About your admin…

A little background….

I took my first computer class at Wheaton North High School from Mr. Reffett.  The year was 1977 and we learned BASIC.  Our school had a terminal that was tied to a mainframe downstate.  The terminal used tapes…not magnetic tapes, but paper tapes with little holes punched in it…  Each student got a few minutes of actual mainframe time per week, so writing and de-bugging code was done BEFORE running it on the computer…other wise you would have to wait until next week to try it again…

My second computer class was at Wheaton College, where I took a Pascal class my senior year (1981/82).  This was BEFORE the PC, so we used monster floppy disks to store our data.  Fun memories.

While teaching 6th grade at Wheaton Christian Grammar School, I started using various computers: TRS-80, Timex-Sinclair, TI–99-4a, Apple II, Apple IIe, and the ever popular Apple IIgs.  In fact, I even networked 15 gs’ together and had them share a 5 MB hard drive!  I pursued and achieved a Masters in Computer Technology in Education from National Lewis University.

In 1989, I left teaching to start a computer support company, Computer Maintenance Organization.  Along with Todd Beamer, we built the company into a strong contender in the computer maintenance arena and sold it three and a half years later.  Unfortunately, the buyer absconded with all my money and left me with nothing to show for 3 1/2 years of work but a lot of head knowledge–which I will now share with you for free…what a deal!

In 1992, I took a teaching position at Wheaton Christian High School (aka Wheaton Academy) to head up a non-existent computer department.  It was a blast!  I got to purchase, install, troubleshoot, teach, network, develop curriculum, etc.  Being a small Christian school, there wasn’t much money available to use for technology, so my early garbage picking days paid off.  I scrounged, begged, frankensteined, and even occasionally purchased computer equipment to set up the first lab.  By the time I left seven years later, we had three labs, with at least one computer in every classroom, a full network, a T1…a beautiful thing.  During my time at Wheaton Academy, I completed my course work and 3/4 of a dissertation for my PhD in Computer Technology in Education.  Unfortunately, due to a ‘mis-communication’, I was told I would have to redo my dissertation (because it was about technology usage in Christian schools).  Rather than fork over $15,000 a year to redo the work, I quit…I’m not proud of that, but I have a hard time justifying the spending of that money when we are running on empty in other financial areas…oh, well, PhD ABD (All But Dissertation) for life!

After Wheaton Academy, I worked for a Christian publishing company as the senior technology analyst.  Two days before Covid, they let me go after 21 years.  I am now working full time on my computer consulting business which I had been working on the side since I started it in 1998.  I also am an adjunct professor at Wheaton College in the Business department, teaching business majors how to utilize technology within the workplace.

There you have it…I love teaching, I love computers…and I hope through this site I can share some of that excitement with others!

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