Bevil Wooding to receive Caribbean American Heritage Award



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LACNIC honours Wooding with 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award

CAPTION: Bevil Wooding receives the Latin American and Caribbean Internet Addresses Registry 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award while LACNIC Executive Director Raúl Echeberría looks on, at the international LACNIC 21 conference, held from May 4th to 9th in Cancun, Mexico. Photo courtesy: LACNIC

NEWS - The Latin American and Caribbean Internet Addresses Registry (LACNIC) honoured Caribbean-based technology expert and philanthropist Bevil Wooding with its 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award.

Wooding, who wears many hats in his work around the world, is the Chief Knowledge Officer at the international non-profit Congress WBN. He received the award at a special ceremony during the international LACNIC 21 conference, on May 8th in Cancun, Mexico.

Since 2009, LACNIC has presented the award to individuals who have a significant impact on the development of the Internet and the information society throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Wooding, an Internet Strategist and Caribbean Outreach Manager for the US-based research non-profit Packet Clearing House, is globally recognised for his tireless work in improving Internet access and resilience, particularly in developing countries.

Raúl Echeberría, executive director of LACNIC, lauded Wooding's work in the areas of improving Internet connectivity and building capacity in the region.

“His selection as the 2013 Lifetime Achievement Awardee was unanimous,” he said.

Echeberría, LACNIC's chief executive from its inception in Uruguay in 2002, singled out Wooding's work in strengthening Internet infrastructure, particularly in supporting the development of Internet Exchange Points (IXPs) in the Caribbean.

“Wooding has earned the trust and respect of the global community. The community values his dedication, his integrity and his consistency. It is clear his work is his life mission and the region has benefitted enormously as a result.”

He also praised Wooding for his role in designing and spearheading the Caribbean Telecommunications Union’s Caribbean ICT Roadshow, which promotes novel uses of technology across all sectors of society.

In the development of technology solutions and educational resources, Wooding’s involvement has been far-reaching. He is a founding member and chair of the Caribbean Network Operators Group (CaribNOG), a volunteer group which provides a forum for the technical community to exchange ideas and experiences.

He is also founder and Executive Director of BrightPath Foundation, a non-profit organisation focused on technology education solutions for young people and communities across the world. The foundation provides youth-focused mobile app development and digital training programs. In 2012, BrightPath facilitated the development of the Caribbean Examination Council's first-ever digital media syllabus.

In thanking LACNIC for the award, Wooding said that he felt his work is far from done.

“There remain communities to empower, policies to develop, stakeholders to educate, IXPs to deploy, local content to create, and research to conduct on how the Internet and our actions are impacting our region. My commitment is to continue working and to continue believing in the power of the Internet as a driver for development and as a force for good."

His Technology Matters column appears in the weekly Business Guardian magazine.

CXC to record first-ever video-based syllabus orientation

The Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) will make history in Grenada this week with the recording of its first-ever completely video-based syllabus orientation.

The recording is being done for the launch of CXC’s CAPE Digital Media Syllabus and will be facilitated by BrightPath Foundation, a Trinidad-based technology education non-profit. A team of teachers, CXC officers and volunteer digital media specialists will be working together to produce the orientation video.

Telecommunications provider, Columbus Communications has made its CC6 Community Station studio resources available to CXC for the occasion. Rhea Yaw Ching, corporate vice president sales and marketing at Columbus said, “Columbus has been working closely with CXC and BrightPath to ensure the success of this important initiative. A Digital Media Syllabus is an important inclusion in the Caribbean curriculum, and it also supports our large corporate objective of enabling learning through technology.”

A team of teachers, CXC officers and volunteer digital media specialists will be working together to produce the orientation video. Telecommunications provider, Columbus Communications, has made its CC6 Community Station studio resources available to CXC for the occasion. CXC provides primary, secondary and post-secondary examinations and other education services for Caribbean countries.

Registrar and chief executive officer Dr Didacus Jules said the region’s education system needs to be updated to produce graduates with the requisite technology-based skills.

“Emphasis will be placed on project work and active participation to ensure that students have opportunity to develop both practical skills and a solid understanding of how digital media is applied in real-world scenarios,” Bevil Wooding, Congress WBN’s Chief Knowledge Officer and Executive Director of BrightPath Foundation, is coordinating the activity in Grenada.

He explained that the newness of the subject matter has meant that CXC had to turn to technology to accelerate the syllabus roll-out process. A special Accelerated CAPE Digital Media Implementation Strategy has been developed in collaboration with the CXC’s civil-society partner Congress WBN, a Trinidad-based international non-profit organisation.

“We wanted to ensure the same principles and tools highlighted in the Digital Media syllabus were reflected in the approach to implementation,” Wooding said.

In addition to the syllabus orientation video, Wooding and his BrightPath team of volunteers are putting together Caribbean-centric reference texts, digital and physical teaching aids targeted at teachers, students and parents.  Alice Thomas-Martin, a teacher from St Benedict’s College in San Fernando and one of the educators selected by CXC to help create the syllabus, is in Grenada for the recording.

“Using digital means to introduce CAPE Digital Media is a perfect way to kick of this new syllabus. This is truly a step in the right direction. I feel privileged to be part of this milestone moment in Caribbean education. I am excited about introducing this subject to my students. The subject material lends itself to very practical and 'hands on' activities which will make the teaching and learning process very student-centered.”

She added, “The majority of my students are 'digital natives' having grown up surrounded by technology. I know they will be most excited when this launches in September. CXC is exploring the possibility of applying the approach taken for the Digital Media Syllabus other subject areas.