Corps Cares: Recycled computers enhance school technology, save money
February 20, 2013
GALVESTON, Texas (Feb. 20, 2013) -- Students from Pearland Independent School District are getting a much-needed technology boost thanks to a donation of 64 computers by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Galveston District.
A part of the federal government's Computers for Learning Program, the district's computer donations assist schools in making modern technology an integral part of every classroom while reducing landfill waste following an ongoing refresh of three-year-old computers at the district's headquarters.
"I'm thrilled we're able to partner with local schools by providing educational equipment to help students succeed," said Marianne Fullen, computer donation coordinator with USACE Galveston District's Logistics Activity. "It's a great feeling to know that our donation is making a difference in the community."
The USACE Galveston District has donated more than 1,300 used computers to local schools since 1996.
"School districts across Texas are dealing with extraordinary budgetary constraints, which makes providing adequate technology for students extremely challenging," said Pearland ISD Desktop Support Services Manager Jon Block. "Pearland ISD is appreciative of the Army Corps of Engineers for their donation of computers. This donation will go a long way toward helping to provide students with the technology needed to achieve their academic goals."
According to Block, the donated computers will be distributed to different campuses that haven't been able to receive upgraded computers in quite some time.
"Pearland ISD is constantly assessing the technology needs of their campuses," said Block. "Each computer that has to be replaced costs the district approximately $500. By donating 65 computers to the school district, the Corps is saving Pearland ISD more than $32,000."
According to Block, teachers continue to adopt the use of interactive technologies such as projectors, document cameras and interactive white boards in their classrooms. While these technologies have proven to be extremely effective with instructional content delivery, the cost of maintaining them is also very expensive.
"The donation of computers allows money that would have been needed for computer upgrades to be used to help maintain other classroom technologies," said Block.
Environmental Operating Principles, often called the Corps of Engineers "Green Ethics," have encouraged Corps employees to consider the environment in everything they do, setting the direction the Corps takes to achieve greater synergy between sustainability and the execution of its projects and programs -- including USACE Galveston District's computer donation program.
"These donations provide an environmentally-friendly way of discarding hardware and keeps excess computers out of area landfills," said Fullen.
With only 40 percent of computers and 10 percent of computer accessories recycled after its estimated useful life, according to Environmental Protection Agency's 2011 Electronics Waste Management Report, the district's donation program helps the Corps maintain its commitment to sustaining responsible environmental stewardship.
Schools and educational non-profit organizations interested in receiving excess computer equipment from the federal government are encouraged to register online with the GSA's Computer for Learning site at www.computersforlearning.gov.
For more information regarding the USACE Galveston District's computer donation program, call Fullen at 409-766-3840. To learn more about the USACE Galveston District, visit www.swg.usace.army.mil. Find us on Facebook, www.facebook.com/GalvestonDistrict or follow us on Twitter, www.twitter.com/USACEgalveston.