My library is preparing to submit for a Pepsi Refresh grant. As I was lingering on their site, I am struck by something HUGE. The 21st Century Skills needed for someone in today’s society are clearly present when applying for one of these grants. To apply, and likely win, you need to know how to write some sentences online, create and upload digital photos, navigate the web, and create and edit video. Many people in this country do not have the financial wherewithal to purchase all of the necessary hardware and software to create such media messages. Moreover, citizens do not know how to create or express themselves in this manner.
In reality, the Pepsi Refresh Grant, which I do not fault, silences millions of economically and educational disadvantaged Americans. Peoples voices have been taken away. They have been silenced. They have been left out of the conversation. They have been forgotten.
Messenger Public Library will submit the grant so that people can have access to means to express their voice, and the training and skills to do so.