Contact

Spring Gillard
info@gardenheart.ca

Many Thanks

5labyrinthMe copyThis is a copy of the acknowledgements in my MA thesis. So many people got me to the finish line.

I would like to thank my supervisor Rob VanWynsberghe for his infinite patience with me as I wrote so very many lengthy versions of every chapter. Despite all the reading he was doing, he also managed to find a lot of paid work for me while I was in school. I am also indebted to my other committee members, Hongxia Shan and Tom Sork, and external examiner Pierre Walter for their patience with my verbosity, their careful readings of my work and their thoughtful feedback. I have been inspired by all of you and your writings. I am especially grateful to all my study participants and my colleagues at the study institution.

Many of my MA course work professors were also very helpful in the early stages of my thesis concept development, including Lesley Andres, Shauna Butterwick, Mona Gleason, Judith Ottoson, Dave Smulders, Pierre Walter, and the amazing dynamic duo, Jeannie Cockell and Joan McArthur-Blair. A special thank you to Hongxia Shan for letting me sit in on some of her courses, and to Amy Metcalfe for allowing me to audit her data analysis course. Jo-Anne Naslund in the Faculty of Education library was extremely helpful to me on many occasions. A great big thank you to Shauna Butterwick who supervised my self-directed course, gave me very concrete feedback, and was ever so quick to reply to any and all emails, no matter the topic.

I would also like to thank Shauna and Mark Edwards for hiring me as the community engagement coordinator for the Faculty of Education. There, I had the privilege of working on an amazing project with a very talented team (see Storying with Our Communities). Thank you Mark for always emphasizing that school came first. Thank you to my department, Educational Studies, for presenting me with the 2014 Gordon Selman Award. It meant the world to me to be acknowledged for making a contribution to the field of adult education.

A number of other scholars got me through difficult times. My correspondence with Fritjof Capra was a sustaining source of inspiration. Judith Ottoson urged me on at many points in the process, encouraging me to “own the language” of application. Alice Kolb was very generous with her time, answering many of my questions on Kolb’s (1984) experiential learning theory. Christine Blackmore, Tara Fenwick, Penelope Hawe and Stephen Sterling helped me navigate and critique the many streams of systems theory. Barbara McMillan introduced me to some essential works on social network theory. Stephen Ruppenthal answered some critical questions on Buddhist theory.

I made a lot of new friends at school who also kept me motivated; thank you especially to my buddies Linda, Tim, Chrissie, Kerry and Mali. A special thank you to Caitlin Davis for her brilliant work on the graphic side of my thesis and defence presentation. A big hug to my work colleagues at the UBC Learning Exchange for their encouragement and patience with my utter exhaustion and at times diminished brainpower. Eternal gratitude to my spiritual teacher, Eknath Easwaran, whose teachings and writings course through my life and this thesis. Finally, deepest thanks to my treasured family and friends for supporting me in so many ways through this rather unexpected return to school. I assure you all, we are re-entering ordinary time.

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