|Rob joined the Grand Canyon University team as an adjunct faculty member shortly after finishing his Master of Science degree. He teaches a variety of fire administration and emergency management related courses both at the graduate and undergraduate levels.
Rob lives in Connecticut with his wife Liz and their two children. He brings with him 25 years of fire service and emergency management experience and currently serves the Middletown, Connecticut Fire Department as the Deputy Fire Chief. His background in command and control and hazardous materials response earned him an accommodation for the 2010 Kleen Energy Explosion and a department citation for commanding the response to a hydrofluoric acid release in 2011.
|Rob is active in many professional and community organizations and currently serves as the President of the Middlesex County Fire Chief's Association. He is the Past Secretary for the Kiwanis Club of Middletown and serves on the Board of Advisors for the Salvation Army of Middletown.
In 2007, Rob was appointed to the Validation Committee for the International Fire Service Training Association (IFSTA) and has served on both the Strategy and Tactics to Structural Firefighting Committee and the Chief Fire Officer Committee. Rob has just finished writing IFSTA's Hazardous Materials Technician Manual which will be published in January, 2013.
How has facilitating online courses at GCU helped you find your purpose?
Having completed two degrees in the online format though Grand Canyon, I loved the experience and the GCU faculty and staff I had met along the way. I wanted to continue my relationship with the University and GCU has helped me reach many people and expose them to the real life lessons that I have learned from.
What is one effective teaching strategy you use in your online classes?
The discussion questions are a big part of the online educational process. Many students in traditional education can sit in the back of a classroom, take the exam and move on. In the online format, participation counts for a good part of the grade, but the initial questions are not enough. I like to make my students dive deeper into the discussions by asking pointed follow-up questions that may include examples of what I have learned over my years of service. By the end of the week, I can be sure the information has been understood by the student and they are prepared for the upcoming assignments.
What is a GCU online student success story you can share?
I had the privilege to meet a student who has done wonderful things for emergency services in her community. She was working on her Master of Science Degree for her Emergency Management Field, but had been affected by a severe medical condition. Because of the size of the classes, I was able to work with her on an individual basis to make sure that she completed all of her assignments and requirements. In a traditional program, she would have probably fallen behind and maybe even out of the program. While it was a struggle for her, she persisted and I had the pleasure of having her in the final class of the degree program.