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The 2016 Trident Education Conference - Move Fast and Shake Things

- Monday, August 08, 2016

Over the last 8 years, I’ve been to 7 Trident Education Conferences as a delegate, and it was the one non-negotiable in my PL budget for myself and my Head of Technical Services, Greg Bell. The only one I’ve missed was when it clashed with a National Hockey tournament.

This year was a little different as over the last 12 months things have certainly moved fast for me… and for the first time, 2016 saw me on the other side of the conference, working within the talented team at Trident that plan and organise what is well regarded as the premiere conference for IT decision makers.

This year’s theme was “Move Fast and Shake Things”, a topic that has proved to be very apt for most of the delegates, and as I spent time talking to people over the three days of the event, I heard many stories of how our schools are moving fast, being moved, shaking things up, or being shaken!

Try as I might, I’m not going to be able to relate to you just what makes this conference such a key event on the calendar of so many IT Managers and Directors; some say it’s the outstanding presentations, the valuable networking, the way delegates are always challenged to think outside the box… some say it’s just “the vibe”!

Rather than try to summarise the whole conference, I’ve picked out my top 5 Conference Highlights, a very difficult thing to do with such an outstanding program, but here they are:

Top 5 Highlights - 2016 Trident Education Conference

#5 Presentations from our delegates, Ben Ryder, Andrew Stuart, Luke Turner and Rob Flavell

Covering topics from innovation, audits, penetration testing and trends in teaching and learning, our delegates always deliver riveting stories and examples of IT within their Schools. This year was no exception, and the conversation and questions that resulted from these key presentations were fantastic! Massive thanks to them all for agreeing to share their stories!

#4 Ray Fleming – “Wearable Technology, the Internet of Things and the Future”

When it comes to presentations that captivate, entertain and inform, Ray is a master! This year he focussed on connected everything, from cows to kids to classrooms and what the Internet of Things could mean to the way we work, learn and live. As always, Ray’s concepts were backed with facts and stats and real world examples of how a wide range of sectors are “Moving fast and shaking things!”

#3 6x5 Well Shaken!

Challenging six delegates to present to the conference for 5 minutes each on how they have “moved fast” or “Shaken things” or both was bound to prove two things: that 5 minutes is nowhere enough time, and that our Schools are full of amazing innovation!
We heard from:

  • Lucy Barrow, eLearning Developer at the City of Ballarat, who offered a unique, post-school perspective on how important it is to shake things in education.
  • Brett Graham, Head of Technology and Innovation at Flinders Christian Community College spoke about “Confluence” and how it’s shaking up IT support and delivering information directly to staff and students.
  • Steven Archibald, Information, Communication and Technology Manager at Carey Grammar presented about the amazing new facility at Carey and how that is shaking traditional IT and Education.
  • Chris Topp, Director of IT at Luther College presented the Luther College App, and how this innovative solution is keeping parents and students informed.
  • Diana Murase, ICT Manager at Kardinia International College talked about the challenges of self-examination and reflection that changes in leadership can produce.
  • Janet Smith, Director of Technology at MLC on how data is being used at MLC to better inform their school community.

#2 Tour of the Geelong Library and Heritage Centre.

The Trident Education Conference for 2016 “Move Fast and Shake Things” commenced with a tour of the new Geelong Library and Heritage Centre. Lead by the Manager of Digital Services, Gerrard Daniels, the conference delegates were treated to a special tour of the facilities from top to bottom of the new centre. From the top most floor with panoramic views of Geelong with its cutting-edge AV infrastructure; through the dedicated Heritage Centre space with technology to assist researchers through to the many and varied library spaces; the tour identified a wide range of integrated technology that would be more than applicable in schools.
A wonderful space that was the perfect exciting and thought-provoking start to the Trident Conference for 2016.

#1 Keynote, Dr Simon Eassom– “Cognitive Computing and the Future of Education: From Hype to Insight”

Topping out my top 5 would have to be the opening keynote of the 2016 conference by Dr Simon Eassom. His presentation focussed on digital transformation and how the world and therefore education, is moving fast. This insightful presentation challenged our delegate’s perception on how technology is impacting the future of education and work and the opportunities it presents for re-thinking how we educate and what we’re educating for. His keynote left many delegates with more questions than answers, and remained the topic of conversation throughout the rest of the conference!

And I could go on… the spectacular Gala Dinner, presentations by disruptive technologies like Simplivity, Aruba HPE, VIVI, Toshiba and Lenovo, or the gripping presentation from Andie Patchett about the St Kilda Gatehouse (, or the time spent discussing innovation with our sponsors…
In all, the 2016 Trident Education Conference proved once again to be an outstanding event for the key IT decision makers in Schools. If you missed this year, you’ll have to wait 11.5 months for the next one, but I know that everyone who attended this year eagerly awaiting what the 2017 conference will bring!


Nathan Burgess

Lead Marketing Innovator
Trident Computer Services


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