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Drexel Leads Charge for Digital Inclusion at Philly Tech Week

April 24, 2012

Drexel University will take part in Philly Tech Week’s annual celebration of innovation and technology from April 23-28. The week of events, exhibitions, panels and celebrations brings technologists, entrepreneurs, investors, policymakers, educators, and enthusiasts together for a week of tech-related exhibits, demonstrations, discussions and gatherings throughout the city.

Drexel students, faculty and professional staff will take part in events each day during the week highlighting the work of its signature initiative – KEYSPOT: Powered by the Freedom Rings Partnership. KEYSPOT is a citywide initiative with 50 cooperating organizations that provide free internet access, computer classes, one-on-one training at more than 80 locations, or KEYSPOTS. Below is a schedule of all Drexel-related activities during Philly Tech Week to highlight this work:

Tuesday, April 24
The intersection of print and digital literacy (6:30-8 p.m. - Municipal Services Building, 1401 J.F.K. Blvd., 16th Floor, Room Y) – This presentation and panel discussion will explore how technology-based programs can support the learning needs of nearly 550,000 adult Philadelphians who are unable to meet the requirements for entry into postsecondary training or family‐sustaining jobs. Representatives from the Mayor’s Commission on Literacy and KEYSPOTS will participate with The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jeff Gelles moderating the panel.

Wednesday, April 25
Women and Minorities in Technology (3:30-5 p.m. - Drexel University, Papadakis Integrated Sciences Building, 3245 Chestnut St., Room 120) – This event centers around women and minority technology entrepreneurs, who will share their personal and professional stories, revelations and inspirations from the technology industry. Panelists are from the Philadelphia Office of Economic Opportunity, Wilco Electronic Systems, Inc., Empire Builders Group and CEOs from Purple Cloud Technologies Connexus Technology – companies that were incubated in Drexel’s Laurence A. Baiada Institute for Entrepreneurship.

Thursday, April 26
Broadband for Small Business/Non-Profits (2:00 – 3:30 p.m. - Philadelphia OIC, 1231 N. Broad St.) – Visitors to this panel can get expert advice on growing their organization with online tools from executives from Entrepreneur Works and SCORE Philadelphia. The discussion will be moderated by Peter Key of The Philadelphia Business Journal.

Community Media and Technology: Tools For Social Change (6-7:30 p.m. - Philadelphia FIGHT & Critical Path Project, 1233 Locust Street, 5th Floor) – In this workshop, visitors will learn about how technology has been used in social movements and how new technologies could help influence change in the future. Rutgers professor Todd Wolfson will moderate a group of experts from Bryn Mawr College, the Media Mobilizing Project and the Center for Digital Inclusion and Technology at People’s Emergency Center.

Friday, April 27
KEYSPOT Solutions Sessions (1-4 p.m. - Drexel University Bossone Research Center, Market Street between 31st and 32nd, 3rd Floor Atrium) – A panel discussion comprised of journalists, investors, educators and technology experts, including Drexel College of Engineering Associate Dean Kapil Dandekar, will work, with the input of attendees, to develop a pledge or mandate for substantiating public policy to support the ongoing work of initiatives like KEYSPOT.

Saturday, April 28
Tech Serve Genius Bar (1-3 p.m. - Drexel University Race Street Residence Hall at 33rd & Race Streets, Learning Terrace) – Community members can bring their computer, smartphone, media player and other technology questions to a “Genius Bar” staffed by Drexel TechServ students. The students can address both software and hardware related issues free of charge as part of the Drexel Expressive and Creative Interaction Technologies (ExCITe) Center’s community outreach.  Email for more information about the “Genius Bar”