The American Scholar Digital NEST

One Small Step Toward Silicon Valley?


Design rendering of Digital NEST

One chilly evening a year ago, Jacob Martinez spotted an 18-year-old freshman doing homework on a bench outside the Watsonville Center of Cabrillo College south of San Jose, California. The student’s laptop was connected to the school’s Wi-Fi, she said, because she lacked Internet access at home; this was her best recourse.

The answer, called Digital NEST, opened in mid-November. Funding from donors and grant sources has underwritten the first 60 students, aged 12 to 24, and volunteer experts were recruited to teach classes in graphic design, Web development, and video production.

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