Ya, that’s the truth… At the end of this year, I’ll be leaving academia and the University of Paderborn and will start working as project manager in an international Paderborn-based company. While I’m looking forward to learn a lot of new things and to having new impressions of how collaborative work can be carried out, I am also a bit sad to leave the environment I worked and lived in the last 8 years.
During my studies at the University of Paderborn, I became student assistant at the Computer Science Education Group of Prof. Magenheim and quickly began to take responsibilities in the teaching activities of the group. In 2007, I became research associate in the group and had the opportunity to start supervising bachelor and master thesis, to develop new courses and to teach in the area of TEL, Social Media, Knowledge Management and E-Learning (and many more topics, see the list). I became the supervisor of several project groups at our group and learned a lot about project management, they dos and don’ts of collaborative software development and agile development techniques.
When my PhD project at the University of Paderborn didn’t went as I hoped for, it were Hendrik Drachsler and Peter Sloep that motivated me to carry on and to finish that PhD. So I became external PhD at the Open Universiteit’s CELSTEC and successfully defended my thesis “Awareness Support for Knowledge Workers in Research Networks” in April 2012 after 18 months of hard work. Hendrik, Peter, I thank you again for being the supervisors you were and for guiding me through the process. It was a gift being able to work with you.
Together with many brilliant minds, I published a lot in the past years and had the opportunity to travel a lot. I met many smart researchers and some of them became friends. Every September, the European Conference on Technology Enhance Learning (EC-TEL) was the meeting point for the smart TEL community and I will certainly miss many of the people involved in making EC-TEL a great conference. It was the EC-TEL conference and my participation in several other EATEL-sponsored events that made me interested in becoming deeper involved in the European TEL community and I decided to run for election for the post of secretary of EATEL in 2011. Ever since my election, I enjoy working for the association and will carry on to work as secretary in the future.
I want to thank all of you that accompanied me throughout the last 8 years, all the colleagues at the University of Paderborn and at CELSTEC. I am grateful for all the students that decided to take my courses, to join my project groups, to write their final theses with me or that worked as students assistants for me. I know that I always brought in new ideas and changed existing plans but you always did your best to deliver great products (“Wolle always brings the cool ideas and I implement them” is something they used to say…). All the products we delivered have been well received, discussed by smart people all over the world and not uncommonly used as benchmark for their new developments. I want you to know that you are AWESOME and the best peers I could imagine. It was a great pleasure and honor being your “boss” and I will surely miss our brainstorming and darts sessions.
They say every new beginning is one beginning’s end. I’m looking forward to the new beginning and hope it will be as fruitful as the last one…