G.A.I.N. – powered by Lowe’s
Bank of America, Divergent IT and American Tire Distributors volunteers delivered an O365 and SharePoint migration to S.T.A.R.S. Math & English Academy through Apparo’s G.A.I.N. program. As a result of this project, S.T.A.R.S. anticipates increasing operating efficiencies and improved data.
S.T.A.R.S. improves students’ foundational skills in math, English, and reading using a balanced curriculum that focuses on academic rigor while enriching these subjects with soft skills. Last year, S.T.A.R.S. provided academic enrichment for 176 students in 86 Charlotte-area schools through Virtual Math Camp and Virtual EOG Boot Camp programs.
S.T.A.R.S. has completed the next journey of G.A.I.N., an Apparo program generously sponsored by Lowe’s and EY. During this phase, S.T.A.R.S. partnered with a volunteer team from Bank of America, Divergent IT and ATD to assist in migrating the organization’s email to Microsoft Office 365, setup a basic SharePoint site and implement the file structure for storing documents. This project is generously sponsored by Duke Energy Foundation and Piedmont Natural Gas. The G.A.I.N. program is generously sponsored by Lowe’s and EY.
As a result of the migration to Microsoft O365 and SharePoint, S.T.A.R.S. anticipates the ability to operate more efficiently and securely. S.T.A.R.S. expects to expand their use of O365 to take advantage of the program’s full functionality, including enabling self-service resources for constituents and utilizing forms. Building out and implementing the use of forms will streamline the program enrollment process, reduce registration errors, and improve student tracking and reporting. Accurate academic, demographic, and qualitative information will allow S.T.A.R.S. to tell the powerful stories of their impact with the community and potential funders, leading to an overall increase in program reach.
Tawruss Sellars of S.T.A.R.S. shared, “Without this project, migrating to Office 365 and implementing SharePoint would have been a great idea but not something we could achieve in a timely manner. We are a small team and having a self-service approach for processes through O365 tools will allow us to focus on S.T.A.R.S. programs and impacting our community.”
Project volunteers included Oneaka Mack, Daphne Tillman and Ernest Kwan, all from Bank of America, Matthew Galimi from Divergent IT and April Penn from ATD. Together with Apparo, the volunteer team contributed 140 hours delivering a project worth $27,300.
Bank of America volunteer, Ernest Kwan, was excited to share about his experience on the project, “I learned a lot about how technology can be a lever to help non-profits grow in our community. I am honored to have played a role in partnering with passionate and capable S.T.A.R.S. employees and implementing a collaboration system that will help the non-profit grow in the long run. In addition, working with Apparo and volunteers in another company was a great joy.” Fellow volunteer, Daphne Tillman, added, “I’m thankful to have had the opportunity to volunteer and collaborate with the project team members.”