When schools closed over the coronavirus pandemic, children across San Antonio were stuck on the wrong side of the digital divide: One in four households does not have access to broadband internet, so those students couldn’t engage online with their teachers or even do their homework.
Digital inclusion and digital equity issues are front and center, and the need to fix the inequities and gaps in services is painfully urgent. (See NOWCastSA’s coverage of the issue here.)
If you want to be part of the solution, and you work for a nonprofit in San Antonio, you have until May 31, 2020 to apply for NTEN’s Digital Inclusion Fellowship (DIF), which is being supported again this year by Google Fiber.
What’s involved? Here’s how Emma Hernandez of San Antonio described her 2017 Digital Inclusion Fellowship:
Being part of NTEN’s Digital Inclusion Fellowship has led me to do some really cool stuff. I support digital inclusion efforts from the ground up: from recruiting and training skilled technology volunteers to finding innovative ways of connecting adult learners to San Antonio’s changing digital landscape. Best of all, I’ve counted on some great local support from my City Host, the San Antonio Public Library (SAPL), and our national network of Fellows...
During my Fellowship year I’ve coordinated the launch of a pilot hotspot check out program, developed a technology volunteer training, integrated digital literacy into multiple workforce development programs, planned San Antonio’s first Digital Inclusion Summit and even taught seniors the ins and outs of online dating. But we’re not done yet! To celebrate Digital Inclusion Month, we kicked off a new program in May 2017 which will allow San Antonio Housing Authority residents to earn a device by taking computer classes. (Click here to read more from her.)
NTEN and Google Fiber want staff members at nonprofits to apply for the yearlong Fellowship to learn more about digital inclusion and get support for implementing local digital inclusion projects.
Throughout the year-long program Fellows receive orientation and monthly online training; support in designing a digital inclusion project plan; coaching throughout the implementation of the programming; a project grant of up to $5,000 via Google Fiber’s sponsorship; potential to earn the Digital Equity Professional Certificate; cohort-based support; and opportunities to speak at national conferences.
Learn more about the program, benefits of participating and commitment required at the application page.
Disclosure: Google Fiber has generously supported NOWCastSA’s digital inclusion and digital media literacy work as described in this article https://nowcastsa.com/blogs/nowcastsa-receives-google-fiber-grant-education . Also, the San Antonio Public Library is an in-kind supporter of NOWCastSA.