Page 4 - LWTech 2021 Tranformations Magazine: Narrowing the STEM Gender Gap
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Keeping the Focus on Students During COVID-19
   In February 2020, LWTech was the first college in the country impacted by COVID-19. Named “Campus Zero” by the Chronicle of Higher Education, LWTech had about a three week start before the rest of the country’s colleges and universities started to feel the impact of the pandemic on their campuses.
LWTech quickly moved classes and college operations online, and the LWTech Foundation immediately began raising funds for students directly impacted by the pandemic, through generous donations (including a $25,000 matching student emergency fund led by longtime donors James Kinsella and Robert McNeal).
Faculty creatively and strategically redesigned courses so students could transition to online classes as seamlessly as possible, and the college procured hundreds of laptops, tablets, web cameras and other technology. The college also added WiFi in the campus parking lot for
Thank you LWTech Foundation & Community!
students to continue in their classes if they didn’t have internet access at home.
When LWTech began offering limited face-to-face instruction in the summer of 2020 (and for the remainder of 2020) there were no disruptions due to the pandemic because of the strict protocols the college had in place, and continues to enforce.
“As difficult as it has been to push through and continue with all the insanity and uncertainty of everything, I'm thankful I have,” said Erika Gursli, a student in the Architectural Technology program. “Having the opportunity to keep moving forward with classes, in a way, is like laughing in the face of the very thing that's tried to derail or stall us in what we're all trying to accomplish with our lives.”
              Keeping students on track in their courses while keeping them, faculty, and
staff safe, remains the
number one priority.
  This past year, through generous donations, the LWTech Foundation assisted students during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic— that included awarding
54 laptop scholarships to
ensure students had the technology necessary to be successful for online learning during remote college operations. Every student who applied for
a laptop received a laptop.
Longtime generous donors, James Kinsella and Robert McNeal, stepped up to provide a matching challenge grant of $25,000 to set up a special student emergency fund to support students. More than $70,000 was raised in just a few weeks.
The Foundation provides hardworking and highly motivated students with scholarships
and emergency financial assistance, enabling them to pursue their academic and career goals.
3 | Lake Washington Institute of Technology
Erika Gursli, Student, LWTech Architectural Technology program.
     Innovation in the Time of COVID

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