OCTOBER 18, 2000 The latest report on the digital divide might have left out Native Americans, but the US Department of Commerce isn't planning on ignoring the technological needs of Indian Country. Secretary Norman Y. Mineta has embarked on his own digital divide tour of the nation, which stops in Seattle, Washington, today. He follows in the footsteps of President Bill Clinton, who visited several locations throughout the United States, including the Navajo Nation, in an attempt to raise awareness of the growing gap between the technology have and have-nots. While in Seattle, Mineta will donate thousands of computers and equipment to several educational institutions. Included among the group of historically black colleges and Hispanic serving institutions is the Northwest Indian College. The Northwest Indian College is one of the nation's 31 tribal colleges. Located in Bellingham, Washington, the college draws students from tribes throughout the Pacific Northwest. The college also boasts being an authorized Microsoft academic training provider. The program helps students learn the practical computing skills they need to survive in the professional world. On hand to receive the computer donation will be Dr. Tommy Lewis, President of the college. Students will also attend the event. Mineta is also taking his tour to Indian Country in New Mexico. On Friday, he will meet with tribal leaders at the Santa Fe Indian School in Santa Fe, where a new $4 million math, science, and technology facility was dedicated last week. Later on Friday, he will travel to Cochiti Pueblo, located south of Santa Fe, to meet with leaders and tour the community. On Monday, the Department of Commerce released its latest report on the digital divide. While access has increased dramatically for the entire country, the use of technology by American Indians and Alaska Natives isn't addressed by the report. Relevant Links:
The Northwest Indian College - www.nwic.edu
The Microsoft Authorized Academic Training Provider program - www.microsoft.com//education/aatp Related Stories:
Indians left out of digital divide (Tech 10/17)
City declares Indian School day (Indian U. 10/10)
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