MetLife Bridges the Digital Divide for North Carolina School Kids, Giving Away 100 Newly Refurbished Computers


NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–One hundred North Carolina school children each took home a newly refurbished desktop computer over the weekend thanks to the handy work of MetLife technologists.

Building on the success of last year, over 250 MetLife volunteers took part in the “Geek-A-Thon,” refurbishing a record-breaking 400 computers, and loading them with an Ubermix operating system and the latest in educational software. One hundred of the refurbished computers were donated to North Carolina school children. The rest will go to the Kramden Institute to be donated as needed.

Geek-A-Thon is a partnership with the Kramden Institute, and supported by a $25,000 grant from MetLife Foundation. Raleigh-area teachers nominated students they felt would benefit the most. Half of the students who received computers on Saturday are children of veterans and active service members in North Carolina.

This is the second year that MetLife’s Global Technology and Operations organization has hosted the Geek-A-Thon. This year’s event was held at MetLife’s new Global Technology Campus on Cary’s Weston Parkway.

“MetLife employees are making community outreach a major focus of the culture at our new campus. The Geek-A-Thon event involving several hundred MetLife volunteers truly reflects our commitment to this community as well as our appreciation for veterans across the country. Technology creates opportunities, and we hope that by providing children access to state-of-the-art computers we can inspire the next Steve Jobs or Bill Gates here in the Triangle,” said Jim O’Donnell, MetLife’s Chief Technology Officer, Global Technology and Operations.

The Geek-A-Thon was an employee-driven initiative, which grew from a volunteer effort that one of MetLife’s employees started with Kramden in 2013. “It’s my privilege to be able to participate in this event and see how it has grown. The Triangle community has been very welcoming, and it’s a pleasure to be able to give back,” said Don Rowe, Vendor Relationship Consultant and MetLife volunteer.

Families coming to MetLife’s Global Technology Campus to collect their new computers were greeted by games on the Great Lawn, as well as a deejay and Snoopy. They were also given hands-on training and a chance to try out a host of fun, new educational software.

Saul Alto, a student at Barwell Road Elementary in Raleigh, is very excited to start using his computer. “I can’t wait to use my computer for websites like Khan Academy. It’s a learning website I can use to continue to improve my grades and earn points. I’m also looking forward to using it to access ABCYA, another learning website that also has games.”


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