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Ventura County Focus / Countywide

Used Computers Donated to Schools

January 16, 1998|EDWARD M. YOON

A branch of Rocketdyne has donated scores of used computers to schools in Ventura County.

Through the Computers for Schools program coordinated by the Detwiler Foundation, Canoga Park-based Rocketdyne Propulsion & Power on Wednesday presented 82 used 486-model IBM computers to the principals of eight elementary, middle and high schools.

"The schools are trying to upgrade the technological aspects of their programs so computers that they use are vital, and with the budget cuts, the schools are very happy to receive the donation," said Boeing Corp. spokesman Dan Beck. Boeing is the parent company of Rocketdyne.

The schools are Newbury Park High School, Royal High School in Simi Valley, Mesa Verde Middle School in Moorpark, Fillmore Middle School in Fillmore, and the following elementary schools--Cypress in Newbury Park, Knolls in Simi Valley, and Ladera and Wildwood, both in Thousand Oaks.

"We need top-quality engineers in the next generation and the way we begin to do that is to develop technical skills starting in the elementary schools, and these computers allow us to do just that," Beck said.

"The program enables us to allow kids to use these computers, which once helped build space shuttle engines, so that they can develop the next generation space programs."

During the past three years, Boeing has donated 600 computers to schools in Southern California through the program, he said.

Boeing also made a $5,000 donation to Detwiler to assist the program, which, in addition to assisting schools, helps prison inmates develop productive skills to help them ease back into society.

Boeing regularly makes donations of refurbished computers through Detwiler to 13 state correctional facilities, he said.

Lori Circle, communications director at Boeing, presented a check for $5,000 to Jeanette Roach, program director at Detwiler as part of Wednesday's festivities.

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