To help kick off year three of Internet Essentials, Comcast hosted dozens of community events throughout the country, including in Jackson, Michigan, where program spokesperson and NFL great Tony Dungy visited his alma mater—the Middle School at Parkside. In addition to an engaging discussion with more than 700 students about the importance of Internet connectivity, Coach Dungy used the occasion to announce that the Dungy Family Foundation will donate one year of Internet Essentials subscriptions to all eligible Parkside families. 

In addition, as part of the event, the school hosted a student essay contest on the topic, "How will having Internet access and a home computer help with your school work?" More than 200 students entered, with the winning entry from an excited 7th grader whose essay really brings home the importance of having access to the Internet at home. 

"How a laptop could change my life"

Ethan Huston, Parkside 7th Grader 

Having a laptop and Internet at my house could help me in many ways.  I only get to get to use computers when I am at school, at my uncle’s house and at the library. 

I would use the computer to play educational games.  I like Cool Math and Fried Rice.  I could get better at reading, spelling and math. 

I have a learning disability that makes it hard for me to read and spell.  If I had a computer I would be able to get on websites where I can read and listen to books aloud.  I am not good at spelling and I could use spellcheck to type words better.  I could research words, instead of using dictionaries.  I could type my essays for English and all of my other classes. 

Sometimes I have bad handwriting so I could type the words that I need to write so I don’t make them messy.  I could go on websites that help me type better and have games to help me too. 

I could do research for my classes.  I have to do presentations for Science.  I could look up solids and states of matter and stuff for experiments.  I could watch educational videos like Bill Nye, Myth Busters and CNN News.  I could look up words like my key terms and maps for social studies. 

My whole family could use the laptop and Internet.  My dad does not have the money to buy a laptop.  My dad could check my grades and email my teachers.  He could get stuff for me like materials for school.  

I could be a better student if I had Internet and a laptop because it would make me smarter and make me read better.