‘Breaking Digital Barriers’ between generations

HOUGHTON — Keweenaw seniors who are needing assistance learning to use computers can receive free help in downtown Houghton. The Portage Lake District Library has teamed up with Michigan Tech to help senior citizens and other beginner computer users to overcome the initial intimidation of the digital era we live in.

Students from the computer science department at Michigan Tech will be providing free tutoring at the Library for those who are new to computing. The computer help sessions will be held every Saturday through December 16th and will offer a one on one experience where learners will have an individual tutor available to answer questions and offer assistance.

“We host computer tutoring sessions every Saturday morning at 9:00 am while Michigan Tech is in session. That’s with a partnership with a group at Michigan Tech called ‘Breaking Digital Barriers’ and the goal of that group is to bridge the digital divide between older adults and new technology,” said Library Director Dillon Geshel.

The program will show participants how to use the internet to keep in touch with people, sharing pictures and letters, finding information, and solving computer problems.

“Drop in courses that we offer are part of a program called B.A.S.I.C. That’s an acronym for Building Adult Skills In Computing. Computer science faculty and students are in the library every Saturday morning at 9 am to help people at these drop in sessions. For November there’s a couple weeks where the campus is closed so we won’t have the computer drop in courses on Saturday November 18th, and Saturday November 25th,” said Geshel.

Tutors will assistance each participant with his or her own particular needs, and people can attend as many sessions as they need. Library programs are free, and everyone is welcome to attend.