WINTERVILLE, NC – Altice USA and the Kramden Institute in Durham have partnered again to provide PCC VISIONS students with laptops as part of an ongoing effort to bridge the nation’s digital divide.
Every year since 2004, VISIONS welcomes a new group of Pitt County high school students into the fold to provide them with the support and direction needed to receive diplomas and transition into higher education. Over the past three years, Suddenlink, a subsidiary of Altice USA, and Kramden have given these students their own computers.
“At Suddenlink, we understand how important it is for students to have access to broadband technology and high-speed service,” said Suddenlink Regional Vice President Bob Lillie. “We are thrilled to continue our partnership with Kramden Institute and Pitt Community College and provide laptops to students in need as they work to complete their senior year of high school and continue their post-secondary education.”
PCC VISIONS Director Rebecca Warren said she was grateful to Altice USA and Kramden “for seeing the potential in VISIONS students” and helping them reap the benefits of a learning experience. fairer.
“The partnership with Altice USA and Kramden has allowed many of our VISIONS students to experience a freedom they have never known before,” said Warren. “It gave them the ability to have their own laptop at home for school work and to participate in virtual seminars with our program, instead of having to find a public computer.”
PCC High School VISIONS coordinator Katelynn Speas said many VISIONS students could not afford new laptops and were using equipment borrowed from their high schools, which must be returned at the end of the school year. ‘school year.
“Laptops provided by Altice USA and the Kramden Institute are given to students to keep for life, increasing their chances of academic success while bringing them closer to high school graduation and the transition to college,” she said.
Speas said the 42 laptops distributed to VISIONS students last month removed a technological barrier that has become even more significant since the coronavirus began spreading across the country two years ago.
“Before COVID-19, students could hand in assignments in class and use technology in their respective high school media centers,” she said. “This has changed with the pandemic and many students have struggled to complete and turn in homework assignments via an online learning platform.”
Speas said VISIONS students can use their new laptops to access high-speed Internet for $15 a month through Altice USA. She said it allowed them to take classes virtually and participate in classes when they weren’t meeting in person.
“These laptops allow our students to have their own means of attending seminars virtually via Zoom and avoid having to navigate the process of sharing technology at home or using phones that can easily drop a Wi-Fi signal,” Speas said, adding that the computers donated last year had a significant impact on students preparing to graduate from high school this spring.
A partnership between the PCC Foundation, Pitt County Schools, and the Eddie & Jo Allison Smith Family Foundation, VISIONS has helped more than 1,000 local students complete high school and access higher education and/or local labor over the past 18 years. .