Helping the Less Tech-Savvy: IT Students Offer Computer Training to BBB Members

Posted by on May 22, 2013

Students earning their information technology degree at Minnesota School of Business-Richfield (MSB) taught a computer basics class for the Better Business Bureau (BBB) of Minnesota and North Dakota on Wednesday, May 16. The students also belong to the student organization, Richfield IT Association (RITA). The class, which the BBB called BBBasics, was created to help its less tech-savvy members learn how to effectively use the Windows operating system and create their BBB web page.

information technology degree“Tradespeople and service business owners don’t use computers in their line of work regularly and need some help to understand how to use them,” MSB-Richfield IT Program Chair and RITA faculty advisor, Richard Grieman, said. “ When I presented this opportunity to help the BBB, the RITA members really jumped at it. I am really proud of them.”

All 10 RITA members were involved in planning and teaching the class. This large number of people allowed for a nearly 1-on-1 teaching experience, which provided a more learning-intensive, hands-on experience.

Joel Brown, the lead presenter for the BBBasics class, explained how various tasks worked while the rest of the RITA members demonstrated to the attendees how to perform the tasks.

“We put together a PowerPoint presentation on how to use the mouse, save and retrieve files, start applications and use a jump drive,” Joel said. “With a RITA member sitting next to them, they had the opportunity to ask a lot more questions about how to use their machines and get familiar with them.”

“The students are so professional and polite; the BBB members immediately took to them and they began working together,” Sarah Hilliker, Director of Operations at BBB, said. Sarah expressed her amazement at the students’ knowledge and communications skills.

The class was so successful that the BBB is already discussing setting up another course.

“The feedback from our staff and the businesses has been phenomenal and they are clamoring for another event,” BBB Key Account Manager Elizabeth Rose said. “Pairing a BBB member with a student worked very well.”

RITA is furthering their teaching experience by hosting IT Week seminars, educating fellow students as well as faculty and staff members on topics such as the Linux operating system, internet security, and Windows 8 basic information. They’ll cap off IT week with a campus-favorite quarterly event, CTRL-Z computer clinic, where RITA members provide general maintenance, virus removal, and many other services, for free.

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