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Tis the season to reflect and give thanks, and I am feeling so fortunate with my lot in life this November that I’m doing a post each week to give shout outs to those who helped get me here. If you’ve just looked at your calendar, you’ll know that I almost missed my final week…but it’s the 30th, and that still counts!

Though I enjoy all of KPC’s evaluation projects, when I look back over the past few years, it is the research projects that I have loved the most. While evaluation and research projects can look quite similar from the outside, research projects feel different from the inside – they allow me to join forces with collaborators who think differently and work differently and have different areas of expertise to answer the research questions that we care about the most.

  • I am grateful to the WeatherBlur research team, and especially Christine Bevc and  Ruth Kermish-Allen. It’s the end of an era, y’all. Thanks to Ruth and Christine for years of piggy-backing areas of expertise to help understand the ways that kids and teachers and scientists work together online to create and complete citizen science projects. Thanks too to Scott, Alex, and Sue for the huge roles you played on this project and for your contributions to the research. I’ll miss you guys!
  • I am grateful to my EvalFest colleagues, Todd Boyette and Katherine Nielsen. We hit our stride this year, with tons of presentations and manuscripts submitted, and with exciting new work planned for the final year of the project. Thank you for pushing my thinking and for taking the time to figure out how to divide and conquer together. It is an honor to lead the EvalFest community of practice with the two of you!
  • I am grateful to the Streamlining Embedded Assessment team, for years of collaboration and kinship with Rachel Becker-Klein and Cat Sylinski, and for new partnerships with Tina Phillips and Andrea Wiggins.  Thanks for a fantastic year of shared leadership and thinking. See most of you next week!

My hope is that this series of posts has put a smile on the faces of those who were mentioned directly, and that they might even also inspire others. It’s easy to get bogged down in the negative these days, but we don’t have to. Pay it forward people!!