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Fall 2001 - Spring 2002
New CIE Center Members

Spring 2002
Three new Masters candidates joined CIE in February of 2002 and one previous master's candidate from CIE was admitted to the doctoral program. Although small in numbers they bring experience and contacts in Afghanistan, Colombia, Bolivia and Guatemala to the community.

Leticia Arteaga

I am from Colombia and I belong to a big family. I have nine siblings, twenty nieces and nephews and many relatives. In my nuclear family I live with my husband and my four year old child. Until I came to the United States I lived in Bogotá. I did undergraduate studies in Economics at the "Universidad Externado de Colombia" and in Social Sciences in Education at the National University of Colombia in Bogotá.

I have had experience in formal education as a university instructor in Colombia and as a Spanish teacher for adults at the International Language Institute in Northampton and at Hampshire College in Amherst. In my experiences in Nonformal Education, I was part of the administrative decentralization process in Colombia. I worked for three years as an education policy maker in the National Department of Development and for almost ten years with United Nations projects. The last three years I trained municipal personnel and other community members to organize and implement municipal poverty surveys. The surveys helped to target the poorest sectors of the population, and served as a social policy tool to identify potential beneficiaries of social programs in education, health, and housing. I was also part of the research group that produced the annual Human Development Report for Colombia.

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Stephanie Pirroni

Greetings to you all. My name is Stephanie Pirroni. I am a new Master's candidate at CIE. I have recently come back from Bolivia, where I was a working at Nur University. The foundation of my work at Nur was based upon participatory approaches to development that engaged individuals and communities in a transformational learning process. At Nur, I worked with a service leadership program that trained youth as agents of community development. I also collaborated on the design of a community education methodology that serves to build the participatory governance and sustainable development capacity of the diverse social actors at the municipal level. I have also worked with indigenous communities and municipalities in Guatemala.

As an undergraduate, I majored in Sociology and minored in Spanish at the University of Vermont. And on a personal note, I enjoy spending time with friends and family, international vegetarian cooking, hiking and taking Pilates (No that isn't a typo.... see classes with my sister. I am enthusiastic about the opportunity to learn with the CIE community and to take this learning to the communities with which I will work.

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Barbara J. Rodey

Barbara hails primarily from Tucson, Arizona. She has worked as a consultant in development and just returned in April 2001 from a year in Afghanistan. There she served as the acting Regional Program Manager for the UN Center for Human Settlements (UNCHS) in Mazar-i-Sharif, designed a small-scale micro-credit program for the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Kabul, and evaluated the European Community Humanitarian Office (ECHO) Kabul relief program. She has also worked in community development and micro-finance in Latin America and in rural US-Mexico border communities in Arizona.

She has a B.A. in economics from University of Arizona (1992), four grown children, a new grandson, and loves to hike and camp out in warm climates. She has just come to CIE for her Masters because, "Some of the best development professionals I know came out of CIE. The Center's participatory approach to development and education is absolutely fundamental to transformation of human society. Moreover, the program encourages me to remain connected and active in the field, enhancing the learning process through experience."

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Fall 2001
This fall CIE welcomes a large group of new degree candidates including a group of 14 from Malawi who are part of a partnership between EPRA Department at University of Massachusetts and Chancellor College of the University of Malawi. The other new candidates include two with Muskie Fellowships from Central Europe and five from other countries.

Policy and Planning Students

Samson MacJessie Ken Ndala
Josephine Mkandawire Fritz Kadyoma

Elias Watson Jani Chakwera

I am a Malawian citizen. I first graduated from the University of Malawi in 1980 with a Bachelor ofElias Chakwera Education (B.Ed). In 1984 I returned to the University of Malawi to to pursue a Master's degree program in Testing, Measurement, Research Methodology and Evaluation and graduated in 1986. I have worked in Education as a Secondary School Teacher, Research and Testing Officer for the National Examinations Board, Headteacher for a number of secondary schools and Teacher Trainer at Domasi College of Education.

My Current position at Domasi College of Education is Deputy Principal and more recently as acting Principal when I was accepted into a doctoral program at UMass. The doctoral degree will place me in a stronger position to build an academic career. I shall be able to serve my country better in the areas of assessment and research. My long term objective is to serve as a psycho-metrician and offer consulting services when needed. My immediate objective will be to assist other Malawians to further their education to Master's level in the area of testing and measurement. I also intend to conduct research in educational testing to inform policy that affects educational achievement in Malawi. I hope to address some of the serious problems that my country faces in assessment.

Outside of work, I am a family man and a Christian. I enjoy family life and fellowship with other members of my church.

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Abraham Sineta

I have come from Malawi to UMass to do a Masters in Policy and Planning at The Center for International Education. I graduated with a B.Ed. in Physics and Education at the University of Malawi chancellor College in 1992 and then became a Science and Mathematics teacher in a secondary school. I taught for 7 years until 1998 when I was promoted to a District Education Officer. I now work as a District Education Manager in the district of Zomba Rural. The District this year has 172 primary schools with an enrolment of over 150,000 pupils and a staffing of approximately 2,000 teachers. It also has 19 community day secondary schools. It is a big and challenging job to manage and coordinate the education for the district.

In my job as District Education Manager I have learned a lot of things about basic education in Malawi and the problems associated with it. At the moment my country is undergoing decentralization of responsibilities including education from central Government to District Assemblies and that makes my job much more challenging. My Assembly looks to me for professional guidance in Education. I hope the skills I will acquire and develop at UMass will help me meet the current demands and needs of my country.

During my free time I like playing the piano. I can play church hymns, traditional choruses and some local Malawian tunes. You can be sure of a good time at CIE if there will be free time at all. CHEERS!
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Tashi Zangmo

I am from Bhutan, a small Himalayan Kingdom called the last Shangri La. I come from a family of eighTashi Zangmot siblings, six sisters and two brothers; out of which I am the only one having the opportunity to receive higher education and to come to the U.S. Before I came to United States, I got my BA in Buddhist Philosophy at the Institute of Higher Tibetan Studies, in Varanasi, India. I graduated in 1995 from the Institute and made my way to Mount Holyoke in the Fall of 1995. I was the first woman from Bhutan to study at MHC. I graduated from MHC in 1999 with a BA degree in Development Studies (which was a self-designed major).

This is my first year at Center for International Education. I joined CIE with a hope that I will be equipped with the skills of teaching once I graduate from here. My interest is to become a capable educator who can work nationally and internationally. I want to be a head of an institution where I can make difference by providing support and ideas in terms of educational field to people who are seeking higher education. Especially, I would love to focus on women's higher education for under privileged women using myself as a role model. top of page

Josephine Kondwani Mkandawire

I come from the Northern part of Malawi. I hold a Diploma in Education, Bachelor of Education degreeJosephine Mkandawire and lastly, a Bachelor of Education (Honours Degree) all received from Chancellor College which is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Malawi.

I started working as a Senior Primary school teacher and I taught for three years. Thereafter, I went to Chancellor College for further studies. Soon after my first degree, I went to teach at a Teachers College for five years. There I taught Home Economics, Education Foundations and Creative Arts. Thereafter, I worked as Senior Education Advisor responsible for Home Economics at the divisional level for three years. I was involved in organizing and conducting Inservice Education for Home Economics teachers, supervising teachers and providing them with professional advice.

Currently, I am working at Ministry of Education headquarters as Principal Education Methods Advisor responsible for Home Economics in all secondary and primary schools. I have mostly been involved in reviewing, planning, developing Home Economics curricula which is now being used in schools. I also helped in the development of Malawi Integrated In-service Teacher (MIITEP) resource handbooks. I attended a workshop in Participatory Learning and Teaching methods, attended a three weeks course on Leadership Skills for Women Managers, was trained as a Textbook Evaluator, became core team member of the national team for migating the impact of HIV/AIDS on the Education Sector in our country. Now I am here at CIE pursuing my Masters degree in Policy and Planning. top of page

Dafter January Khembo

Dafter graduated in 1986 from Chancellor College with a B.Ed. He was a secondary school teacher for a brief period before he joined the Malawi National Examinations Board (MANEB) as a Research and Test Development Officer in 1987. From 1989 to 1991 he studied with the University of London Institute of Education and obtained a post-graduate Diploma in Education and a Master of Arts in Education. Following successful completion of his studies he was promoted to Principal Research and Test Development Officer, a position he was still holding at the time of joining the University of Massachusetts as a doctoral student in 2001.

Dafter's work at MANEB involves, among other things, investigating the quality of examinations administered by MANEB mainly through ex-post facto studies; training Item Writers and Examiners (scorers or markers); developing objective test items and papers for national examinations; and preparing and administering a battery of aptitude tests for job seekers and applicants for various courses at the request of clients.

Dafter has represented his institution at a number of educational and assessment conferences both within and outside Malawi. His major area of interest is studying issues surrounding administration and conduct of examinations. Of particular interest is the general public concern about the lack of consistency in examination standards across subjects and time, especially at the school certificate level.
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Dyce Kapumula Nkhoma

I come from Malawi where I was born in 1962 in a small village called Mwanyenga in Phalombe District. I attended Mwanyenga Full Primary School in the same district and then went on to Mulanje Secondary School. Upon graduation, I managed to secure a place at Chancellor College, where I studied Education with Biology and Chemistry. I graduated from Chancellor College with a Bachelor of Education Degree in 1991.

I then joined the Ministry of Education as a Secondary School Teacher and taught at Mulanje Secondary School, the very same school where I received my secondary education, for eight years until 1999. In May 1999 I was appointed as an Education Planning Officer in the Shire Highlands Education Division. I had the opportunity to became a national trainer in Micro-planning for the districts; and I participated in training District Education Officers of six pilot districts in producing a Medium Term costed plan. I also attended a Policy Analysis Workshop at the Mzuzu University where we analyzed selected policies. After this workshop I developed a special interest in Policy Analysis.

During my study here at the University of Massachusetts I will concentrate on Policy Planning. I want to study The Effects of Language of Instruction on Pupils' Attainment in Education in Malawi. I am interested in this subject because in Malawi the language of instruction is English. And it is a policy that anyone who fails English in any of the National examinations is considered to have failed the whole examination even though he has done very well in other subjects. Consequently, I feel, this has prevented those students who are not very good in English from continuing with their Education.

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Saida Nabiyeva

Let me introduce myself. My name is Saida, which means "happiness" in Arabic although I'm not from an Arabic country. Look at a map and you will see a young, newly-created, independent country in the South-East of Europe, on the Caspian seashore. This is Azerbaijan, "the country of fires," the country that I come from.

I graduated from the University of Foreign languages with distinction and began my teachinSaida Nabiyevag career in Ganja State University. Before coming to the USA, I worked as a French teacher in an experimental branch of Strasbourg University. Working with the curriculum suggested by Strasbourg University in this department and using new methods of teaching languages, I realized that the traditional methods that I used early in my teaching activities did not meet the requirements of the new times. Comparing the new methods with the old ones, I realized the importance of communicative methods that develop the learners' skills of expressing their own ideas or responding appropriately to questions. We need to develop a new teaching curriculum and supporting materials to produce new skills and develop professionally in new ways. So I regularly participated in training sessions, different seminars, organized both in my country and outside it. Now I'm planning to continue my education in the USA, to study at the graduate level and obtain my Master's degree. I hope the knowledge gained during my study at UMass will be very useful and I will be able to improve my educational level and to be a benefit to my country.

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Leah Kaira

I came to the United States from Malawi to pursue a master's course in Testing and Measurement. In Leah KairaMalawi I have been a high school teacher since 1996. As a teacher, I taught Biology and Physical sciences. In addition to this I also held a number of positions such as boarding mistress and acting deputy head teacher. As a boarding mistress, I was responsible for the welfare of female students at school as well as supervising the hostels.

Last year, I went back to Chancellor College in Malawi and completed an honours degree in Instruction, Media and Technology. I am married with two girls. The eldest is four years and the youngest is one. I am looking forward to having a wonderful time in the USA as I pursue my studies.

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Samson MacJessie-Mbewe

In Malawi I work as a lecturer in the Educational Foundations department of Chancellor College. I enjoy academic writing and publishing. Some of my publications include: "Authority vs Power in the Democratic Classroom," a chapter in a book entitled Lessons in Hope: Past Present and Future and "Improving Rural Girls Participation in Education in Malawi: Suggested Strategies" published in Tizame, a UNESCO journal. Some papers I feel are interesting are still in press for example the paper I wrote with Foster Kholowa entitled "Free Primary Education: Addressing Quality through Social Capital."

Samson MacJessie-MbeweI am also interested in analyzing educational policies. In fact that is the main reason why I joined the Policy and Planning program. Most of my work deals with educational policies in Malawi so I want to be grounded in policy and planning so that my papers should really be solid and influence educational policy in Malawi. My research interests focus on policy issues in education, education and gender, education and equity/equality. While In am here, I want to identify a journal where I can send a paper or two for publication.

My first visit to USA, when I studied at Teachers College, Columbia, was hectic because everything was new to me - food, culture, and the system of education, so that I felt stressed. Now that I am back, it is interesting that I do not feel the stress anymore. It's like I am at home. My hobbies including sight seeing, listening to spiritual music, and visiting friends. My major hobby is sight seeing and observing how people behave in different environments.

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Jack Stephen Chalimba

I am from Malawi. My wife Jane and I have 3 sons Stephen(1980), Maziko(1981) and Tamanda(1983). I began work as a Secondary School teacher of Mathematics and Physical Science in1978 and was promoted to headteacher of Robert Blake Secondary School from 1987. In 1995 I went to work with the Malawi National Examinations Board as a Subject Officer and in 2000 became a Principal Examinations Office. In fall of 2001 I was accepted as a into the Masters program in Testing and Measurement at UMass.

My major interest is standards in national level examinations. I am interested in the challenges posed by the task of setting and maintaining standards in testing, particularly in the Awards and Moderation of examination papers. I like gardening. It gives me much pleasure to see the fruits of my labour when I see plants and flowers that I planted and cared for maturing. I believe that my life is not entirely under my control, but have full trust in the One Who holds my life. It has helped me a lot to be a Christian.
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Martha Nyongani

I come from Malawi where I have taught at a secondary school and a Teacher Training College. I received a Bachelors Degree in Education from Chancellor College of the University of Malawi in 1995 and then became a teacher. I taught Home Economics and History at both junior and senior levels. I have also been engaged in other activities like being a Form Teacher and a Patroness of 'AIDs Toto Club'. At Bwaila secondary school I was also the Head Of Department (sciences).

I was transferred to Lilongwe Teachers Training College in 1999 to teach Home Economics and be the section head. I have participated in supervising student-teachers on teaching practice. I am interested in children especially those children with special needs. I wish they could be given equal opportunities just like their friends who are able bodied. I see my coming here as a chance for me to pursue my interest in seeing what can be done to help these children. Just before leaving for UMass, I was promoted to the post of District Educational Manager. I hope the knowledge and skills that I will acquire here will help me to be a good planner as well as administrator.

I like baking, reading novels and telling stories "nthano" to my two boys. I am Martha Nyongani from Malawi.
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Manaslu Gurung

I came to Amherst in the fall of 1997 from Los Angeles after finishing my BA in Geography/Environmental Studies at the University of California Los Angeles. I completed my master's degree in Geography in the Spring of 2000 here at UMass. My master's thesis focused on women's role in conservation and community development.

I am from Kathmandu, Nepal but I have lived in South India, Malaysia and the United States for extended periods of time. My deep interest in different people, culture and places has taken me to numerous countries in South and Southeast Asia and many parts of the United States. Currently, I am working for the International Program Office and the Lewis International House where I help organize trips and social activities for international students.

Apart from school and traveling, I am interested in cooking, nature photography, and working with children. top of page

Maxwell Nkhokwe

I am from Malawi where I received my B.Ed in 1994 at the university of Malawi. My major was in Regional and Town Planning. I taught in secondary school for two years until 1996 when I joined the planning Division of the Ministry of Education to work as a divisional planner. I was one of the beneficiaries of the International Development Research Centre capacity building in educational research program The program focussed on educational research methods and was spread over a period of time and done in different countries i.e Zambia, Zimbabwe, Neatherlands and Germany and eventually wrote my research report titled 'student perceptions of teacher sex' which was disseminated in 1997 in Germany.

In 1998 I participated in an intensive training course in educational data analysis for educational planning and decision-making. In the same year I was trained in Project Planning and Management - which involved a great deal of computer application, at the Malawi Institute for Management (MIM). From 1999 to 2000 I participated in the IIEP/UNESCO annual training program for an international diploma in educational planning and management. At the fall of 2000 I was chosen as a core trainer for the JICA/Malawi micro-planning and school mapping project. In 2001 I was transferred to Ministry Headquarters to coordinate EMIS activities. Now in the fall of 2001, I am at CIE, UMass to pursue a Masters program in policy and planning. I have seen what CIE offers for my future. It is promising better things than I thought. I am a planner in the making.

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Irina Anjelova

Hi! I am a first year graduate student from Armenia. I graduated from Yerevan State University and then continued my education in Armenian Academy of Sciences where I studied Russian Language and Literature, and Foreign Literature. I then worked in an educational unit that focused on High School, as a teacher and methodology specialist. Among the several opportunities this work gave me was a chance to manage the project "New methods of Teaching in High School," a project that was considered by Armenian Ministry of Education to be one of the most successful in our system of education for the last 30 years. Taking into account this success the Administration of our unit asked me to prepare and publish a set of new textbooks, based on the new methods. Two manuals: "History of Russian Language" and "History of Russian Literature" were published in 1991 and were awarded the Grand-prix in a national contest.

In 1998-1999 I worked at the "Radio Van" radio station as a Manager of the program "Education in 21st century", where I led a series of broadcasts about issues in Education. While the highly diverse nature of all these assignments has helped me gain a broad exposure to conditions of Education in Armenia, I could not study these issues in depth.. I realized that in order to be able to do so I need further training including modern research methodology, so I applied for a "Muskie" fellowship.

I would like to gain exposure to the latest theories and practices adopted round the world and bring this knowledge back to Armenia to use it to help reform our educational system into a dynamic, modern system, based on a reasonable and democratic basis. I hope that my program will open up new avenues for my further growth and will broaden my perspective as well as improve my career prospects.
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Fritz Kadyoma

I have joined UMass to pursue a doctoral degree in Policy and Planning. I belong to a Mang'anja ethnic group from Southern Malawi. I was born in a family that comprises ten children (four males and six females)of whom I am the seventh born. However, as a family man I have one and only wife named Grace and two lovely daughters named Violet and Moira who are aged nine and five, respectively. My family is so fond of me that it is a big sacrifice for me to leave them behind and come to study here at UMass. In fact, it is very hard for both me and them! However, life being what it is, sometimes one has to make tough choices like these in anticipation of what the future may hold, in return for such sacrifices (so I believe).

On the academic and professional side, I have made a lot of progress within a comparatively short period of time. I got my Diploma and a Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Malawi between 1986 and 1991. After this I worked in secondary schools as a Teacher of Language and Humanities for about four years before assuming a post of Curriculum Specialist at the Malawi Institute of Education (MIE). To date my work at MIE involves developing the curriculum for primary and secondary school children mainly with emphasis on gender-sensitivity in order to respond to the needs of both female and male learners.

Apart from my work in gender and education, I am one of the twenty national core trainers that have coordinated and facilitated the in-service training of teachers and primary education advisers in Malawi since 1997. I have participated in the development of curriculum for headship and primary education advisory training and have also carried out a few studies in the area of continuing professional development of teachers in Malawi. As a matter of fact, this area of CPD of teachers has, lately, become a major part of my professional work to the extent that my Master of Philosophy degree thesis, which I completed at the University of Cambridge in England in the year 2000, was based on this.

My current interest in the field of policy and planning in education is partly a response to the call by the Malawi Government to train policy makers and planners in education, and also to build upon the work I have already done in the area of policy reform and educational planning over the past few years. To this end I have joined the CIE in order to learn effective ways in which Malawi may reform educational policy and planning in order to respond to the current socio-economic needs and emerging issues for the education system in Malawi.
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Chokocha Mathias Selemani-Mbewe

I come from Malawi, Central Africa. I was born and grew up in a small village in Chiradzulu District where I did both my Primary and Secondary education between 1970 and 1986. I graduated from Chancellor College in 1991 with a diploma in education (1989) and a Bachelor of Education (1991). I majored in linguistics and African Languages with Geography as a minor. I am now here at the University of Massachusetts to pursue an M.Ed in International Education with a specialization in Testing and Measurement.

As can been seen from my educational background, I am a teacher by profession. I have taught linguistics and African Language courses such as Descriptive Analysis of Malawian Languages, Chichewa Syntax, Socio-linguistics, Semantics, Oral Literature and Chichewa teaching methods for six years (1995-present) at Domasi College of Education (DCE), the only college in Malawi that trains secondary school teachers up to diploma level to teach various subjects. Prior to my joining DCE I taught Chichewa (National Language), Geography and Guidance and Counseling at Secondary School level.

When I look ahead I can see myself changing careers as my interests are now leaning towards testing, measurement and program evaluation and I can see myself either as a test developer or lecturer in testing and measurement as this is what is expected of me after my studies here. I look forward to an exciting time here as I shall be learning almost everything from academics to the society and culture of the people I will be interacting with.
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Andrew Habana Hafner

Andrew started as a teacher of Bilingual Education and ESL in a public middle school in Washington, D.C. He later served as a Peace Corps Volunteer for 3.5 years in the Philippines, working as a teacher trainer at the elementary and secondary level. While assigned to a regional education office, Andrew worked and traveled across 6 provinces and 3 major islands focusing on his special interests in language learning and environmental education. His work in the Philippines continued as a private consultant for training and curriculum development, leading to administrative positions in an elementary school and a training institute. After seven years in the Philippines, Andrew is now a Master's candidate at the Center for International Education but still daydreaming of being elsewhere.

Ken Ndala

I currently work with Ministry of Education in Malawi as a planning Officer. I was posted to Planning Unit after teaching for eight years at a Secondary School where I headed science department for four years. I joined the teaching profession after obtaining a Bachelors degree in Education at the University of Malawi in 1991.

In 1997, I enrolled in the Polytechnic a constituent college of the University of Malawi, to pursue a course in Human Resources Management and I was awarded a Certificate in Personnel Management. I subsequently had the chance to attending the annual training program for educational planners at the International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP) in Paris from 1999 to 2000 where I was awarded an international Diploma in Planning and Management. I feel greatly honored to be associated with UMass, more specially with Center for International Education (CIE).

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Bob Wajizigha Chulu

I come from Malawi. My first Degree in Education was obtained in 1997 from The University of Malawi, Chancellor College. After teaching in a government Secondary Schools for four years, I joined the University of Malawi's Faculty of Education as a Staff Associate in the Department of Educational Foundations.

Currently, I am pursuing a Masters' Course in Testing and Measurement here at UMass under The University Partnerships for Institutional Capacity project. My research interests are in the areas of Quality Examinations; Examinations as an Aid in the Learning of a Child; and Assessment Practices of the Secondary School Teachers. When I return, I will teach in the Department of Educational Foundations at Chancellor College.

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