‘A win-win for everybody’

By Manette Newbold Fisher

Photography By Randy Montoya

Friday, September 14, 2018

NM schools receive 1,170 donated Sandia computers, accessories

Michael Somuk wheels cart through computer warehouse
PC PREP — Supply Chain team lead Michael Somuk prepares for Sandia’s annual K-12 Computer Donation Event. More than 40 New Mexico schools participated this year.

Students from more than 40 New Mexico schools benefitted from Sandia’s annual K-12 Computer Donation Event, where more than 1,100 computers and related accessories were distributed.

Representatives from schools around the state gathered at Reapplication last month, some driving trucks and trailers for up to four hours to pick up the donations. They collected desktop computers, laptops and iPads for students, along with printers, power cords, keyboards, mice, headphones, monitors and speakers. This year, Sandia distributed 842 desktops, 327 laptops, 46 iPads and nearly $100,000 in peripherals and accessories.

reapplication team prepares supplies for donation

TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER — Reapplication team employee Marcus Barela (left) records property information prior to its release from Sandia. Bernadette Bazen (center) and Semiramis Novak, also on the Reapplication team, help load desktop computers into a vehicle for one of the schools.

Michael Somuk, who leads the supply chain team that put together the project, said all equipment was in good condition following use by employees for day-to-day work and special projects. Once the equipment reaches the end of its useful life at Sandia and is no longer needed, it’s donated to schools.

Ben Potts, director of technology for Silver Consolidated Schools, said the annual donations benefit nine schools in his district. Before the Silver City district started participating five years ago, students used outdated equipment, and the district was behind in preparing for the statewide digital rollover for standardized testing. Potts said every computer lab in the district now uses equipment from Sandia, including a new technology lab at the high school.

school rep selects monitor
SCREEN TIME — Keith Legoza of El Camino Real Academy in Albuquerque was one of more than 40 school representatives who collected monitors and printers during the K-12 Computer Donation Event held at Reapplication. Sandia’s supply chain team works with schools to determine their needs ahead of the event.

“We’ve been able to add labs, and for the most part, teachers are able to obtain as many computers, laptops and iPads as they need,” Potts said, adding that as older equipment is rotated out, teachers continue to use it to teach students about the insides of computers or use parts to teach robotics, further extending the useful life of the computers.

“It’s a win-win for everybody because the schools get computers and equipment in good shape,” said Michael. “In New Mexico, that is extremely valuable because some school districts have extremely tight budgets. We’ve had schools come to us and say, if it wasn’t for this program they wouldn’t have any information technology resources.”