Meet your Digital Navigator, Sarah Radcliffe
One of the key objectives of the Washington County PA Digital Navigator Project is to establish a community-based digital navigator program. In order to accomplish this, Computer Reach, with the help of community partners, hired and trained a Washington, PA county resident to work as the Digital Navigator for the county.
Please meet Sarah…
“My name is Sarah Radcliffe, I grew up in the west end of Pittsburgh and I attended City Charter High School in Downtown Pittsburgh. I went on to college at Washington & Jefferson College where I obtained my Bachelors in History and Political Science. I am now living with my partner and our two cats (Mike & Socks) in California PA which is on the east side of Washington County.
It’s important to be doing this work in Washington County because of the unique challenges it faces as a rural coal county. Oftentimes places like this have limited access to broadband internet or the community members don’t have the means to pay for the available internet; so providing them with affordable internet options can be really crucial. A lot of people in this area also don’t have the disposable income to buy a new computer device or the time to learn how to use them.
That’s another reason these services will go a long way because not only will we provide the community free devices but I will work to meet the needs of each user and I will go to their homes on their schedules and do my best to give them the skills they’d need to continue to grow their abilities on their own. These services will help bring a county of underserved people the tools they need to make their own lives better in a multitude of ways. Bringing this area devices and skills will also help contribute to growing and diversifying their economy which will only help the community as a whole going forward.
My experience within my degrees and previous jobs have helped contribute to my abilities for this job in many ways. Having a history degree allows me to be able to understand where the technological and economic instability stems from and also where fixing those issues can take this community. My political science degree allows me to understand the way this program and others like it work and also how they can be continued at a governmental level. My prior jobs at City Council, the Clerk of Courts, and Target gave me a lot of skills when it comes to dealing with people and especially helping them as best I can. I have not only customer service knowledge but the general empathy and soft skills from these jobs to understand the issues people are having and teach them to the best of my ability.
by Will Perez, Digital Inclusion Director