Green River lands technology grant

The U.S. Department of Education has announced that Green River Community College’s Computer Reporting Technologies program has received a grant for $285,000 to provide education and training for realtime writers and captioning students.

Green River’s program was the only one of four programs nationwide to receive the grant.

“In today’s bleak economic environment, this is a victory for the program and the college,” said Sidney Weldele-Wallace, an instructor in the program, who credits Sen. Patty Murray with securing the funding.

The grant will allow the program to offer additional scholarships and broaden program marketing for student recruitment and retention. The funds will also help acquire equipment and technology upgrades for Salish Hall, a replacement building for the program’s current home.

In addition, the appropriation will also be used to expand curriculum and faculty development, allow the program to continue professional retraining workshops for working court reporters interested in captioning as an alternative or second career, and provide for community outreach projects serving the local deaf and hard-of-hearing communities. This includes possible research into other benefits of captioning in the educational setting such as literacy development of school-age children to potentially increase standardization test scores and language development for those whom English is a second language, according to Weldele-Wallace.

This is the second federal grant that Green River’s Computer Reporting Technologies department has been awarded. In 2001, the program received $250,000.

The Green River program is the only one of its kind within a five-state radius that provides for the education and hands-on training of realtime writers and captioners, of which there is a shortage in the workforce, according to Lori Rapozo, Computer Reporting Technologies faculty member.

Green River offers classes in Computer Reporting Technologies for summer quarter. Classes begin June 22 and registration is under way. For more information on the program, contact Weldele-Wallace at 253-833-9111, ext. 4705 or by email at Lori Rapozo can be reached at 253-833-9111, ext. 4219 or by email at

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