University of Wisconsion - Eau Claire

UWEC

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Proposal

Digital Literacy Coaches/Navigators

30 hours


Community partner: Eau Claire County
Supervisor: Donald D. Mowry
Beginning date:
2021-09-13
Ending Date:
2022-12-16

Service-Learning Proposal Description

1.

Briefly describe the project and the community need to be addressed.

Answer There is a concerted effort in this country to provide access to high-speed internet to all citizens. However, research suggests that only providing access does not address issues of adoption, especially for persons who lack digital literacy skills. This project will match volunteers with persons who wish to connect with the internet according to their individual needs. After a brief training, students will be able to contact persons and help them develop specific digital literacy skills. The skill areas will vary according to the person's individual interests and needs. A library of online resources for learning will be established and maintained by the community partner.

2.

What is the mission of the agency or organization?

Answer Access to high speed internet is a necessity to promote economic development, enhanced healthcare, education for all ages, increased agricultural productivity, and civic engagement. The mission of the Eau Claire County Broadband Committee is to serve as a collaboration and connection hub that works with citizens, businesses, industries, agriculture, units of government, and broadband providers to increase the availability, delivery, and utilization of high speed internet* services countywide.

3.

What skills are required for this project? 

Answer Most, if not all, college students have already developed a digital literacy skill set that can be used to participate in this project. Using social media, privacy and security, email, presentations, online searching, assessing media for accuracy, are all skills that citizens may show an interest in learning. Students will be contributing to the development of an educational and supportive program which will be a valuable skill set for a post-COVID environment. This project might appeal to certain majors, but it may also appeal to students of any major who are interested in sharing their skill set and helping others become more digitally literate.

4.

What are the objectives for the student learning and service?

Answer Connect and engage with residents from Eau Claire County and assist them with developing digital literacy skills. Students will gain valuable experience in teaching others via online communications, phone, or possibly in person.

5.

What are the availability requirements for the student?

Answer This can be accomplished anytime the student and the community person has time for coaching/mentoring.

6.

Additional information (not required).

Answer There are currently three projects in the works that are expanding high-speed internet access to unserved and underserved areas of Eau Claire County. After these projects are completed, two of the 13 townships in the county will have the capability of bringing high-speed fiber to the premises for all township residents. The Broadband Committee has a vision of repeating that process in the remaining townships until all county residents have access to high-speed internet.