Category Packback Ambassadors

Meet Our Ambassador: Robert Ridge

Robert Ridge is an ambitious student from University of Tennessee. His goal is to work in finance after earning a Masters’ degree in Accounting along with becoming a CPA. He’s also extremely interested in technology and physics. In his spare time, he loves working with electrical wiring and programming using devices such as the Arduino Uno.

With a wide range of interest, Robert has grown to be a curious individual and he has been truly enjoyed participating in his Packback community. When hearing that his class would be using Packback this semester, he was skeptical because he knew it would be hard to curate and screen content while still allowing for open and constructive discussion. However, he has been more than impressed with the quality of the moderators.

The content has remained informative and constructive. Packback seems to be a service I can really get behind and support for other classes. It has brought a better sense of community to what is otherwise a very large lecture.

Robert became a Curiosity Ambassador in Fall 2016 and he aims to introduce Packback to more professors at the University of Tennessee.

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Meet Our Ambassador: Tina Pliagas

Tina is a Marketing major student at University of Tennessee at Knoxville. Her career plan involves coupling her major with something that has largely defined her education and personal life: music education and performance. 

Tina is a proud piccolo player with the University of Tennessee Pride of the Southland Marching Band. Music education has taught her everything from discipline to seeking excellence in everything she does. Marrying the major and passion isn’t always easy, but Tina is determined to follow her dream and the critical thinking skills she learned from Packback has been helping her with it.

In the month and a half that I’ve been introduced to Packback Questions, I feel that I have gotten more out of my class than I ever could with a traditional lecture-and-homework style course.

Packback encourages Tina to continue questioning how the world works because education doesn’t have to be black or white. Every week, her questions and answers become more and more in-depth. Knowing the difference that Packback made for her, Tina believes that other students and professors deserve to know that Packback is a platform that would revolutionize the way they learn and teach. She considers herself as a living proof that this platform can give academics a 180 degree makeover and she seeks to share her story.

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Meet Our Ambassador: Jeremy Cummings

Jeremy is a freshman at the University of Alabama majoring in Physics and Mathematics. His dream is to work with the physics of nuclear fusion development because he has always been fascinated by the promise of limitless clean energy and a single fusion reactor could power a country. In order to make headway in this field, he knows that he needs to work towards an understanding of and curiosity about the natural world. He finds value in Packback and became one of our Curiosity Ambassadors in 2016.

When I started on Packback, I was skeptical. The open question concept sounded great for a philosophy class, but as a physics major, it didn’t seem useful. In just a few weeks of class, I have been proven totally wrong. The questions might be inspired by class, but they extend to topics so much broader and, admittedly, more interesting.

Packback has allowed Jeremy to explore his interests beyond the classroom and he seeks to share his experience with others.

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Meet Our Ambassador: Kirstin Zeiser

Kirstin Zeiser is a student from the University of Alabama, major in Public Relations with a strong interest in the Spanish language and Spanish culture. Kirstin became a Curiosity Ambassador because she personally connected with Packback’s purpose: to be a life-long learner. Her view on education can be summarized with a quote from Casey Neistat, a popular filmmaker. He says “Experience does for the soul what education does for the mind.”

“My education here at The University of Alabama has been unparalleled, but it isn’t just the education that will set me up for success in my field. My experiences outside of the classroom have been just as valuable, if not even more.”

Kirstin’s sense of self is remarkably developed, and she already has a clear idea of where her degree is going to propel her. This, combined with Kirstin’s understanding of the value of a broad education, demonstrates that she has an open and accepting worldview.

Understanding her strong emphasis on education, we asked Kirstin what she thought about Packback; a brand new way to carry out discussion in her class.

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