Public Housing Technology Center Development

VISTA Name: 
Ted Simpao
Program Start: 
Program End: 
Project Description: 

CHA and DSSA develop Computer Learning Centers(CLCs) for residents at assigned public housing projects, including those who serve seniors and disabled adults.

VISTA member Ted Simpao began his year of service at the Lincoln Perry Computer Learning Center. As that site was on its way to self-sustainability, Ted agreed to help part-time at New Englewood Terrace (NET), where DSSA and CHA were starting a new CLC. NET will be a new kind of building, with wireless technology throughout. Ted works very hard, splitting his time working at CLCs in two DSSA buildings on Chicago’s South Side.

Project Outcome: 

Many of the regular users at NET are children and young mothers looking for work. Ted has worked with Jonas, Frank and the building staff at NET to create curriculum to suit this population best. They have created résumé workshops and taught residents how to search for jobs on the Internet. Children who live at NET love to work with educational game software like the Arthur programs, which help them in school.

Ted gives students at Lincoln Perry CLC hands-on demonstrations during his regular lessons. He demonstrates what he is explaining, and he creates handouts with digital photos of his demonstrations to reiterate the lessons. This has been an ingenious creation, because he can show more easily than he can explain what he wants them to learn. We have adopted that idea for use at other CLCs too, especially in places where most of the computer users’ first language is not English.

Ted has brought Welfare to Work program participants into the building offices and into the Computer Learning Center. Their assistance has been a great boon for Ted and the office staff, plus it allows the participants opportunities to gain new skills and experience.

Transmission Project