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Students learning to design web page

Rebecca Burk / L’Observateur / April 8, 1998

LAPLACE – In addition to the many computer classes the New Wine Computer Center already offers, another has been added to the menu of items students can add to their plates.

Kirk White, an Internet specialist for Shell Offshore, volunteered to teach a class on designing Web sites and writing HTML.

“He heard about what we are doing and volunteered to teach a Web developer class that will teach students how to make their own Web pages,” Neil Bernard, pastor at New Wine, said. “He said he would like tooffer his services to give something back to the community.”White, a Lutcher native who lives in Reserve, said that teaching the class is sometimes tough because of the hours he keeps. “I get up at 4:30 in themorning and have to be at work at 6:30,” he said. “To teach the class iskind of a strain, but I wanted to do it.”The class, which is very challenging, offers students the chance to learn everything they ever wanted to know about the Internet.

“One of the goals of the class is to have a Web page that they can put on the Internet,” White said. “They will have a diskette with the page on itand they take it to their Internet provider and can get it on the Web.”Although challenging, White said that the course was for everyone, whether they had computer skills or not. “As the course progresses theywill see that it is a mixture of understanding the scripting,” he said. “It’sa lot of common sense.”White also said students can go at their own pace. “I’m going to give themas much information as they want,” he said. “If it gets too technical theycan break out, but they can push it and learn more if they want to.”The class has met twice and still has about five more meetings left. Thesessions are an hour-and-a-half each from 6:30-8 p.m. every Monday night.There are 15 people enrolled in the Web development class now, but Bernard said there is room for six more and late registering students wouldn’t miss any hands-on learning.

“Most of the hands-on stuff hasn’t been covered yet, so you can still get in the class and take advantage of it,” Bernard said.

Each class only costs a $25 registration fee, which covers the price of the instruction manual, Bernard said.

“People would not normally get to take these classes basically at a bargain,” Bernard said.

“It’s a steal,” White agreed.

Bernard said that the class has been a quick success so far.

“It’s been going well,” Bernard said. “These are the types of things thatpeople in the community want to know and it’s great.”This March marked the one-year anniversary for the center and so far it has seen over 350 people in the community take classes.

“We never thought a computer center would be in such demand here,” Bernard said. “But if you’re going to reach the community you have toprovide practical services.”White who already teaches an HTML class to Shell employees is glad to have another opportunity to share his knowledge. “It’s interesting,” hesaid. “It’s the cutting edge.”

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