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In the Community Stories

This page aims to share best practices by providing in-depth success stories about how organizations are improving digital literacy among local communities across the country.
computer center

The Inland Northwest Community Access Network (Tincan) is providing digital media training and workshops at its new media lab and film production facility in Spokane, Wash. Students of all ages are taught film production skills including camera techniques, industry-level editing software, and sound production fundamentals. Tincan offers other digital media and career building training classes that span across skill levels including computer basics, editing fundamentals for home movies, web development, marketing with Facebook, and blogging basics. The new space also houses Tincan’s offices, a 32-computer media lab, and a full professional video production studio.

Tincan is enhancing Internet connectivity across the Spokane Public Library system and various community centers. The project has distributed computers and software for public use to Peaceful Valley Community Center, Northeast Community Center, and the Martin Luther King Jr. Outreach Center. These locations and others will provide Internet access to low-income Spokane residents including at-risk and homeless youth and people with disabilities who do not otherwise have access and new spaces where Tincan can provide training in Internet skills. This project was made possible by funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act through the Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration.

instructor with student at computer

The Cambridge Housing Authority (CHA) is teaching digital literacy courses at three public computer centers to help people conduct online job searches, prepare resumes, and submit resumes to potential employers. CHA is offering five-week advanced computer classes and 15-week basic computer skills classes to local residents, including training in use of Microsoft Office® productivity software and conducting online job searches. The 15-week courses offer specialized classes on digital editing and publishing software. CHA offers other services, such as the digital enhancement of its Gateway English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) course and its family literacy and support program, Reading on Computers with Kids.

Additionally, CHA is expanding the digital component of its Work Force program, which provides comprehensive life-skills and vocational training for low-income youth. Participants receive academic tutoring, academic testing prep work, and mentored employment opportunities from eighth grade through their senior year of high school. Students use the computer labs to develop resumes, fill out job applications, and perform college searches. All of these programs are made possible with funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act through the Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration.

students working on computers

The Housing Authority of San Bernardino, in partnership with the Career Institute National Federation Center, is using a 12-week workforce training program to improve digital literacy among low-income residents, and teach basic computer skills and online job search techniques. The Housing Authority is also hosting job training classes and job search/resume workshops at its computer centers, teaching participants interviewing skills, and best practices for filling out online applications.

Additionally, the Housing Authority supports computer labs across various community centers in the San Bernardino City Unified school district. Operated by the Top Flight Education and Sports Organization, the computer labs are open Monday through Thursday afternoon to assist children with homework and other school-related projects. All of these Housing Authority programs are made possible by funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act through the Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration.

ed.gov logo

A new pilot program that aims to improve access to electronic textbooks for students with disabilities announced today that it has received funds from the U.S. Department of Education.

The funding will be used over the next two years to support the Student E-rent Pilot Project (STEPP). STEPP is a collaborative program with support from electronic textbook provider CourseSmart, the University of Georgia Alternative Media Access Center and AccessText Network, a nationwide organization that supports the delivery of alternative textbooks to Disabled Student Services offices at colleges throughout the country.

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