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person looking at laptop
Digital readiness class at Kapiʻolani CC.

Students who complete a free digital readiness course being offered by four University of Hawaiʻi Community College campuses statewide may receive a refurbished laptop, while supplies last. Hawaiʻi CC, Kapiʻolani CC, Kauaʻi CC and Windward CC are offering the introductory hands-on classes for adults with little or no computer experience.

Classes will begin in March. To register for digital readiness classes at participating UH Community Colleges and for class times, call (808) 235-7334. Students who complete this course will also receive a year-long subscription to NorthStar’s online courses, in order to increase their digital literacy or acquire other workforce skills.

500-plus participants

person teaching computer class
Digital readiness class at Kapiʻolani CC.

UH Community Colleges began offering the digital readiness program in May 2021 in partnership with the Workforce Development Council and the Hawaiʻi State Public Library System. More than 520 Hawaiʻi residents took the course in 2021, including Fely Dias.

“I am not afraid of using the computer anymore,” Dias said, after completing the course at Windward CC. “The digital readiness class has helped me to navigate the computer better on my own. I can see the computer is a very convenient tool for me to handle the day-to-day things now. …I learned to create an email and to browse the internet, which are wonderful.”

Free laptops

The State of Hawaiʻi Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT) and UH signed a memorandum of agreement for the laptops in January.

Under the agreement, DBEDT is providing 100 refurbished laptop computers for distribution to students who complete the UH Community Colleges’ digital readiness course. In return, UH will:

people repairing laptops
Laptops being refurbished at Hawaiian Hope.

The refurbished laptops are being divided equally among the four campuses and will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

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