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Youth Education

New laptops for Torres Strait high school a boost for senior students

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New laptops

With limited access to technology, the senior students at Tagai State Secondary College on Thursday Island in the Torres Strait have been the proud recipients of new laptops.

In a significant advantage for the students, the joint initiative between Origin Energy, the Origin Energy Foundation and DXC Technology saw 60 repurposed laptops donated to the school along with two specialised laptop trolleys for charging.

As the only high school campus in the Torres Strait, Tagai draws students from throughout the region who board on Thursday Island during the week. Computers are critical to support these students’ studies, but there are not enough to go around.

Matilda Loban, HOD Student Services at Tagai State College (Waybeni Koey Ngurapay Mudth) said that technology availability was a challenge.

“We would love to accept repurposed laptops, as technology is a big issue in our school, and it would such a blessing to be able to provide our senior students with access to these devices,” Mrs Loban said.

Origin Energy Foundation’s Ruth Lee said, “Together with DXC, we are so pleased to provide these students with laptops – to support their educational journey, increase their access to technology and help improve their computer literacy.

“The repurposing of laptops is a simple idea, but the benefits will have a big impact supporting education with technology, and in recycling technology in the best possible way,” Ms Lee said. 

The YUMI (you, me) approach to education at Tagai aspires to academic excellence while maintaining the integrity of students’ cultural identity and language in every classroom. Delivering the highest standards of teaching and learning in a context that reflects the aspirations of the Torres Strait Nation.

As Origin’s major IT service provider, DXC is aligned with Origin’s commitment to support First Nations peoples and businesses. As part of its First Nations Program, DXC has coordinated the refurbishment and repurposing of these laptops, no longer in use at Origin. Each organisation has donated 30 laptops. 

DXC Technology’s Community Technology Enablement Program (CTEP) connects Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities with technology, supporting educational opportunities and building community capacity for self-determination. 

Stuart Meadley, Program Lead for DXC’s First Nations Program said, “Each opportunity to support regional and remote communities is particularly important.

“Our vision is an Australia in which Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and their communities achieve self-determination and proportional representation in all areas of our society; where we practice truth-telling of our history; and where we recognise and appreciate the unique knowledge and views of Australia’s First Nations peoples,” Stuart Meadley said.

Simon O’Toole, DXC’s First Nations Community Engagement Lead, a Eualayai / Gamillaroi man and Senior Technical Consultant at DXC said, “The CTEP is one of DXC Technology’s key Reconciliation Action Plan initiatives, because it connects our mob with technology at a time when we are heavily underrepresented in the tech industry. It’s gratifying to see these laptops get out to community, being put to use by learning new skills, and connecting our peoples to critical services, work, education, and each other.

Early exposure to technology was key to my interest in tech. I’m pleased to say I now work in the industry, and do my best to make it easier for future generations to follow in my footsteps.”

Interviews available: 

  • Students from Tagai Senior College
  • Origin Energy Foundation’s Ruth Lee
  • Tagai State College HOD Student Services, Matilda Loban
  • Tagai Senior College Principal, Suberia Bowie
  • DXC’s First Nations Program Lead Stuart Meadley 
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