Every year CTEP AmeriCorps members choose community action projects that make a contribution to bridging the digital divide. Please join them on Friday, August 5, from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at Saint Paul Neighborhood Network, where their members will share their accomplishments and struggles in creating community change through their projects. Feel free to swing by earlier for informal networking starting at 9 a.m; bagels and coffee will be served.
The Saint Paul Neighborhood Network’s AmeriCorps program, the Community Technology Empowerment Project (CTEP) bridges the “digital divide” for immigrant communities, low-income residents and persons with disabilities in the Twin Cities. AmeriCorps members help youth and adults use technology to access social, civic, educational and economic opportunities.
Here is a glimpse of this year’s civic engagement projects:
- Technological Inclusion for Hard of Hearing and Deaf Communities
This project focused on providing technology skills education to older adults in the Hard of Hearing and Deaf community through one-on-one computer coaching sessions and iPad classes. Community Partner: Ebenezer Park and Tower Apartments
- Stop! Animate!
A three week stop-motion animation camp for the youth at CLUES. The participants worked together in small groups to create short animated films completely from scratch.Community Partners: Communidades Latinos Unidas en Servicio (CLUES), SPNN, Independent Film Project
- Building an Online Instructional Resource for Low-Educated Learners
This research project, and the resulting intervention, supported CTEP members so they can better serve low-educated English Language Learners and boost digital literacy outcomes for partnering community based organizations. We developed an online environment to be flexible and adaptable for instructors as well provide relevant accessible learning resources to students. Community Partner: Jen Vanek, Northstar Digital Literacy Project
- Adult ELL iPad Camera Class
A class for Adult ELL students focused on introducing basic photography concepts with an iPad. Community Partner: Hmong American Partnership
- Twin Cities Techettes
A two-week summer camp that challenges participants to solve real-life STEM problems, develop technology skills that are necessary for life beyond high school, and explore STEM opportunities. Community Partners: Arlington Hills Community Library and Maplewood Library
- Connecting Parents to Schools
Connecting Parents to Schools aims to teach parents with low technology literacy how to use these school websites and applications so they can be more involved in their children’s educations. Community Partners: Wayzata School District and Interfaith Outreach & Community Partners
- Engaging with Technology at the RMDH School
Our Civic Engagement team has been working for the past year to find ways of engaging the Ronald McDonald House School in daily technology use in their classroom. Through lesson planning using iPads and interactive SmartBoard activities, we hope to give the kids a chance to express their creativity through the use of technology. Community Partner: Ronald McDonald House of the Twin Cities
- Aiding and Advancing the Presence of Participatory Action Research in St. Paul Public Schools
Participatory Action Research (or PAR) allows students to collaborate with community partners, mentors and school faculty to conduct situated research on the issues affecting their local neighborhood communities. Over the course of the year, we provided teachers and students with hands-on technical support during planning and facilitation of PAR projects, while documenting existing financial resources and teaching networks to support future PAR projects. Community Partners: Gordon Parks High School, Battle Creek Middle School, Como Middle School, and Open World Learning High Middle School.
- Digital Storytelling Initiative
The Digital Storytelling Initiative is a series of summer camps at the St. Paul Public Libraries that connects youth with technical and creative skills necessary for telling their stories through media, with teaching artists and mentors supporting their projects. Community Partners: St. Paul Public Libraries, Createch, MN Computers for Schools, Science Museum of Minnesota, SPNN, and numerous local artists providing their expertise and local businesses providing in-kind donations.