In 2014, K12 Tech launched a program called ‘Repair Class Support.” The idea behind this program was that K12 Tech staff could come alongside schools in the pursuit of getting students involved in the repairs and overall maintenance of technology in the school system. One of the most awe-inspiring outcomes of this program has been the story of Mike Hotseller, K12 Tech’s Head of Repair Class Support.
Mike was introduced to K12 Tech at his high school in Beech Grove, IN. “I was a part of the “tech squad” who assisted students with Chromebook troubleshooting. In my senior year, Beech Grove signed on for the Repair Class Support program offered by K12 Tech. A K12 Tech employee would visit my school monthly and teach us how to repair our Chromebook’s hardware, along with other devices.”
Mike first realized his interest in technology during his childhood, through space programs on television. “I had always been fascinated by astronomy and wondered how we could see things so far away. Technology such as the Hubble telescope was the answer, and I’ve been captivated by technology since.”
In high school, it seemed logical to Mike to join the “tech squad.” His training in the Repair Class Support program he described as “enlightening.” “The program taught me how to repair my own Chromebook used by my school. As the year progressed, the K12 employee would teach us about different devices such as iPhones, desktop computers, and even some simple coding using Raspberry Pi. Overall the program was a great gateway into the world of tech.”
For Mike, it was a very direct gateway. Shortly after his graduation, Mike came to work at K12 Tech as a repair technician. He quickly rose through the ranks to become the head of the program that had introduced him to the world of edtech. “The part I love most about my job is being able to meet students and provide them instruction. The best part about the Repair Class Support program, and what I do my best to convey to the students, is that the skills are not limited to just technology. They can take the job skills, such as problem-solving and troubleshooting, and apply them to any field they desire to go in!”
When asked what advice he would give to high school students interested in technology, Mike said, “Pursue that passion. Whether they take technology classes through their school or do their own independent research, the skills they will gain will be invaluable. Technology is not going anywhere, so taking the time to learn about it now will only benefit them in the future.”
Mike’s goal now for the Repair Class Support program is to “transform it into a job experience for the students. Their repairs will be tracked with occasional reviews as I visit the schools. From there, K12 Tech is working to provide benefits to the students such as potential pizza lunches and even a scholarship or sign-on bonus for the best-performing students. Our goal is to promote these students’ interest in technology and offer them a job when they graduate. We currently have 3 former RCS students working for K12 Tech and they are some of our best employees!”