When Tech Data launched its Giving … Back to School initiative in August, the response we received was overwhelming. The work our nonprofit partners continue to do for our communities is nothing short of awe-inspiring, so we decided to shine the spotlight on a few of the incredible organizations that earned the votes of our colleagues this summer. But don’t take our word for it — get to know them in their own words.
In Spring 2020, students virtually present submissions for Next Generation Tech, a PEF program where Pinellas County high school students compete for scholarship money and develop real-world tech and business ventures. Tech Data colleague [above, center] has served as a judge for Next Generation Tech for several years
Who we are and what we believe
In 1986, our Founder and Chairman Emeritus Dr. Gus Stavros started a local, economic education impact program for Pinellas County Schools called Enterprise Village. Tech Data is a generous partner in that groundbreaking program. In the years since, the Pinellas Education Foundation has grown and championed many innovative programs including Youth Connect, the Take Stock in Children Scholarship Program, Future Plans and Finance Park, the 8th-grade partner to Enterprise Village. Our efforts have raised more than $165 million to support the students and teachers of Pinellas County Schools, and the Foundation is consistently ranked among the top public school education foundations in the United States.
Our mission is to accelerate educational achievement for ALL students through innovation, relationships and resources. We have a strong belief in equity for all and that every student deserves a high-quality education. We seek to achieve this equity so all students have the ability to learn and stay connected.
How Tech Data and “Giving ... Back to School” has helped
Through our district’s laptop program, the Pinellas Education Foundation began a digital equity pilot two years ago to support low income families with access to online learning resources by providing a broadband Wi-Fi device. While we have made significant progress for students in grades 4—9, the scale and magnitude of the resources we still need today exceeds our capacity. We still need to acquire this technology for students in grades not yet covered to ensure they are set up for success and can participate in distance learning options from home.
Earlier this year when the pandemic hit during the Spring semester, students and families had to quickly move to a virtual learning environment — as a result, they received free internet access from a local provider to support their needs. However, that support is no longer available. With 40% of Pinellas County families opting for their kids to continue with virtual learning from home, and 60% of Pinellas County students being economically disadvantaged, the need for Wi-Fi access and remote learning technology has never been greater. We hope to use these funds to continue assisting students and families with internet and technology access through our district’s laptop program.
In Spring 2020, students virtually present submissions for Next Generation Tech, a PEF program where Pinellas County high school students compete for scholarship money and develop real-world tech and business ventures.
Our Success Stories
Below are a few examples of our impact that we’d like to showcase. A big thank you to Tech Data for supporting our students and addressing the digital inequity we face, especially this year.
- 30 Years of Enterprise Village
- Take Stock impact report(below)
- Closing the Gap impact report(below)
Visit our website https://www.pinellaseducation.org/ to find out more about us and how you can get involved!
About the Author
This blog was contributed by Tech Data's Corporate Communications team.