Kids spending Friday morning
at the Donald W. Reynolds Boys & Girls Club in Fayetteville tested new and improved hardware and software in the club’s computer lab, thanks to a donation of equipment, supplies and technical assistance from the proceeds of this year’s NWA TechFest. An annual technology conference held in Fayetteville “for geeks, by geeks,” this year’s NWA TechFest was held on May 18 with more than 260 participants. Proceeds from the conference are earmarked to assist STEM-related (science, technology, engineering and math) initiatives in northwest Arkansas. For 2017, the organizers of the NWA TechFest committed to upgrading the Donald W. Reynolds Boys & Girls Club computer lab, and to support the organization’s teen outreach program. A contribution of $4,250 in cash will support the purchase of new desktop computers for the labs, while a grant from the Arkansas Users of Telecommunications and Information Systems (AUTIS) provided computer accessories including monitors, keyboards, mice, speakers, whiteboards and other supplies for educational workshops. NWA TechFest participants will also clean and restore older machines to enhance their usefulness, and install anti-virus software to protect and support the children who use the machines. Additional funds will be dedicated toward obtaining educational software. The refreshed lab will provide access to technology for more than 4,700 club members (age 18 and under) to facilitate their educational growth. Sponsors of this year’s NWA TechFest include J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc.; RevUnit; Blue Zoo; Winters Law Firm; Startup Junkie Consulting; First Orion; Digital Ocean; Qbox; University of Arkansas Global Campus; ABC Financial; Mozilla; Atlas Retail Technology Solutions; Propak; Legacy National Bank; and Zenwork.