Libraries Ready to Code Awards Microfunding on Digital Learning Day

For Immediate Release
Thu, 02/27/2020


Shawnda Hines

Asst. Director, Communications

Public Policy and Advocacy Office

Today the American Library Association’s (ALA) Libraries Ready to Code initiative, sponsored by Google, awarded more than 100 academic, school and public libraries with $700 mini-grants to encourage digital skills education in honor of Digital Learning Day, February 27, 2020.   

Digital Learning Day is an annual event to promote effective use of technology tools and rich learning opportunities for learners of all ages. Microfunding awardees will use their grants to implement video-based lessons from Google’s Applied Digital Skills program to prepare learners for the future of work. Libraries are expected to carry out 4 sessions of digital skills programming by May 31, 2020. Examples of grantee programs include:  

  • San Jose (Cal.) State University, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Library Student Technology Training Center will host a series of workshops, panel discussions, and instruction sessions using Google apps to research industry salaries and learn how to successfully negotiate compensation, featuring guest speakers from the SJSU African American/Black and Chicanx/Latinx Student Success Centers, University Librarians, and SJSU Career Center. 
  • Scobey (Mont.) Schools Library will facilitate college preparation and career readiness skills to enable students to complete college application forms as well as apply for scholarships.  

  • Voorheesville (N.Y.) Public Library will offer training for middle schoolers on Internet safety and digital citizenship during an after-school public library program and during an Enrichment period, in collaboration with a sixth-grade science teacher at a public school. The program will focus on creating and not just consuming on devices. 

The mini-grant program is part of Libraries Ready to Code, an ALA initiative sponsored by Google, that aims to ensure libraries have the resources, capacity, and inspiration to embrace activities that promote computational thinking (CT) among our nation’s learners. CT instruction involves exposing learners to learning experiences through which they can develop and practice digital skills to solve problems with real-life and interest-driven applications. Libraries Ready to Code focuses on providing equitable access to opportunity and seeks insights from libraries that prioritize reaching learners from underrepresented groups and low-income households. 

Google's Applied Digital Skills is a free, online digital skills curriculum that provides video-based lessons to prepare learners of all ages for the future of work. Digital literacy, problem-solving, and creativity are often cited as essential skills for jobs of the future. This curriculum will act as a resource and inspiration to all libraries partaking in Digital Learning Day activities. Applied Digital Skills resources and lessons are available and free to use any day of the year.