Second Consecutive Year AMD Supports Southwest Key Programs Charter Middle School

SW Key is always up to big things here in Austin, TX. Check this out:

AUSTIN, TX – (April 6, 2010) – Southwest Key Programs (SWK) charter school, the East Austin College Prep Academy (EACPA), has been awarded two grants totaling approximately $136,000 from AMD and the AMD Foundation.

It is the second consecutive year the Austin based nonprofit SWK and their college prep charter middle school have been singled out for support as part of AMD’s Changing the Game education initiative.

The grants will enable the EACPA to add a new grade and double the number of students participating in the World Wide Workshop Foundation’s cutting-edge Globaloria game-design program. Additionally, AMD will fund a second technology laboratory for students, featuring 30 HP notebooks with AMD processors and ATI graphics.

“Southwest Key Programs are about opening doors and breaking down barriers for children by providing educational possibilities that they wouldn’t normally have access to in their community,” said Dr. Juan Sánchez, President and CEO, Southwest Key Programs. “The AMD Foundation and the Globaloria program had an enormously positive impact on students, inspiring and exciting them to learn. We were able to see students make great strides in their educational accomplishments and technological literacy, which we believe is largely due to this program.”

The World Wide Workshop Foundation is a global foundation for developing educational technology applications that intertwine social media technology and game production. Globaloria is an intensive in-school game development curriculum and social networking platform that prepares students ages 13 and older from underserved communities to use technology to become active, socially conscious global cybercitizens.

The 2010 grants are given in support of AMD’s signature education initiative, AMD Changing the Game. The initiative promotes social issue game development as a tool to inspire youth to learn, improve their science, technology, education and math (STEM) skills, and become more attuned to global social issues such as the environment, energy, public health and poverty.

“Today’s youth are tomorrow’s leaders. AMD Changing the Game and the Globaloria program share a goal of using technology, and particularly game development, to harness students’ curiosity and creativity, boost their confidence, enrich their educational experience and expand their global awareness,” said Allyson Peerman, president, AMD Foundation. “We commend Southwest Key’s East Austin College Prep Academy for being such a pioneer in choosing to make this innovative game design program an integral part of their curriculum.”

“In 2009 we partnered with the AMD Foundation and Southwest Key to launch the first ever comprehensive, school-wide game-design program for STEM learning at EACPA: Globaloria at EACPA. Our strong partnership resulted in a hugely successful program and fueled our desire to expand the program this year,” said Dr. Idit Harel Caperton, Founder and President, World Wide Workshop Foundation. “We are proud to continue working to implement a program that is designed to enhance learning, innovation, entrepreneurship and an understanding of the world among students in the East Austin community.”

The EACPA opened its doors in fall 2009 and is located in an area with historically low educational achievement levels. The school had 92 6th grade students last year and expects to more than double attendance this fall by adding a 7th grade class to its school. With the AMD grant, EACPA will not only continue the implementation of the Globaloria program, but also will establish a second technology lab, and hire a second Globaloria teacher and a full time Information Technology professional to support the program.

About Southwest Key Programs:

Southwest Key Programs is a national nonprofit organization headquartered in Austin, Texas.  It has a staff of over 1,100 employees with a mission to improve the quality of life for children through education, community development, and youth and family services.  In 2008, Southwest Key was formally accredited by the Council on Accreditation, one of the world’s leading human service accrediting agencies.  Southwest Key’s East Austin Community Development Center now serves as a launching pad for increasing the educational attainment and employability of East Austin residents, leading to higher paid employees, increased tax revenues and increased civic and economic engagement of residents.

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