million people in greater Houston
million Houston residents living in poverty
families without computers at home
the number of jobs required some technical skill in the next decade
Victoria is a middle school student in Harris County. Her family had never had a computer. When her school gave her projects, she had to barter to borrow a friend’s computer or go to a public library. She not only wanted a computer to use for her studies, she wanted it to help out her siblings with their education, she wanted it so her family would have a better shot at success. Through the generosity of our donors and hard work of our volunteers, Victoria received her family’s first ever computer in August 2015, and she didn’t have to pay a penny.
Through this program, lightly used donated corporate computers are converted to a Linux operating system, loaded with freeware education programs and given to deserving applicants in the 3rd through 8th grade. To qualify, children complete an application and submit an essay demonstrating their need for a computer. The child will then attend a two-hour training session with a parent or guardian at their school. Training sessions are run every other Saturday during the school year with selected partner schools.
Learn2Earn offers students in grades 9-12 the opportunity to earn a laptop through completing a day of technical training. Students learn the basics of hardware engineering including how to build a computer, followed by coding a calculator in JAVA and translating it to HTML. At the end of the day the students earn a refurbished laptop to take home.
Learn2Earn Plus builds on the foundational skills students developed in Learn2Earn Basics. Learn2Earn Plus continues students experiential technology training paired with relevant skill building for today’s workforce. Students will be introduced to drones, experience network engineering activities, and learn 2D and 3D animation.
We know that the sooner students gain access to innovative technologies, the more prepared they will be to engage with the world around them, and understand the role technology will play in their daily lives. The Early Adopters Program is an in-depth exploration of today’s cutting-edge technologies for upper elementary students (grades 3-5). Students will learn to pilot drones, develop and test their own video games, build and program robots, explore new worlds through virtual reality and bring their own creations to life using the Scratch programming language. As an afterschool enrichment program, Early Adopters provides students a structured, engaging environment to explore and learn.
This hands-on, project based curriculum is comprised of five workshops: science, technology, engineering, arts and math. Participants in grades 5-8 will increase knowledge and technical skills as well as enhance soft skills such as communication, collaboration, problem-solving and critical thinking. As the curriculum leverages technology to train students in each subject, students will learn that understanding technology provides a foundation for skill development across a broad range of industries. Learning topics include: aerodynamics, biomedical/biomechanical engineering, hardware and software engineering, imperial to metric conversions and product development, graphic design and advertising.