April 1, 2020

Kish loans Chromebooks to students for remote learning due to COVID-19

Kishwaukee College loaned Google Chromebooks to students on March 30 and March 31 through their Chromebook Loan Program. The College held a Chromebook drive-thru pickup for students to borrow a device while complying with the six foot social distancing recommendation. The program is in response to the College’s decision to move all instruction online with classes resuming after spring break on March 30.

“The Chromebook Loan Program is a way to make sure we are providing the resources students need to succeed,” stated Dr. Laurie Borowicz, president of Kish. “I am impressed by the quick response the campus community has had to ensure students still receive a quality education remotely.” On March 12, the College extended its spring break by a week, giving faculty and staff time to convert their courses and services to alternative online systems. The College is currently functioning fully remote until further notice.

Key personnel were on campus to distribute the Chromebooks in a drive-thru pickup outside the Conference Center. Students were sent an email last week with information on how to apply for the Chromebook Loan Program. “We currently have about 50 students who we are loaning Chromebooks to for the remainder of the semester,” said Michelle Rothmeyer, vice president of student services. “We will continue to loan them out as we are able.”

Melanie Higueros is one of the Kish students who took advantage of the Chromebook Loan Program. “We only have one computer at home and my younger siblings have to use it for their schoolwork now,” stated Higueros. “I picked my Chromebook up yesterday and it’s been awesome to have my own device to finish classes.” Higueros said it took almost three days to draft a paper on the shared family computer. Yesterday, it only took about five hours to complete the paper with her own Chromebook. She is taking 16 credit hours this semester and plans to go to law school in the future.

The Chromebooks will provide a way for students without computers to access their online resources, according to the College’s executive director of information technology, RJ McGarry. “Students will still need to have a reliable internet connection. We are working with the Kishwaukee College Foundation to help any students who need help securing a reliable connection to complete their courses,” McGarry said.  

Students in need of internet can contact the Kiswaukee College Foundation at foundation@kish.edu for assistance. For more information on the Chromebook Loan Program or on the College’s response to COVID-19, please visit www.kish.edu/covid19.  

Photo: Kishwaukee College loaned out Chromebooks on March 30 and March 31 at the College as part of their Chromebook Loan Program to provide students with the tools they need to complete their Spring 2020 coursework online. Pictured: Michelle Rothermeyer, Kish’s vice president of student services.