learning Excellence website.

It’s his work on those sites and his humble, “Minnesota nice” attitude that prompted fellow technology consultant, Ron Cramer along with UW-Madison librarian Ian Benton to nominate Thomson for this year’s award.

“John has thought quite a bit about how people communicate with each other at the intersection of teaching, learning and technology. He has looked for ways to use these websites to give a voice to people who are searching for answers to teaching and learning challenges or willing to share solutions. On our campus, where we are so often in our own silos with our approaches, the sites are tremendous spaces for sharing and collaborating,” explains Cramer.

The ComETS Leadership Award recognizes individuals on campus whose “leadership, innovation, or stewardship have made great advances in the field of educational technology at UW Madison”. Award recipients demonstrate innovation in educational technology, free-exchange of ideas, expertise, and resources, as well as advocacy for technology-enhanced pedagogies.

“John leads by example and that is extremely important in a volunteer organization. It's inspiring when you see someone who willingly takes on responsibilities to further the mission of the group. It motivates you to make a greater contribution yourself,” Cramer says.

Thomson is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication researching the intersection between information technology policy and social theory.