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'I always tried to focus on problems, not things' says Tom Reeves

  |   Kristen B. Morales   |   Permalink   |   Alumni

A look at Tom Reeves' passport might lead you to believe the retired instructional technology professor is doing nothing in retirement but globetrotting.

Not exactly.

There are stamps from Africa, Australia, Europe, South America, and the Middle East and he and his wife, Trisha, a professor of social work at UGA, do a good bit of personal traveling. But Reeves is also often invited to speak at conferences about "massive open online courses" and innovative ways to enhance undergraduate education. Reeves is also still a prolific writer, writing two books and numerous articles since retiring in 2010.

But retirement allows Reeves to choose projects for which he has a passion, especially those that involve helping others who are disenfranchised or disadvantaged. "I want to do more work in developing countries," says Reeves, who also feels a pull to give back in areas such as extending educational opportunities for those who are incarcerated or collaborating with colleagues at the World Health Organization to improve public health.

"One of the themes of my educational technology career was I always tried to focus on problems, not things," he says. "There is a tendency in my field to focus on the latest things such as virtual reality or 3-D printers ... but when these so-called 'solutions' are thrown over the walls of classrooms, the problems persist."

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