Digital literacy course seeks to teach basic computer skills

For those without internet access or the knowledge to navigate a computer, the trend of digitalization can be a burden.
Published: Nov. 2, 2022 at 8:17 AM EDT
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WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - As technology continues to advance, most things have now turned digital, including job applications. For those without internet access or the knowledge to navigate a computer, this trend of digitalization can be a burden.

A digital literacy program from the Cape Fear Workforce Development Board is being held in Wilmington through Friday at the NCWorks Career Center.

The course will focus on the following aspects of digital literacy:

  • Basic computer skills, such as using a mouse and logging in
  • Popular software applications, such as Microsoft products, Google Docs and search engines
  • Using technology in daily life in areas such as job searching, social media and digital footprints

Enrollment in the class will cost $70, but the fee will be waived for people who are unemployed, underemployed or have an income under the poverty level.

You might wonder how many people don’t know how to use a computer nowadays. Well to put it into perspective, 19% of Brunswick County’s population doesn’t have access to high-speed internet. For Columbus County, it’s 39%. That’s almost two out of every five people who may not have easy access to the internet or a computer at home.

I spoke with someone taking the course who explained why she decided to join this program.

“I wanted to learn how to send off emails and other things with the computer. That way, whenever I get ready to go look for a job or, you know, create a resume it’ll be much more better doing over the computer. You can save it or put it into a cloud so that way you can go back to it. It’s kind of confusing right now. It’s very confusing if you’re not used to it. But I have to say, that’s why I’m in this class today. So, I can learn a little bit about technology,” said Ladel Simmons.

I was told that class sizes are limited due to the teachers wanting to have as many one-on-one opportunities as possible. Considering that the class focuses on hands-on learning, it’s more effective to have a teacher focus on each student.

The chairman of the digital literacy program explained some of the opportunities that are available for those without computer access.

“You and I may take computers for granted; we deal with them every day. But there’s still a large part of the population who for one reason or another, haven’t been able to work on computers, they haven’t been exposed to them and they don’t have those opportunities. This will give them those tools. Even if they may not have internet access at home, they can still come into one of the NCWorks Centers or the local public library and at those places, they will be able to go online, be able to get in and see the job opportunities that are available to them. They start to become more comfortable and more competent in computers,” said James Flock.

To register, call NCWorks at the following:

  • NCWorks Career Center in Brunswick County at 5300-7 Main St. in Shallotte: 1(910) 754-6120
  • NCWorks Career Center in New Hanover County at 1994 S 17th St. in Wilmington: 1(910) 251-5777

The current session in Wilmington takes place today through Friday from 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

The next session in Brunswick County will be November 14th-18th. There is no set date yet for the next session in New Hanover County.

To register, you can call the phone numbers above, log into your account at ncworks.gov or walk into one of the NCWorks Career Centers.