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NC3 has some impressive Master Instructors in our ranks and this Instructor Spotlight series aims to highlight the incredibly talented individuals who work with us. We’ll be featuring a new interview in our monthly newsletters, here on our website, and on our social media pages each month.
NC3 Master Instructor | Festo Didactic North America
Daniel Edwards is an instructor at Patrick & Henry Community College in Martinsville, Virginia and an NC3 Master Instructor for Festo Didactic North America. He started in the manufacturing industry just after highschool. In 2009, he enrolled in the Industrial Electronics Technology program at Patrick & Henry Community College. His passion for helping classmates while attending college motivated him to apply for a part time position at Patrick & Henry Community College in 2011. In 2013, he joined Patrick & Henry Community College full-time and now is program head for the Industrial Electronics Technology, Mechatronics and Industry 4.0 programs. He started training with NC3 in May 2018 before officially becoming an NC3 Master Instructor in October 2019.
Check out our Q&A session below to learn more about Daniel, how he originally got involved with NC3, his favorite part of NC3’s Train-the-Trainer events and being an NC3 Master Instructor, and more!
NC3 Program Manager, Lisa Marshall, sat down with Daniel to talk all about his work as an NC3 Master Instructor.
Thank you for sharing your story with the NC3 Network, Daniel! How did you originally get involved with NC3?
Programs at Patrick & Henry Community College are industry driven and employers were looking for short-term credentials as a way to fill skills gaps. After growing the industrial electronics program into a robust mechatronics program, Industry 4.0 was the next logical step. So Patrick & Henry Community College hosted a meeting with NC3 and Festo representatives along with regional employers and became one of the first colleges in the nation to offer the NC3 Festo Industry 4.0 certification program.
What is your favorite part of NC3’s Train-the-Trainer events and being an NC3 Master Instructor?
My favorite part of NC3’s Train-the-Trainer events is networking with other schools and learning the teaching strategies and resources used that promote student success. Being an NC3 Master Instructor, gives me the opportunity to not only change the lives of students in my class but also to have an impact on instructors and students on a global level.
What would you say to schools considering having one/some of their instructions join the NC3 Master Instructor Team?
Anytime a school has the opportunity to invest in the professional development and growth of its faculty it is beneficial to the college and most importantly to the students.
How has your professional experience becoming an NC3 Master Instructor influenced the way that you teach your classes?
I’ve learned ways to keep students more engaged in and outside of the classroom through ideas shared at Train-the-Trainer events.
Describe something you’re proud of and passionate about that your school does?
My passion is changing the lives and future of my students through teaching them the skills needed to be successful in their careers.
What hobbies or other activities do you do outside of school and NC3?
I enjoy traveling, spending time with my wife and two daughters, and riding motorcycles when time permits.
Who was the NC3 contact and the administrator who helped you start your journey to becoming an NC3 Master Instructor? How did/do they support you?
Lisa Marshall, NC3’s Program Manager for Festo, and Rhonda Hodges, the Vice President of Workforce, Economic, and Community Development at Patrick & Henry Community College, helped me start my journey with NC3 and I can’t thank them enough. Their support has allowed me to stay current in my field of study, grow successful programs at P&HCC, and most importantly, provide cutting edge training to my students.
What’s one piece of advice you have for students or that you would give to your younger self or other educators?
Pay attention in school, take good notes, and don’t be afraid to ask questions and take risks. “Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far they can go.”- T.S. Eliot
For information on P&HCC, please visit https://www.patrickhenry.edu
For information on NC3’s Festo Program, please visit https://www.nc3.net/partner-festo/
For information on NC3’s Train-the-Trainer program, please visit www.nc3.net/training