New Star and Comcast NBCUniversal Launch New Tech Coaching Center for Special Needs Adults and Their Families

On Tuesday, June 20th, New Star staff and representatives from ComcastNBCUniversal hosted a hands-on Tech Time Open House from 10am to 11am at New Star’s Chicago Heights location. The open house launched New Star’s Tech Coaching Center, which offers classes designed to help individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities use technology to achieve greater independence. New Star staff included Erica Gibson, day training administrator, who is facilitating the program, and Jennifer Wojcikowski, chief development and communications officer. Comcast NBCUniversal representatives included Debra Marton, senior manager of Community Investment, Yohan Fernando, senior manager of Government Affairs, Amy Winchell, senior specialist of External Affairs and Amanda Vallejo, director of Public Relations.

Open house attendees tried out New Star’s newest iPads, iPods and Abilities apps, registered for Comcast NBCUniversal Tech Coaching and learned about Comcast NBCUniversal’s Internet Essentials program, which provides low-cost Internet service to eligible low-income families. One lucky participant won a laptop, generously donated by Comcast NBCUniversal.

“Comcast is proud to support New Star’s mission, which is to ‘provide choices and opportunities for persons with disabilities and their families’ through innovation and caring,” said John Crowley, senior vice president of Comcast’s Greater Chicago Region. “Our hope is that the Tech Coaching Center will help the children and adults New Star serves achieve their personal goals and live more independently.”

New Star’s Tech Coaching Center is part of a three-year national partnership between Comcast NBCUniversal and The Arc, which advocates for and serves people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD). The partnership enables Comcast NBCUniversal and The Arc to achieve their shared goals of expanding technology resources for people with I/DD to ensure everyone has the tools to reach his or her greatest potential.

“This open house offered us a great opportunity to let our consumers and families know about the many ways New Star is incorporating technology classes into our daily programming,” said Dan Strick, New Star president and CEO. “We are grateful for Comcast NBCUniversal’s ongoing support of our efforts to expand our consumers’ access to and mastery of this technology.”

For more information regarding the Open House or to learn more about New Star’s Tech Coaching Center, please contact Jennifer Wojcikowski, chief development and communications officer, at (708) 841-1071, extension 232, or visit New Star’s website at

About New Star

New Star is a 501(c)(3), not-for-profit organization that resulted from the 2016 merger of New Hope Center and SouthSTAR Services. New Star’s mission is to provide choices and opportunities for persons with disabilities and their families through a culture of innovation and caring to enrich their lives and maximize their independence. Collectively, we offer our clients and their families over 110 years of history and experience in job training and employment, daily life skills enrichment, senior care, residential services, and special recreation to over 650 children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, residing in the Chicagoland area and Northwest Indiana.

About Comcast

Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) is a global media and technology company with two primary businesses, Comcast Cable and NBCUniversal. Comcast Cable is the nation’s largest video, high-speed Internet and phone provider to residential customers under the XFINITY brand and also provides these services to businesses. NBCUniversal operates news, entertainment and sports cable networks, the NBC and Telemundo broadcast networks, television production operations, television station groups, Universal Pictures and Universal Parks and Resorts. Visit for more information.

With more than 7,000 local employees, Comcast’s Greater Chicago Region ( serves customers in central and northern Illinois, including the Chicago area, Northwest Indiana and Southwest Michigan. “Like” Comcast’s Greater Chicago Region on Facebook by visiting @Comcast. “Follow” Comcast’s Greater Chicago Region on Twitter at @ComcastIllinois.

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