Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Storehouse Food Bank Project Launch

It is the end of the quarter for the Managing Technical Teams class and the student groups are launching their projects. The one requirement given was that "it must make a contribution to the community utilizing technology".

They have done a great job this quarter. One of the deliverables to me was a press release. Below is one of the teams releases, which resulted in their getting an article in a local paper there. I may post a few more when I have the time.

University of Washington Tacoma Students Reach Out to a Small Covington Food Bank

Covington, Washington, 2/14/2012 - Tuple Thunder Technical Team, a team of University of Washington Tacoma (UWT) students, reached out to the Storehouse food bank of Covington Washington to upgrade their database technology and provide on online presence. This upgrade in technology will allow the Storehouse to expedite their food tracking donations.

Since late 2006 the Storehouse has been using an older dilapidated database to track their distribution records. The software was out of date and no longer effective. A member of Covington Christian Fellowship Church, Brad Urich, had written a new software program in 2010 but the Storehouse was lacking technical knowledge to transfer information from one database program to another. The purpose of UWT Students effort’s demonstrated the ability to harness information collection, and to streamline data collection.

The Storehouse never had an online presence thus making it difficult for churches and families to share information about current donation programs and events. The UWT Students created a website to provide a forum to disseminate informational flyers to family's and supporting organizations and announcements of future events.

A recent contract with Home Depot of Covington donates damaged or closed out items to the Storehouse. The UWT students prepared a new MS Access database to specifically track the donation of Home Depot items.

If there are individual people and/or families in need and are within or near the Covington area, the Storehouse will provide basic food items, no questions asked. The Storehouse has been around since 1999 and continues to this day.

The students of UWT in the Information Technology and Systems program are required to take a variety of course that prepare them for real life experiences in the workplace. Amongst these courses is TINST490, Managing Technical Teams. Although this course edges towards the less technical side of the program, student will still be gaining essential skills that will prepare them for future situations. Students are learning to organization, communicate and facilitate in teams while providing a positive contribution to the community through the use of technology.

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