California university providing iPad Air bundle for 35,000 students

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Up to 35,000 first-year and transfer students in the California State University school system will receive an iPad Air bundle to use throughout the entirety of their undergraduate program.

The new program, dubbed CSUESS (which stands for California State University Connectivity Contributing to Equity and Student Success,) is designed to create more equitable conditions and opportunities for students at CSU.

The university points out that half of all CSU undergrads receive Pell Grants — grants that are awarded to students who display "exceptional need" — and nearly a full third are the first in their family to pursue a bachelor's degree.

"CSUCCESS will assure that students have immediate access to innovative, new mobile tools they need to support their learning, particularly when faced with the lingering effects of the pandemic," said CSU Chancellor Joseph I. Castro. "The new initiative will establish a foundation for their achievement and has the potential to play a key role in eliminating stubborn equity gaps among our talented and diverse students. In addition to truly addressing equity and access, we see iPad Air as a powerful tool to prepare our students for their future careers."

Apple's Vice President of Education and Enterprise Marketing, Susan Prescott, spoke on the news of the initiative as well.

"At Apple, we believe that education is a powerful force for equity and opportunity, and that technology can empower all students to achieve their goals," she said. "We're thrilled that iPad Air and the incredible education apps in the App Store will be central to the experience at CSU campuses across California, and will play a part in the learning and career development of students from Humboldt to San Marcos."

Students who register for the initiative will receive an iPad Air, Apple Pencil, and a Smart Keyboard Folio. Students must be first-year students or transfer students coming to one of CSU's eight campuses.

In 2020, Apple highlighted how the iPad can help students of all ages overcome educational challenges. The tech giant showcased a school that used the iPad to teach eighth-graders how to tend to the school's community garden.

School staff in West Virginia recently convinced the Berkeley Board of Education to begin the switch from school-supplied Chromebooks to iPads. The board unanimously voted to provide the school system with 180 iPads distributed to teachers as part of a pilot program.

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