Minnesota Computers for Schools Takes Home the Tekne for Collaboration for Community Impact!
(November 17, 2016) On Wednesday, November 16th, the Minnesota High Tech Association held the 2016 Tekne Awards to celebrate the best and brightest in Minnesota tech! We are honored to say that MCFS won in the Collaboration for Community Impact category for our work delivering CORE: IT skills training and certification courses to communities across the metro through our partnership with EMERGE.
Collaborating with EMERGE has allowed us to reach even more people and to deliver a higher continuity of support as graduates leave our courses and go on to seek living wage, sustainable career paths. While these partnerships are still blooming, this acknowledgement shines a bright light on the work we are doing and reaffirms our commitment to this important piece of our organization! For almost twenty years, we have worked with local, community-minded organizations to give a second life to pre-owned technology in the form of affordable computers for schools, workforce training, and IT certification education. It is through these partnerships that we have been able to multiply our impact and create a more equitable future for people across the city and state.
Thank you to the Minnesota High Tech Association for this recognition, and to all of our community partners! This is a huge honor and a humbling reminder that our work is valued and meaningful. We especially want to thank EMERGE for being such a wonderful community partner and for continuing to invite MCFS into their space.
Scroll down for photos from the event!
“Partnerships and collaboration are paramount to impact.”
Countdown to the 2016 Tekne Awards.
(November 14, 2016) Each fall, the Minnesota High Tech Association’s Tekne Awards honor innovation in Minnesota’s science and technology community. Last year’s winners include Ecolab, the Minnesota Department of Veteran’s Affairs, Medtronic, and more. This September, on the eve of our 20th anniversary year, Minnesota Computers for Schools finds ourselves among the best in Minnesota tech as a Tekne nominee in the category ‘Collaboration for Community Impact’.
The Collaboration for Community Impact category recognizes collaborations that demonstrate dedication in delivering innovation while also meeting unmet community needs. At the core of it, MCFS places computer access and skills training in front of those who need it. We turn pre-owned technology into a new laptop for a student, a CompTIA certification, a neighborhood computer lab, another step closer to closing the digital divide.
These past years we have grown our partnerships with community organizations like EMERGE and, more recently, Neighborhood House to provide technology access and skills training to under-resourced communities across the metro.
It’s no secret that Minneapolis has been battling issues with equity disparity, and collaborations like these allow us to work inward for employment solutions, rather than searching for answers from out of state. Together we can help Minnesotans gain the expertise to land jobs that pay living wages and offer sustainable career paths.
Partnerships and collaboration have always been a cornerstone of our work. In 1997, then governor Arne Carlson established MCFS to connect the expiring equipment from large companies and government agencies to Minnesota classrooms in need of current, affordable technology.
This channel was made possible by another partner, the Minnesota Department of Corrections, who worked with us to create a recycling and refurbishing center out of their Stillwater facility. This workshop still operates today and houses our primary offices. In addition, we now provide IT certifications to inmate offenders to help their reentrance into the community. And, it is through a partnership with MCFS that the Stillwater prison can help achieve their mission of reducing recidivism.
For almost two decades we have continuously demonstrated what we know to be true: that partnerships and collaboration are paramount to impact. With support from each other we can amplify our resources and reach more people.
We are counting down to November 16th when the results will be announced at the 2016 Tekne Awards gala. Click here to learn more about the Tekne Awards.
Tamara Gillard, Executive Director
Minnesota Computers for Schools Named finalist for 17th Annual Tekne Awards
MHTA to honor Minnesota’s top technology companies and individuals at the Nov. 16 awards ceremony.
St. Paul, MN, Oct. 3rd, 2016 – (Press Release) The Minnesota High Tech Association (MHTA) has named Minnesota Computers for Schools as a finalist in the Collaboration for Community Impact category for the 2016 Tekne Awards, which will be held at the Minneapolis Convention Center on Wednesday, Nov. 16. The Tekne Awards honor Minnesota companies and individuals who have shown superior technology innovation and leadership.
For almost twenty years, Minnesota Computers for Schools has worked collaboratively with community-minded and educationally-focused organizations to give a second life to pre-owned technology. Through our community partnerships we are able to provide digital literacy and job readiness training that empowers marginalized communities with the tools to achieve a more equitable future.
“We are thrilled to be nominated for the 2016 Tekne Awards. Partnerships have always been extremely important to MCFS since our inception in 1997 when we first partnered with the Minnesota Department of Corrections to provide workforce skills in recycling and refurbishing computer equipment to the men at the Stillwater Correctional Facility. These past years, we have continued to grow our partnerships with organizations like EMERGE in Minneapolis and Neighborhood House in St. Paul to expand training opportunities across the community,” said Tamara Gillard, Executive Director, Minnesota Computers for Schools. “This nomination brings great joy and acknowledges MCFS’ commitment to strengthening our communities by providing technology and skills training to those in need.”
Presented by the MHTA, the Tekne Awards annually recognize Minnesota’s best and brightest technology users and developers in innovation, development, education, commercialization and management. A full list of finalists is available online at http://www.tekneawards.org.
“Each year, MHTA seeks out companies and people leading the way in innovation in Minnesota,” said Margaret Anderson Kelliher, president and CEO of MHTA. “These advancements are changing the way people all over the world live and work, and the Tekne Awards recognize those achievements.”
The 17th annual Tekne Awards program will begin at 4:30 p.m. with a VIP registration and reception, followed by general registration and cocktails at 5 p.m. The awards ceremony will commence at 7 p.m., with a post-event reception at 8:30 p.m. The event will be emceed by Paul Douglas, author, entrepreneur and meteorologist.
For additional information, or to register for the 2016 Tekne Awards program, visit http://www.tekneawards.org or contact Claire Ayling at 952-230-4553 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Minnesota Computers for Schools (MCFS)
Minnesota Computers for Schools was founded in 1997 under the leadership of Governor Arne Carlson to provide technology to low-income and disadvantaged students. MCFS works to improve the lives of individuals in need through access to and use of technology. Programs include a no-waste recycling and refurbishing center out of the Minnesota Correctional Facility Stillwater, sales and tech support to schools and educational groups across the state, and special Core: IT skills training to low-resource communities that includes Cisco IT Essentials, CompTIA A+ certification, and more.
About Minnesota High Tech Association (MHTA)
MHTA is an innovation and technology association united in fueling Minnesota’s prosperity. We help bring together the people of Minnesota’s technology ecosystem and lead the charge in directing technology issues to Minnesota’s state capitol. MHTA is the only membership organization that represents Minnesota’s entire technology-based economy. MHTA members include organizations of every size − involved in virtually every aspect of technology creation, production, application and education in Minnesota. Find out more online at http://www.mhta.org or follow MHTA on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MHTA.