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Silver City Public Library Announces Partnerships for Digital Literacy

Submitted by Lillian Galloway, Silver City Public Library

Digital Literacy Grant County

Silver City Public Library Announces Partnership for Digital Literacy

This July the Silver City Public Library formally launched a broad partnership to offer technology training in Grant County. The Silver City library is working with the Bayard Public Library, WNMU Adult Education Services, the New Mexico Small Business Development Center, New Mexico Workforce Connection, Literacy Link – Leamos, and the Silver City Arts and Cultural District to offer free classes, workshops, and open lab sessions focused on computers, internet, and other technology tools. The project, Digital Literacy Training: 21st Century Skills for a Sustainable Grant County, will promote the development of the technology skills that are essential for economic growth, and will increase the capacity of citizens to fully engage in the community, access needed services, and participate in educational opportunities. It is made possible by the support of a Freeport-McMoran Community Investment Fund grant of $15,000, awarded to the library in March. “The grant has allowed us to obtain the necessary equipment—laptops, peripherals, storage cart, projector, and projection screen—to host classes with a mobile computer lab,” explained Lillian Galloway, project coordinator. Eva Artschwager, representing the New Mexico Broadband Program of the New Mexico Department of Information Technology, is also offering her time and expertise to ensure the success of the Digital Literacy Grant County project.

One of the trainings to be offered is a four-week basic computer skills series led by WNMU Adult Education Services. The series covers computer hardware basics, computer operation basics, internet and emailing, and Microsoft Office basics. Classes are held on Wednesdays and Fridays at the Silver City Public Library, and the series will be offered repeatedly throughout the fall. In addition, New Mexico Workforce Connection is offering hands-on workshops introducing tools like the resume builder, cover letter tool, and other resources available on www.jobs.state.nm.us. The New Mexico Small Business Development Center is offering workshops on topics such as “Using Social Media in Your Business.”

In addition to the free classes and workshops, Silver City Public Library librarians are hosting open lab sessions for participants to ask a wide variety of technology questions. Literacy Link – Leamos will be offering weekly online GED assessments. Future plans include “train-the-trainer” sessions for community members who would like to become technology trainers. “The digital literacy project is an important way that the library and its partners can contribute to economic development, education, and community engagement in Grant County,” said library director Eileen Sullivan. “Through this project, more of our citizens will develop the skills to fully participate in the civic and economic life of our community.” For more information about the project, contact Lillian Galloway at the Silver City Public Library, 575-538-3672 or ref@silvercitymail.com.

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