At the very beginning of the internship period, I was called into a room with the deputy director of UNESCO Bangkok and my manager to discuss UNESCO’s submission to an Environmental Studies MOOC. A MOOC is a Massive Open Online Course, which is basically a course that one can take over the Internet. MOOCs herald themselves as the dawn of a new era in higher education democratization where anyone anywhere can receive the quality instruction locked within an elite university. Although that hasn’t been the case, and we aren’t all getting online degrees from Harvard, MOOCs are making an impact in the distribution of quality instruction into areas where none is available. MOOCs have wonderful success stories in Mongolia where aspiring adults can, and yes they can, learn advanced topics from the top professors in the field online.
UNESCO Bangkok was going to submit a video to Curtin Univerisity’s Environmental Studies MOOC. Curtin U. is one of Australia’s most internationalized universities, with a campus in Malaysia and networking throughout Asia. Clearly Curtin has some influence with UNESCO as well. I was assigned to join the knowledge sharing unit to hunt down “crisp data”, put together a compelling and politically sound script, record the video with the director, and edit it. Writing the script and going through iteration after iteration of feedback was fun and collaborative. It was also my first experience in a cross-departmental project.
When it came to filming and editing the video, it was a one-man show. I was happy to use my hobby in video editing to help UNESCO in its creative communications. It was also a great opportunity for me to work directly with the director of UNESCO and for him to learn my name. He would later call me by name in front of a crowd of 200 people. I was touched to be remembered. The MOOC itself is now over and the students have completed the course.
It turns out that many of my inputs to UNESCO have been in creative communications. I turned out to be an asset for them in videography, graphic design, and writing. I will just attach the video here for those who might be interested to watch it.