Fulbright scholar explores higher ed

Mark Harris was a mid-career educator at Southbank Institute of Technology in Australia when he decided to “have a go” that put him on track to retrain faculty instructors in new techniques for vocational teaching.

Mark Harris

March Harris

He’s now a visiting Fulbright Scholar at SUNY Oswego, having another go: taking his research and his ideas international.

“As a Fulbright Scholar, you’re in a group of individuals where you are completely humbled,” said Harris. “But really the tradition of the Fulbright is so rich in American history, there’s a responsibility that comes with that.”

His challenge is tackling an issue that has emerged in both nations: How do you deal with the loss of people and knowledge in an era of aging workforces, when public colleges and universities have less money yet more need to prepare teachers and students for new jobs in a new economy?

It sounds daunting, but Harris exudes enthusiasm as he talks about his Fulbright research here and his work at home.

“We’re moving away from the traditional four walls, the didactic model,” Harris said. “It’s more problem-based, work-based learning in an open-style room, with a world of technological resources at hand.”

— Jeff Rea ’71

 

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