United Way of Greater Cincinnati’s NKY Digital Equity Initiative has provided more than 2,000 students with access to technology and opportunities to participate in virtual learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. Those efforts will be recognized when UWGC’s Northern Kentucky Area Center receives the 2021 Business Engagement of the Year Award during the annual Excellence in Education Celebration presented by the Northern Kentucky Education Council and the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce.
Amanda Greenwell, the area center’s director, will accept the award during a May 5 virtual celebration. Awards also will be presented to teachers, students, school support staff, and others who support education.
Because of work slowdowns, furloughs, and job losses during the pandemic, many families have been unable to afford internet service. The NKY Digital Equity Initiative provides families with high-speed internet for one year. Since the program’s launch before the 2020-21 school year, 2,090 students in 16 Northern Kentucky school districts have benefited and 1,125 homes have been connected.
The Business Engagement of the Year Award recognizes a local organization or business that works with Northern Kentucky schools to improve student achievement through activities such as mentoring, internships, job shadowing, STEM activities, literacy coaching, Junior Achievement, First Lego League, and service learning.