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(STILLWATER, OKLAHOMA / October 23, 2023) – As part of AT&T’s support for improving digital literacy nationwide, the company is helping the Public Library Association (PLA) bring free bilingual, in-person digital literacy workshops to more than 200 libraries across 45 states, including the Stillwater Public Library (SPL). These contributions are part of AT&T’s commitment to address the digital divide through investments in internet accessibility, affordability and the safe use of technology.
The workshops will utilize online digital literacy courses available through DigitalLearn.org. Created in collaboration with PLA, the courses teach skills ranging from technology basics to avoiding scams. Because the curriculum is also available in Spanish, SPL will be able to offer a few bilingual courses as well. Space is limited due to the number of available devices so registration is required.
Workshops will take place at locations throughout the community utilizing the library’s new mobile computer lab, a set of laptops funded through the Brown Foundation that will be used to teach computer skills at locations beyond the walls of the library. The first several sessions take place in November, and more will be scheduled through January 2024. Upcoming workshops include:
SPL will use funds to provide trained instructors from Meridian Technology Center, as well as refreshments and USB drives for all participants. Workshop attendees will also be entered to win a series of Chromebook giveaways.
“Having the resources to be able to give away devices is huge for us,” said Emily States, adult services supervisor. “Providing assistance with using technology and the internet has become integral to library services, but we rarely have funds to put devices in the hands of those who need them.”
According to the U.S. Department of Education, about 16 percent of U.S. adults are not digitally literate. Advancing these skills is crucial to helping bridge the digital divide. It’s important that students and their families not only have access to the internet and computers but also have the tools needed to use that technology effectively, safely and responsibly.
“It can be easy to take for granted access to the Internet and technology,” States said. “Not to mention how many things in our daily lives require it. It’s become a necessity.”
SPL plans to schedule more workshops in the upcoming months. Payne County organizations that would like to hold a workshop at their location are encouraged to contact the library.
The workshop schedule, registration and more information are available at tinyurl.com/SPLDigitalLit. Anyone interested in signing up can also call the Help Desk at (405) 372-3633 x8106 to register.
To learn more about AT&T’s digital divide efforts, visit att.com/connectedlearning.