I've joined the MVA community almost a year ago, I was looking for specific training on Microsoft Products (free if possible). I had at the time the idea of the old, as I used to write (Micro$oft), a company closed in business, focused about revenue, a company that was building fences around their eco-system to feed the machine. I was stunned with what I found in MVA, I started by taking courses on basic / fundamentals, things that I thought I already knew, but I always like to get back to the basics, I think that, no matter what, there's always something that you miss and might help you out, also you can evaluate your comprehension on a particular subject.
In the first months I've taken a huge dosage of knowledge, jumping around from one course to another, always that some was referred as needed, or on a topic that I was really interested or suddenly caught my attention, and what I've learned so far was great, not only because of the doors that opened to me as career changes or challenges but also, because of the knowledge itself.
The most important thing for me was to find that the "old" Microsoft was changing into something than I can only describe as awesome. I remember one of the first keynotes I saw when Scott Guthrie said "..It's never been a better time than right now to be a developer...". I've seen since then a huge work from Microsoft to be in every open source project, support them and leverage them, as open sourcing also their own solutions, I've taken courses on MVA of, python, MongoDb, Angular.js, php, I never thought I would live to see this.
Resuming MVA is an awesome learning resource and it's free!
As Christopher Harrisson would say "If you were like me, and I know I am", every time I had a improvement suggestion, noticed anything wrong or something, I took the time to pass the message. And I can't really remember how, but Matthew Calder emailed me "inviting" me to become a MVA Community Moderator. This was great, because I could not only get a more direct channel with MVA but only, make the difference and help other users world wide to get training and make whatever I could to make MVA the best experience possible.
I've been participating in "meetings" and other kind of awesome stuff, at least for me, for MVA and I feel that, I'm heard, and that's pretty awesome.
I was exchanging some emails with Matthew this evening about some difficulties that are being felt by the users and reporting as an user the impact of them due to Platform changes and updates that are being made to make MVA even better.
Quoting Mahatma Gandhi, I like to "become the change I expect to see in the world", and that is conquered with small steps, I try to understand everyone's question and try to find the best solution, and when I can, I feel great inside.
Being a MVA Community Moderator is a volunteer thing, you do it by passion if you will, the only thing I get back is that feeling of being part of something huge and the reward of helping someone to solve an issue.
So, as mentioned, the platform is being upgraded and something happened today that warmed me inside, I had 27 new emails from MVA, and I thought that something bad did happen in the forums I then realized that, I did get some badges and recognition by the work being made helping and supporting the community. I've made a lot of friends miles away from where I live, I've managed to pull off great collaboration initiatives for Microsoft Events, such as the MVP Showcase Portugal, where I designed and printed a hoodie with MVA advertising and also Pluralsight (www.pluralsight.com), also a great learning resource online. That was big, PluralSight sent me 100 coupons to offer a 1 month free trial of Pluralsight Courses, and I've been getting also some huge support from MVA and Microsoft Team in Portugal to make the LinkedIn group https://www.linkedin.com/grp/home?gid=8269003 a central point to gather the Portuguese MVA Community.
So, this is a track of what I've been doing in the last months as a Microsoft Virtual Academy Community Moderator:
I can't ever thank you enough for what you give me, so as someone once told me "Friendship is not something that you can't thank for, you can only retribute"
Count me in guys!