Communitech COMMUNITECH Penn State graduates served HP in 2002! CommuniTech is a unique community service initiative at the School of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Pennsylvania. It is a non-profit student organization that seeks to "bridge" the digital divide both locally and globally. CommuniTech is one of the most active student-driven community outreach groups on Penn’s campus. Currently, its membership is fifty strong, and together they energetically and intelligently tackle the challenges of bridging the digital divide one project and one person at a time. As society becomes increasingly integrated with technological breakthroughs, there is a danger that underprivileged individuals will be left behind and as a result will be further disadvantaged in their pursuit for equality. Within universities there is a wealth of technical talent. Given this pool of expertise we believe that students can play a pivotal role in helping society benefit from technology and ensure that they do not get left out of modern innovation. CommuniTech's portfolio of projects is extremely comprehensive. Projects have been in the areas of software and hardware including: computer lab installations, refurbishment of machines, websites, and databases. A brief sampling of projects follows. In the summer of 1999, CommuniTech [at that time, known as Puente] installed Ecuador's first public elementary school computer lab and connected it with another CommuniTech-installed lab in West Philadelphia. In the summer of 2000, CommuniTech built a 40 PC technology center in the heart of Pune, India that offered free technical training to those who couldn't afford it. In 2001, CommuniTech launched an ecommerce site for the Philadelphia Brandy Wine Workshop that allowed artists to sell their prints online. In 2002, CommuniTech installed computer labs in several West Philadelphia classrooms and offered training to both the students and teachers. Overall, more than a thousand people have benefited from CommuniTech's work. The CommuniTech student leaders believe in measurable and tangible performance. We strive to improve our operations, grow our membership base and ensure the sustainability of the work that we do. Long term sustainability of all of our projects is one of the core missions of the group.