Oakland Promise Provides 800 Laptops to Scholars Continuing Their Postsecondary Education

Eyonnie Scott June 12, 2023

College Completion


Media Contact: Eyonnie Scott, [email protected]


Oakland Promise Provides  800 Laptops to Scholars Continuing Their Postsecondary Education 

The move comes in partnership with Tech Exchange, an Oakland-based non-profit organization dedicated to closing the digital divide in the Bay Area

Nearly $400,000 in funding for the laptops comes made possible through the City of Oakland’s Children’s Initiative 

OAKLAND, CA – June 12th, 2023 – Oakland Promise, a leading cradle to career non-profit organization committed to transforming the lives of Oakland students, is thrilled to announce 800 laptops have been provided to support Oakland Promise Scholars continuing their postsecondary education. The laptops will be provided in collaboration with Oakland-based Tech Exchange, who specializes in providing refurbished computers from local technologies to Bay Area students. The funding for the computers is derived from the City of Oakland’s Children’s Initiative, a ballot measure passed by Oakland voters. 

Recognizing the crucial role technology plays in academic success, Oakland Promise aims to bridge the digital divide and provide equitable access to educational resources for students from the Oakland community. The 800 laptops will empower deserving students with the necessary tools to thrive in their postsecondary studies. 

Oakland Promise remains committed to its mission of creating a thriving Oakland community without barriers to educational opportunity. By empowering students with laptops, the organization is taking tangible steps towards leveling the playing field and providing equal opportunities for academic success. 


“As an organization that is deeply rooted in the Oakland community, we are thrilled to partner with Tech Exchange and the City’s Children’s Initiative to provide laptops for our scholars continuing their postsecondary education,” said Sandra Ernst, CEO of Oakland Promise. “Access to high-quality technology is essential in today’s digital age, and we are proud to stand alongside our partners to play a role in closing the digital divide by equipping students with the tools they need to succeed.” 

“The City is honored to support these young scholars. In today’s digital world, access to a laptop is an essential tool for academic success and for these recipients will alleviate the burden and reduce just one of barriers on their post-secondary path. Overall, providing students, particularly low income and/or first-generation students with a laptop helps level the playing field and empowers them to fully participate in the digital age of education. It enhances their academic success, digital literacy, and networking opportunities, ultimately improving their chances of obtaining a degree and pursuing their desired career paths” stated by Jennifer Cabán, Children’s Initiative Accountability Officer.

“Tech Exchange is very proud to continue to support the very important work of Oakland Promise by providing access to devices and tech support to the 900 graduates and scholarship recipients of the 2023 class!” shared Ulises Zatarain, Executive Director of Tech Exchange. “Oakland Promise has been a long standing partner of Tech Exchange, and a champion in providing access and opportunities for Oakland Students. We know that scholarships, and counseling is vital for students to have college to career success; along those same lines access to technology and reliable internet connectivity is also vital to their long term goals, and the overall quality of life of their families. Oakland Promise continues to be at the forefront of supporting our Oakland youth and families comprehensively. We are honored to support their mission and work.” 

Oakland Promise’s commitment to the community is made possible by the generous support of donors, partners, and volunteers. Their dedication to creating a brighter future for Oakland’s students is transforming lives and fostering a thriving educational ecosystem. 

Oakland Promise support is available to young learners (from newborns to college students) and their families who reside in Oakland. Oakland Promise offers every child the financial resources, educational programming, mentorship, and a supportive community to help them and their families, from birth and throughout their school years, to seek out and thrive in the higher education and career of their choosing. These holistic educational services are provided through four core cradle–to–college and career programs at each stage of a young person’s development: Brilliant Baby, Kindergarten to College, College Access and College Completion. Through these programs, Oakland Promise offers College Savings Accounts (529s), the Oakland Promise Scholarships, financial guidance for parents and students, college building culture programs and critical resources to empower students to develop their college and vocational bound identity and persistence. For more information, visit oaklandpromise.org or contact us at [email protected].

The Oakland Children’s Initiative (Measure AA) is a 2018 Charter Amendment passed by the citizens of Oakland to deepen our early investment in children and support them through college graduation, by dramatically expanding access to high quality preschool and providing college access, mentorship, and scholarship support services for students to obtain 4-year or 2-year college or technical degrees. It will leverage over $30 million in annual revenue to dramatically expand access to and the quality of preschool, as well as significantly increase college enrollment and college graduation rates. For more information on the Initiative visit: https://www.oaklandca.gov/boards-commissions/childrens-initiative-oversight-commission