Desert Junior Senior High School received 17 computers July 31 through the Computers for Learning program, which lets no longer used computers and technical equipment to be handed over to schools and nonprofit organizations.
Bryan People, 412th Communications Squadron, Computer Maintenance Field Services senior lead, started work on re-establishing the program here at Edwards AFB last April.
“I dove into it head first,” said People.
During the 15-month period he spent on the project, People faced some challenges. He had to work with three different personnel from the Defense Reutilization and Marketing Office in Barstow, Calif. With each new contact, People essentially had to “start-over.” When the program was finally re-established, the system had changed, which brought in “a new set of problems.”
“It was things like logging in, checking credentials, what I was allowed to do, what I was not allowed to do, and how to add schools and equipment,” said People. He added that the process was a “nightmare.”
“I just had to be patient through the whole process,” said People. “There were going to be hiccups and it was a learning process. But, I kept it really close to me that I was going to do this no matter what.”
After finally receiving the 17 computers for DJHS, People is now getting emails from other non-profit organizations that would like to receive computers.
“I just want to take care of the schools on base first,” said People.
He added that he would reach out to the neighboring communities next.
“They’re not bad computers,” said People, “Unfortunately, they no longer meet Air Force standards to function efficiently enough on our network. According to our process and procedures, we can’t utilize them anymore. But, for the school, it would be a great upgrade or addition.”
The CFL program evolved as a guide for implementing Executive Order 12999, Educational Technology: Ensuring Opportunity for all Children in the Next Century. The order encourages agencies, to the extent permitted by law, to transfer computers and related peripheral equipment excess to their needs directly to schools and educational nonprofit organizations.
Emilia Henry, Regional Occupational Program instructor at Desert Junior Senior High School, said the new computers will replace old ones as well as increase lab sizes.
She added that they may be used in computer labs, libraries or even for teacher use.
“This is such an exhilarating feeling,” said Henry, who has taught at Desert High since 1998. “I’ve never received a donation like this. Not this quantity, not this quality.”
According to Henry, today’s youth are “very visual and hands-on.” Her classes are primarily project-based and rely significantly on technology and hands-on connections to real life.
“The youth of our nation are our future and I am very proud of the 412th CS and Defense Logistics Agency team members who worked this great initiative so Team Edwards computers being refreshed and turned in for reutilization can be used at Desert High School and the surrounding community schools through the Computers for Learning program,” said Lt. Col. Christopher Budde, 412th CS commander.
People said he has three kids that currently go to school and he wants them to have the best when it comes to technology.
“It’s a great feeling to know that I work for an organization like the 412th CS that goes to great lengths to provide a service not just to our normal day-to-day customers but anyone who needs help,” said People.