AmeriCorps could face funding loss

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 27, 2004

The Selma Digital Opportunity AmeriCorps Program, one of the few ways adults can receive free computer training, may lose its funding if class attendance does not improve.

Amos Moore, program director, said only a small number of people have registered for the six-week course, causing him to worry that lack of interest could mean the end for the program.

If this trend continues, Moore says, AmeriCorps may threaten to pull its funding of the program and use it toward something else.

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AmeriCorps volunteers began teaching a new six-week session on Monday.

Out of a number of training sites across the city, only three-Felix Heights Community Building, George Washington Carver Homes Community Building, and Valley Creek Apartments Community Building-have people registered to take the computer courses.

Moore said his biggest challenge is recruiting men to take an interest in learning computer skills.

Throughout the course, citizens are taught basic computer applications, such as Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Words, and Power Point.

Everyone who takes the course is given an assessment test prior to the training so volunteers have a better understanding of each person’s computer knowledge.

At the end of the six weeks, citizens who pass a final test receive a certificate showing they completed the course.

Two computer classes are held each day, beginning at 10 a.m. to noon and again at

5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Courses are also held on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to noon. Moore said volunteer teachers at this class offer training at a higher level.

The Selma Digital Opportunity is still registering people for the classes, but Moore says if people wait too late they may not be able catch up without already having some computer skills.

The computer centers are also open to all citizens who want to check their e-mail or browse the Internet when classes are not in session.

To register for the computer training courses, interested citizens can contact Moore at 874-2409.