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The Study Hall

Learning from Steps for Beth


Beth Crook blog image

Last July, Beth Crook was laying on an emergency room bed, paralyzed from the waist down. Doctors needed to run test upon tests for the next 36 hours before a diagnosis. Through the chaos, a thought kept coming to her: “Do I need to cancel my trip to InstructureCon?”

Beth eventually missed the 2017 conference for edtech company Instructure, but still stayed connected to meetings with her fellow users of the Canvas learning management system through the wonders of technology and bonds of the Canvas Community.

However, Beth had just started a serious battle. She had suffered a rare spinal stroke with the promise of countless hours of treatment and rehabilitation. It quickly became a daily commitment to not only fulfill her family and job responsibilities (she works for an all-boarding high school in Delaware) but also to her recovery which doctors estimate could take two years. 

Beth Crook blog image surgery

Beth has posted lots of great social media messages and the #StepsForBeth hashtag was born. Her determination and attitude are inspiring others. Beth has made friendships with other stroke recovery patients, including a professional cellist who has lost mobility in his right side. Beth says every time she saw him in the therapy gym, she wouldn’t leave until he’s made a fist pump with that right hand. She said, “This has been a very good experience. I need to remain positive and keep pushing forward for family and support groups. I allow myself down days, but I usually keep in mind that I have two young kids, things to do, and places to go.”

Beth Crook watch image blog

Including InstructureCarn 2018. Doctors and her employer have cleared Beth to attend this year’s conference, which she says will be both a welcome distraction and a chance to re-immerse herself in all things Canvas so she can help others “That moment of seeing the mind clicking and the gears turning in my faculty members eyes. It’s a great feeling. As humans, we should be learning one new thing a day, no matter how small,” she said.

Check out how you can take #StepsForBeth for InstructureCon 2018 and a challenge that could provide a physical therapy machine that Beth has chose to help her in that recovery. We’re excited to watch it happen!

Keep learning,

Renee Carney
Canvas Community Manager