Carmella Maria Rodriguez Owner/Instructional Designer/Digital Storytelling Facilitator, nDigiDreams, LLC Practitioner

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Carmella Maria Rodriguez Owner/Instructional Designer/Digital Storytelling Facilitator, nDigiDreams, LLC Practitioner Profile by Weaam Almuzain Introduction: little about herself life: Carmella is from New Mexico and grew up in a small village called Nambé. It means “People of the grounded Earth” in the Tewa Native American language. Her entire childhood was spent in foster homes until the age of 17. She became an emancipated minor and left her second home before she graduated from high school.
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    Introduction: little about herself life: Carmella is from New Mexico and grew up in a small village called Nambé. It means “People of the grounded Earth” in the Tewa Native American language. Her entire childhood was spent in foster homes until the age of 17. She became anemancipated minor and left her second home before she graduated from high school. Shebought her first car for $300, had to learn how to drive overnight, and had to travel over 22 miles one-way every day to get to school so she could graduate. From her website” My inspiration comes from independence. In my youth I didn’t realize the importance of what I was experiencing or what I was learning. I enjoyed the colors of day and the temperature of night. This is where I laughed and where I played. I identify with simplicity, truth, and balance. If we take, we must give; if we give, we must receive. And, we always give thanks for what is.” (http://ilt.ndigidreams.com/reflection.html)  If she had to choose three words that describe herself they would be curious,compassionate and concerned. Her curiosity has created an innate desire inside herself to keep learning. Her experience in the foster care system contributes to her compassion for the world we live in and the people that share it with us. Carmella has an honest concern to help reduce health disparities for rural and underserved communitiesdeveloping health media literacy tools. Dialogue: 1. I want to know what is your job? what exactly you work in? and why you chose this job?  During the ILT program I created a company called nDigiDreams. It’s a mobileinstructional design consulting company that I operate out of Santa Fe, New Mexico and Tucson, Arizona. As I entered the ILT program I realized that video could have a great impact in learning because of the video production and multimedia work I had done inthe past, the Internet, new developments in technology, and the affordability to most consumers. Carmella Maria Rodriguez Owner/Instructional Designer/DigitalStorytelling Facilitator, nDigiDreams,LLCPractitioner Profile by Weaam Almuzain  Currently, I conduct digital storytelling workshops with a focus on public health,education, policy, and cultural preservation. Our cultures, identities, histories and  stories hold enormous strength and beauty. I seek to empower indigenous individualsand communities with participatory media techniques and tools to realize optimal healthand wellness. I don’t refer to this as a job, I refer to this as my life’s mission. I have so much fun and  I’m able to see instantaneous positive outcomes. If we listen to ourselves, we are our best doctors. Digital storytelling helps people journey through a reflective moment in their lives where they feel empowered to tell their story. In that process they experience a sort of healing and then afterwards; they start spreading the healing to family members,communities, tribal councils, and health care providers. Digital storytelling has brought an opportunity to expand into research, to go from practice-to-science instead of science-to-practice. I’m observing an urgency to curve theupswing of disease because we have communities, languages, and cultures that arebecoming extinct. 2.How does your background history affect you to be an expert in learning technology?  Is there really one true expert in learning technology? In my opinion it’s a collective of  people that can create methods and tools that are effective. My personal and professional backgrounds have both contributed to my skills and ability to be a successful facilitator. It not only takes skills but compassion and understanding of the person you are trying toteach. I carry around an imaginary brown leather saddlebag. It’s a bag that contains all mylife’s experiences and skills I have earned through living and through education both onthe field and off the field. The bag is always full and always has room for more. 3.What is your main goal as a professional in learning technology?  I’m currently creating a 20-year plan to work with indigenous peoples around the world to improve health and wellness using digital storytelling and other participatory mediatechniques and tools. This will involve face-to-face workshops at the location of thecommunity and on-line. 4.What are the most popular problems that faces people using new media in technology?  I can only speak from my experience teaching workshops. Students that have participated in my workshops have been from the ages 15 to over 80. In some instances the studentsover 80 have needed extra teacher time because they didn’t have a lot of experience withtechnology. Elders finish their movies before the younger generation because the younger students spend too much time surfing the Internet looking for photos. Most  problems that have occurred have been with the hardware or software, mostly software. In some indigenous communities there is not enough money for them to afford technology. 5.Can you explain to me (briefly) the steps to become an ILT professional?  Keep up with the trends and how they relate on a broader scale. Always update your    skills. Learn more about your students and their learning styles. Have respect for your colleagues, mentors, and students. 6.How does ILT program developed you in your work? The ILT program really helped me focus on my professional life and gave me skills to becompetitive in the Information and Learning Technology market. 7.What advice can you give to those who are new in this field? Work hard during the program, follow your dreams and always do what you love. 8.How can you help people become more familiar with the technology and not be afraid touse it ?  Introduce them to the subject matter first not the technology. Make sure when they start using the technology they are having fun and are not frustrated. Have patience teaching them. Conclusion: Carmella and me couldn’t meet face to face . We had a good conversation through email.We talked about ourselves and my country. We expressed our view of ILT program and how that will bring us to be ILT technologist.She was very useful for me. I learned a lot from her interview. Her Struggling to achieveher own company beside the other job. I was surprised of how many projects she createthrough her study and work in the same time. Unfortunately, there were nomuch time to have long conversation about her experience in true lifeinstead of study. But I really hope to meet her as soon as we can. Sheis a really wonderful women to talk with.
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