‘Giving back’ is the belief of Dr. Dave and Mrs. Jo-Anne Yearwood, both professors at the University of North Dakota (Dave is now a Professor Emeritus), and also natives of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
Dr. Yearwood conducts research in ePedagogy (technologically enhanced teacher practice) and automatic electronic control systems, and his wife Jo-Anne’s expertise is in Early Childhood and Elementary Education. Dave who wanted to honor the memory of his parents created the Foundation with his wife Jo-Anne to meet the educational technology needs of teachers and students.
The Jewel and Randolph Yearwood Education Technology Foundation, established in 2013 has a governing Board of seven individuals with varying expertise. The seven-person team is made up of individuals with state government and business expertise, a middle school principal, educators at the early childhood and elementary level, a former Dean of the Business College and Public Administration at UND, and technology experts from UND. The Board has thus far, with assistance from local businesses (Blue Cross Blue Shield and Gate City Bank of North Dakota) and individuals from North Dakota in the United States donated some 1023 used and surplus computers to various educational institutions. Recipients of these technologies include:
• Native American communities in North Dakota (ND).
• A local public school.
• Schools in Liberia; Mbabane; Swaziland; Nzerekore in Guinea, Jamaica, West Africa; and Burkina Fasco.
• The Global Friends Coalition group in Grand Forks ND who provide assistance to refugees from Africa.
• Graduate students at the University of North Dakota.
• And two Air Force veterans (individuals who served in the United States Air Force with Dr. Yearwood).
In the case of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Dr. and Mrs. Yearwood requested that new computers be purchased for the SVGCC, specifically the Division of Teacher Education (DTE). The Foundation’s Board approved the amount of approximately $11,500.00 (EC) to purchase 7 laptop computers, computer cases, and 2 digital video display projectors. Two additional used/surplus laptop computers were also donated to the Early Childhood program in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Mrs. Harriette DaSilva, Dean of the Division of Teacher Education oversees the use of the laptops and projection system by DTE students, whether at the college or doing practicum work in schools around St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
The Yearwood’s are currently in St. Vincent and the Grenadines to both observe the 40thyear independence celebrations in addition to conducting three workshops for the SVGCC educators, specifically the Early Childhood Education cohort and also lecturers at SVGCC, Division of Teacher Education.