Altamont student raises $12,000 to buy laptops for EPIC Elementary

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — A Birmingham high school student has raised thousands of dollars to buy Chromebooks for students at EPIC School.

Amrita Lakhanpal volunteers at EPIC once a week after school. She teaches computer skills and coding. While teaching she noticed that some of the school’s technology was outdated and needed repairs.

“I was shocked by the limited knowledge that they had about computers despite the fact that they’re growing up in the 21 century so not having these computers, I feel like it doesn’t prepare them well to face the challenges of a 21 century learner,” said Lakhanpal.

Lakhanpal wrote letters to local businesses hoping to encourage them to donate money for laptops and it worked. She raised $12,000 to purchase 60 new Chromebooks in about a month’s time.

The school has two classroom sets of iPads and computer labs, but the new Chromebooks will broaden the school’s technology base.

EPIC’s principal was beyond excited to find out about the new laptops.

“It has been an inspiration not just for our children but for us as adults to be able to see a need and to just give back,” said Dr. Eleanor Stokes.

Right now, Amrita is trying to raise $4,000 on top of the $12,000 she’s already raised. She hopes to purchase an additional 30 Chromebooks for the school.

She says, it’s easy to do and anyone can make an impact in the community.

“It was just a simple 15-20 minutes a day that helped me accomplish this,” said Lakhanpal.

“As far as I’m concerned, this has been showing our students that you’re never too young to give back and that it takes all of us to help make our community stronger,” said Dr. Stokes.

Amrita plans on starting up a coding club at EPIC soon.

To help Amrita raise the additional $4,000, donations may be dropped off at EPIC for the Screens for Schools program.

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