Bob McDonald, newly appointed Education Advisor for the new Education Team at Moodle HQ, held his first leadership position at the Sales and Training team at Moodlerooms back in 2006. As his career in marketing evolved with similar roles in open source HTML video company Kaltura as Sales Director in Higher Education, Moodle competitor D2L (Senior Account Manager) and VideoBlocks stock service (Director of Enterprise Services), his passion for learning continued, if it didn’t get stronger.
“In my adult life, I have been really fortunate to have worked with remarkable educators and visionary thinkers,” McDonald says. A brief meeting with Martin Dougiamas early in his career turned into a Vygotsky appreciation exchange. It would be one of the reasons that led him appreciate open source, EdTech, and Moodle.
Now in his recently appointed position of Moodle Learn Manager, he’s keen to bring his understanding of people from a decade in sales and marketing, into the way they learn. But the opposite is also true: McDonald started his career as a teacher, a formative period of “sales, training and client relations skills.”
On one hand, getting young minds excited about Sumerian culture is a “buy in” challenge to some extent. On the other hand, mutual knowledge and appreciation for the “cool Sumerians,” or any other body of knowledge, is a great way to bond.
As to his future in the understanding of people as both learners and customers, McDonald is cautious. “Borrowing a saying from an English football coach, ‘I don’t make predictions, and I never will.’” In any case, he is expected to work closely with Moodle Partners, consolidate Moodle’s official education and certification offerings, and embrace open source technology, community, and ideas as the Education Team furthers Moodle’s mission.