Returning to Athens, Georgia

Sebastian Fiedler In July I managed to re-vist Athens, Georgia, where I worked and studied at The University of Georgia from August 1998 to May 2000. It was a great opportunity for an occasional “walk down memory lane”. I was able to spend a few days with Chad Galloway, one of my trusted sources of diversion and entertainment in and outside of the Learning Performance Support Lab… back in the days. It sometimes felt like I had never left.

The UGA campus was as beautifully landscaped and well maintained as ever. And the climate was as hot and sticky as it usually gets in the deep South in the middle of summer. For my Baltic travel companion, Terje, this was surely a new and somewhat challenging experience…

It is still amazing how much night-life is packed into the rather small downtown area of Athens, GA. This hasn’t changed a bit… as it seems. Though it was “slow season” right at the end of summer session the live music scene felt alive and kicking. That was always one of the best feature of nocturnal Athens for me.

ICALT2011 was hosted in the Georgia Center on South Campus. We presented our paper “Expanding the concept of learner control in higher education: consequences for intervention design” there and I managed to catch up with Lloyd Rieber and Janette Hill. I also got to know Ike Choi who had joined the Instructional Technology faculty at the UGA right after I had left. I also walked over to beloved Aderhold Hall (or Aderhold Hell… as it was sometimes called)… but offices looked pretty much deserted and I could not find anyone there.

Terje on the other hand managed to find two Estonian researchers at the conference: Mario Mäeots and Heilo Altin from the University of Tartu. They turned out to be a very enjoyable company on various tours in and around town during the conference days.

All and all it was really nice to touch base with the UGA folks… and float around campus and town after all these years.

[Sebastian Fiedler]

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