Why Take A Computer Course?

Do it for your kids and grandkids! Do it to get a job or to get a better job!  Do it to improve your business! Do it for your country!  The more people in the US who become computer literate and improve their own computer skills, the better off we all are.  Do you want America to remain the greatest country in the world?  If so, it’s important that all of us get connected.

 “Right now, nearly one-third of the country – 100 million Americans – don’t have high-speed Internet at home. That’s compared to Singapore and Korea where the adoption rates top 90 percentSome facts:

  • More than 80 percent of Fortune 500 companies today, including Wal-Mart and Target, require online job applications.
  • Students with broadband at home have a 6-8 percent higher graduation rate as compared to similarly situated students without broadband at home.
  • Fifty percent of today’s jobs require some technology skills – and this percentage is expected to grow to 77 percent in the next decade.”

 (Gottheimer, Josh and Jordan Usdan, “FCC and Connect To Compete Tackle Broadband Adoption Challenge,” FCC Official Blog http://www.fcc.gov/blog/fcc-and-connect-compete-tackle-broadband-adoption-challenge 13 Oct 2011)

These are facts.  For kids to stay in school, for people to get jobs, for the US to compete in today’s global marketplace and for us to strengthen the local economy, we all need to do our part and develop computer skills, also known as digital literacy.  Many people in the Oswego area don’t have computers or high speed internet at home.  But Oswego Public Library has both and will teach you how and let you use them for free.

Courses at the Public Computing Center are always free of charge.  Anyone can use computers and the internet in the Public Computing Center, on the Lower Level of the Library, for any length of time, when the Center is open.  Please call the Library at 341-5867 or go to the Main Desk in the Library to sign up for classes and workshops.

Many people use computers in the Public Computing Center for job searches, for social networking, and to learn new things using tutorial programs and links to internet sites on the library home page, and attending free workshops and courses.

The Public Computing Center at Oswego Public Library announces its schedule of classes for the month of November.

“Introduction to Computers” and “Internet Basics.”  are a series of classes taught every month for people with no experience or almost no experience with computers. The courses are held for 8 sessions of 2 hours each on Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout each month.  It is recommended that people take “Introduction to Computers” before “Internet Basics.” In November, “Introduction to Computers” is scheduled for 10:00 a.m. to noon on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  “Internet Basics” is scheduled for 6:30 to 8:30 in the evening on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

The Public Computing Center has offerings for job seekers. During Job Club, held every Monday afternoon from 1:30 to 4:30, PCC Director Theresa Slosek provides individual help with writing resumes and cover letters, knowing where to look for jobs, and completing online applications. Ordinarily Job Club is for walk-ins, but on Monday, November14, during Job Club, there will be a workshop on “Interviewing Tips and Practice,”  which you must sign up for ahead of time.  Also to help job seekers, a 2 hour “Career Exploration” workshop takes place on Wednesday, November 9 from 10 a.m. to noon for people who wish to change careers or who want to explore a variety of career options.  Both of these workshops require pre-regisration.

On Saturdays, Public Computing Center Instructors Sue Hansen and Jessica Galvin give one-time workshops to help people learn new computer programs and upgrade  basic computer skills.  This month, Ms. Hansen will work one-on-one with college-bound students to help them through the process of completing a FAFSA (Free Application For Federal Student Aid) online on Saturday, November 5 from 10 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., and again on Saturday, November 26 from 10 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

On Saturday, November 12, from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., a workshop on music, “Creating and Editing Music Using Free Software” will be presented by Guest Instructor Bert Jarred, Liberal Arts Program Director at Bryant & Stratton’s Syracuse North campus.  Mr. Jarred welcomes participants of all ages to join in the fun of making their own music.

Instruction in the latest version of Word, Microsoft Word 2010, takes place on Saturday, November 19 from 10 a.m. to noon, and on the same day, for those wanting tips on how to select a computer for home use, “How to Buy a Computer That Fits Your Needs” is offered from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.  Computer owners who want help backing up files or who have questions about their computer’s performance, like “My computer has slowed down.  What’s going on?”  can attend “One-to-One Computer Help” with Technology Support Specialists Matt Corey and Branden Smith from North Country Library System on Tuesday, November 8 from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.

Discover the world of social networking with two workshops.  “Social Networking,” provides an explanation of what it is,  an overview of networking sites, and an opportunity to sign up on a free social networking site.  This workshop takes place on Saturday, November 12 from 10 a.m. to noon.  For people wanting to use social networking for a job search or to advance in their careers, a workshop on “Linked In,” a social network used by professionals to exchange information, ideas and opportunities takes place on Saturday, November 26 from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.  We’ll show you how to join over 120 million professionals who connect on LinkedIn.

Anyone who would like help with a job search, including writing and polishing resumes and cover letters, where to look for job openings, and interview skills, is invited to join the Job Club, held every Monday afternoon from 1:30 – 4:00 p.m.  During Job Club you will also learn how to access Brainfuse JobNow for free.  JobNow  is an online serviced that has professionals who will edit and improve resumes and cover letters, and help individuals develop interviewing skills.

The Public Computing Center at Oswego Public Library is open daily except Sundays, with computer and job skills classes and someone to help members of the public with anything computer, technology or job search related.  In addition, the library has online tutorials to help people develop skills they need to become employed or to improve their employment status.

Please call the Library at 341-5867 or go to the Main Desk in the Library to sign up for classes and workshops.  Programs are provided free of charge through a Broadband Technology Opportunity (BTOP) grant.