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ASU relaunches laptop loaner program

All students enrolled in classes this semester are eligible to pick up a laptop from the University's limited supply

Laptops are available for students on a first-come, first-serve basis through the newly reinstated laptop loaner program.

After ending it in the Fall 2021 semester, ASU has reinstated its laptop loaner program in a limited capacity, according to a University spokesperson. All students currently enrolled for classes in Spring 2022 are eligible to receive a laptop.

The ASU Library website says students who currently loan out a laptop must be prepared to return the device at the end of this semester, and laptops with Windows 10 OS are the only ones being offered.

Students can go to the University Services Building on the Tempe campus with their student ID card to request a laptop. Laptops are given on a first-come, first-serve basis and cannot be reserved. Students must go during pick-up hours, which are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The University initially launched the program in Spring 2020 after classes moved entirely online for the rest of the semester due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The program also continued for the 2020-21 academic year as the University launched ASU Sync, an option for students to attend class virtually through Zoom if attending in person was not possible.

ASU Sync was put on pause once in-person classes resumed in Fall 2021, and the University Technology Office began prompting students to return their loaned devices.

In an email, UTO announced all loan extensions had concluded as of Dec. 17, 2021, and said Jan. 12, 2022, was the last day for students to return their devices before ASU would take "additional actions" to retrieve them.

However, in early January, the University relaunched the program, and some students are still finding a use for the loaned laptops despite all classes being in-person.

Pavan Mallina, a graduate student studying computer science, said the laptop loan service helped him save money and was more convenient than continuously going to the University's libraries or computing sites.

Having access to a personal laptop is "severely" important as a computer science major, Mallina said. 

As of January 2021, ASU had used over $3.5 million from its CARES Act funding toward the program. Since the start of the pandemic, the University has loaned out more than 7,500 laptops and hotspots, a University spokesperson said Wednesday.

In November, before UTO relaunched the program, Nathan Corwin, executive director for service operations at UTO, said the returned laptops that were no longer sustainable would be sent "to ASU Surplus Property for sale to the public."

Jamon Hill, ASU's assistant vice president of supply chain and deputy chief procurement officer, did not say how much each laptop would have been sold for.

"These funds are used to cover the cost of collection and disposition of used assets such as labor, transportation and sales expenses," Hill said. "ASU Surplus property works closely with ASU Zero Waste to ensure we are meeting or exceeding ASU goals related to waste reduction and recycling."

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Jasmine KabiriAssignment Editor

Jasmine Kabiri is the assignment editor at The State Press, overseeing and editing stories produced by the six digital desks. She has previously worked as a reporter at The Daily Camera and Cronkite News.

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