Jeff Fifield, Ph.D. is a 21st Century Appreciative Practice Educator who believes in the generative potential of experiential and appreciative learning to empower and build individual and group capacity. A smile, sense of wonder, focus upon purposeful play, challenge, leadership, dialogue, reflection and teamwork are all pillars of the work that he undertakes in his work with youth, colleagues, community groups, NGO’s and the business sector. He has worked during the last 20 years in various capacities (curriculum, administration, teacher, coach) at the American International School of Guatemala (Colegio Maya) in passionate support and development of a quality education befitting expectations and desires for his own child. Supplementing the interaction of personal and professional interests, Jeff has pioneered the use of challenge ropes courses in Guatemala, actively supported the organizations Play for Peace and SERES (Supporting Ecological Resilience and Environmental Sustainability), serving as a country coordinator for the Red Iberoamericana Indagacion Apreciativa (Appreciative Inquiry Spanish-speaking network), while partnering in Empowerment Unlimited to aid people interested in enhancing their leadership potential. Stemming from his service in the Peace Corps, he continues his active involvement in local community service projects.
Jeff completed his doctorate through the Taos-Tilburg University program where he focused on how Appreciative School Leadership might meet the needs of 21st Century Schools. This included the examination of possible applications of Appreciative – Learning, Pedagogy, Organizing, Intelligence, and Governance in schools. Embracing the Springfield College Humanics philosophy and motto of Spirit, Body, & Mind, he earned his Master of Education degree in Teaching and Administration with a special focus on curriculum development. Jeff received his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Vermont for his studies in physical education and community recreation as well as his grounding in the educational philosophy of John Dewey.
In subscribing to the propositions of social construction, Jeff is interested in making use of our words to create our worlds in affirmative value-added actions. As such, conversations in Spanish, English or otherwise – especially those related to creating learning organizations that perform are welcome!