Helping At-risk Students in Silicon Valley Get Technology at Home

By Daniel Lim, EqOpTech Intern

EqOpTech held a laptop refurbishing workshop at the Bay Club. Pictured, from left, are Eric Che, Kevin Gao, Daniel Lim, Nate Latif, Trevor Smith and Cedric Chan.

EqOpTech held a laptop refurbishing workshop at the Bay Club. Pictured, from left, are Eric Che, Kevin Gao, Daniel Lim, Nate Latif, Trevor Smith and Cedric Chan.

I’ve always wondered how people live without technology. How could I do my homework or study or organize events with my friends? In my life, technology is a necessity.

In fifth grade, I met a classmate who did not have access to a computer. He was assigned to our group to work on a Prezi presentation. My group would have daily Skype meetings at 7 p.m. to discuss the project and fine-tune the details, but he never joined us. He missed a big part of the discussion and couldn’t complete the project because he didn’t have a computer.

It was my first encounter with a person lacking a computer in the Silicon Valley, but unfortunately not my last. From then on, I knew I had to do something about it.

REFURBISHING LAPTOPS

Three years ago, I met Terence Lee, founder of the nonprofit Equal Opportunity Technology (EqOpTech) at Los Altos High School. The organization redeploys old laptops to those in need. The idea is simple. Many businesses and families have older but fully functional computers that are collecting dust and eventually end up in landfills. EqOpTech scouts for donations of these older laptops, receiving hundreds from school districts, nextdoor neighbors and Silicon Valley technology companies, and refurbishes them to give to children from low-income families who do not have access to computers.

Thinking that this was a perfect opportunity to help, I joined EqOpTech as an intern in 2016. Since then, I have refurbished hundreds of donated laptops and organized a few laptop drives in Los Altos and Mountain View elementary schools, approaching principals and IT specialists for donations of their outdated Macbooks that were no longer in use. Recently, I led a campaign to refurbish 50 laptops for children in East Palo Alto, and we will soon be sending 50 more. Students can now do research and complete their online homework with the donated laptops.

STEM EDUCATION

Providing the technology is not enough. Teaching children how to use the technology and offering STEM education so that they can break the poverty cycle is the second pillar of our program.

EqOpTech has teamed up with Sunday Friends of San Jose to roll out and implement pilot STEM education workshops using the redeployed computers to access online educational programs such as Khan Academy and Scratch. Students attending the workshops are mentored by our EqOpTech high school volunteers, who developed personalized learning plans for them tailored to their STEM interests and needs. Students engaged in the workshops are rewarded with badges and have priority access to the dedicated laptops of the regular Sunday Friends program.

At-risk students at Sunday Friends also can also earn EqOpTech refurbished laptops after completing the Sunday Friends curriculum. Our goal is to help students develop a passion for lifelong learning with the technology tools to support it.

SANTA RITA LAPTOP DRIVE

Reusing technology gives disadvantaged children an equal opportunity to learn, compete and be successful in school. I ask you to join me to be part of the solution. If you have an older, functional laptop with a charger, please donate it to EqOpTech. Each donated laptop will be refurbished to its full functionality with a new operating system and removal of all personal data prior to redeployment.

Drop off laptops at Santa Rita School, 700 Los Altos Ave. in Los Altos, during school hours through May 31.

Read more…

Full article on Los Altos Town Crier


About EqOpTech

EqOpTech Inc., located in Los Altos, CA, is a 501(c)(3) IRS-designated tax exempt nonprofit organization that promotes and enables equal opportunity free access to technology for computer learning and STEM education in under-served communities. Visit EqOpTech at www.eqoptech.org


Our Equal Opportunity Technology program is made possible thanks to Los Altos Community Foundation community grant award. Visit here for more information.

EqOpTech Deploys Refurbished Laptops to East Palo Alto Students

Students standing in a circle were thrilled with their new laptops with Kevin Gao, EqOpTech President, standing in back

Students standing in a circle were thrilled with their new laptops with Kevin Gao, EqOpTech President, standing in back

EqOpTech of Los Altos, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit donated 56 refurbished laptops to middle school students living in East Palo Alto, most of which have never owned a laptop before. The EqOpTech students-help-students program seeks to benefit needy students with technology tools and training to enhance their ability to excel academically. Since 2015, EqOpTech has launched a program to recycle, refurbish and redeploy unwanted laptops to support and teach the Science, Technology, Engineering, & Mathematics (STEM) program benefiting underserved students in San Jose, Mountain View, Los Altos and East Palo Alto. Each of EqOpTech’s Macbooks have been refurbished to replace their outdated Mac OS software. Students will now have easy access to computers for home use to take online classes such as Khan Academy and collaborate with classmates in online homework and research. Read more here...

To help, please consider donating used, functioning laptops and drop off at Santa Rita Elementary School office (700 Los Altos Avenue, Los Altos) from now until May 31st, 2019 Monday to Friday from 8 to 4 pm. Please disable any password prior to donating. All donations are tax-deductible. Tax receipt will be provided upon request (e-mail contact@eqoptech.org). Your tax deductible donation allows us to connect people and create partnerships around the communities.

Los Altos Nonprofit Seeking Laptop Donations for At-Risk Students

Kristina Bullock, IDT, Principal HR Business Partner and Manager of the IDT Acts of Giving Program (left) and Terence Lee, EqOpTech Founder

Kristina Bullock, IDT, Principal HR Business Partner and Manager of the IDT Acts of Giving Program (left) and Terence Lee, EqOpTech Founder

EqOpTech, a Los Altos 501(c)(3) nonprofit, promotes and enables free, equal access to technology for computer learning and STEM education for students in need. We are seeking functioning laptops (Windows & Mac) with appropriate power adapters on an ongoing basis. Each laptop will be refurbished to its full functionality with operating system and removal of all personal data prior to redeployment. All donated laptops will be refurbished and redeployed to at risk students in Los Altos, Mountain View, San Jose and East Palo Alto.

To donate, please drop off at Santa Rita Elementary School office (700 Los Altos Avenue, Los Altos) Monday to Friday from 8 to 4 pm by May 31, 2019. Please disable any password prior to donating. All donations are tax-deductible. Tax receipt will be provided upon request (e-mail contact@eqoptech.org) and will be e-mailed or mailed directly from EqOpTech Inc. Your tax deductible donation allows us to connect people and create partnerships around the communities.

Our Equal Opportunity Technology program is made possible thanks to Los Altos Community Foundation community grant award. Visit here for more information. We are most grateful to our partners, sponsors and donors for their continuing support and generous donations.

About EqOpTech

EqOpTech Inc. is an IRS-designated tax exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that enables free, equal opportunity learning via access to technology in under-served community. EqOpTech provides easy access to computer hardware, software, and mentor support in STEM education.

For more information, visit www.EqOpTech.org. Follow EqOpTech on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.

Daily Point of Light Award honors Terence Lee

Daily Point of Light Award is a program established by President George H.W. Bush during his presidency to spotlight volunteers in the U.S., and it has grown into a bipartisan organization that promotes and mobilizes volunteerism.

Silicon Valley Teen Helps Bridge Digital Divide with Equal Access to Technology, read his story here

Terence teaches a hands-on computer-aided design workshop (featuring the fidget spinner) in August 2017, as part of the EqOpTech Tech Talk & Workshop Series in collaboration with Silicon Valley companies.

Terence teaches a hands-on computer-aided design workshop (featuring the fidget spinner) in August 2017, as part of the EqOpTech Tech Talk & Workshop Series in collaboration with Silicon Valley companies.


LACommunityFoundationlogo - STANDARD (2).jpg

Our Equal Opportunity Technology program is made possible thanks to Los Altos Community Foundation community grant award.

Visit here for more information.

Jefferson Award Winner Founded EqOpTech

LOS ALTOS (KPIX 5) Surveys conducted within the last year show more than one in ten California households don’t have access to the internet because many can’t afford a computer. This week’s young Jefferson Award winners is changing that. Read more here.

Jefferson Award Winner Founded EqOpTech

Jefferson Award Winner Founded EqOpTech

“It has been a real pleasure to serve the community,” Lee said. “I sincerely thank all the donors, volunteers, community partners and Bay Area companies for their continuous support.”

Lee noted that a grant from Los Altos Community Foundation supported the work of his nonprofit organization, Equal Opportunity Technology.

“We are most grateful for that,” he said.
— https://www.losaltosonline.com/news/sections/schools/218-schools-archive/57065-
Terence Lee (left) receiving his Jefferson Award Medal from Jack Russi, Chairman, Board of Governers, Jefferson Award Foundation, Courtesy of Ashley Cosmi, CBS KPIX

Terence Lee (left) receiving his Jefferson Award Medal from Jack Russi, Chairman, Board of Governers, Jefferson Award Foundation, Courtesy of Ashley Cosmi, CBS KPIX


Our Equal Opportunity Technology program is made possible thanks to Los Altos Community Foundation community grant award.

Visit here for more information.

EqOpTech launches Workshop/Speaker Series for scholars/students in tech field.

EqOpTech collaborates with MVLA Scholars to launch a series of Speaker/Workshop for scholars and students interested in the tech fields. Read more here.

EqOpTech Speaker Series 1 - Computer Networking & Cyber Security featuring Vijay Talati, VP of Engineering, Juniper Networks

EqOpTech Speaker Series 1 - Computer Networking & Cyber Security featuring Vijay Talati, VP of Engineering, Juniper Networks

The goal of the speaker series is to expose high potential, low income students to explore and pursue interests in the technology field. Likewise, the workshop series offer hands-on computer training aiming to simulate a real-world challenge so that students can learn how to troubleshoot and think on their feet to problem-solve.

— Terence Lee, Founder/CEO, EqOpTech
— https://patch.com/california/losaltos/eqoptech-summer-speaker-workshop-series

Our Equal Opportunity Technology program is made possible thanks to Los Altos Community Foundation community grant award.

Visit here for more information.

Senator Jerry Hill honors Presidential Volunteer Service Awards student volunteers from EqOpTech

Senator Hill proclaims and commends each awardees for their service and commitment to the community in the area of technology and education. Read more here.

Terence Lee, Daniel Lim, David Ding, Randall Lowe, Senator Jerry Hill, Aditi Talati, Arushi Goyal (left to right)

Terence Lee, Daniel Lim, David Ding, Randall Lowe, Senator Jerry Hill, Aditi Talati, Arushi Goyal (left to right)

Thank you to EqOpTech’s PVSA volunteers for your passion, leadership and service in improving our under-served communities. Your recognition inspires others to make an impact to change the world!” 
— Terence Lee, Founder, EqOpTech
— https://patch.com/california/losaltos/eqoptech-honors-2016-president-s-volunteer-service-award-winners

Our Equal Opportunity Technology program is made possible thanks to Los Altos Community Foundation community grant award.

Visit here for more information.

EqOpTech Bridges the Digital Divide with Laptop Donations from IDT

EqOpTech of Los Altos, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit is teaming up with Integrated Device Technology (IDT) to redeploy used laptops at Sunday Friends, as part of an ongoing computer reuse initiative to benefit needy students and minimize e-waste.

Robert Venenciano and Kristina Bullock from IDT presenting donated laptops to Terence Lee, EqOpTech (left to right)

Robert Venenciano and Kristina Bullock from IDT presenting donated laptops to Terence Lee, EqOpTech (left to right)

“This is a win-win situation for both the environment and technology for education,” said Terence Lee, CEO and Founder of EqOpTech. “We look forward to continuing this laptop reuse program with IDT and other companies here in the Bay Area.”

Read more here.


Our Equal Opportunity Technology program is made possible thanks to Los Altos Community Foundation community grant award.

Visit here for more information.