MEDIA CONTACT: LOIS GRAY
Iowa City IA 52242
PROGRAM CONTACT: JUSTIN THILTGEN
Release: Dec. 16, 2002
UI WiderNet project asks for old computers
If one of this holiday season’s brightly wrapped packages turns out
to be a new computer, consider donating your old computer to the University
of Iowa’s WiderNet Project to benefit our partner universities in Africa.
The WiderNet Project is a nonprofit university linkage project based at the
UI that aims to improve digital communication for colleges and universities
in Africa. This includes training computer technicians, coaching decision-makers
of Nigerian universities, increasing bandwidth, establishing university intranets,
donating computers and computer equipment and distributing educational materials
on digital libraries.
The WiderNet Project is collecting used-but-functional computers, networking
equipment and software for partner universities in Nigeria. They seek computers
that are Pentium or better; 486 laptops are also welcome. Their Nigerian partners
pay the shipping fees for the computers and equipment, and the computers wind
up in student Internet cafes and academic departments.
"Some Nigerian universities have just a couple dozen PCs for thousands
of students," said Cliff Missen, project director. "Even a slow
Pentium PC is a giant step forward for students who would otherwise be typing
their papers on a typewriter, or writing them by hand."
Anyone who has computers, software, or network equipment to donate, should
call the WiderNet Project at (319) 335-2200 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Most donations are tax deductible through the University of Iowa Foundation.
This is an ongoing project so computer donations are accepted at any time.
The WiderNet Project is part of University of Iowa International Programs,
which consists of a number of offices, centers, degree and academic programs,
research projects and services. Organized under the associate provost for
academic programs and dean of International Programs, these units serve to
further internationalize the campus and community and promote global scholarship,
research and training.
The WiderNet Project is funded by the University of Iowa, the MacArthur Foundation,
the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Agency for International Development,
and the Nigerian National Universities Commission.
More information about the WiderNet Project can be found online http://www.widernet.org.
For information on how to make donations, visit the Web site, or contact WiderNet
at (319) 335-2200.