LEWISTON — The Lewiston Public Library, in conjunction with the Downtown Education Collaborative, will sponsor a pair of free programs this month on using technology to assist in finding or keeping a job.

Amanda Morrison will lead a “Basics of Microsoft Excel” workshop from 10 a.m. to noon Friday, July 24. Excel is a computer spreadsheet program that simplifies tasks such as accounting, designing a schedule, creating a budget or making graphs and other visual aids.

“Knowing how to navigate Excel is helpful both at work and at home,” said Morrison, who is a teaching assistant in the computer science department at Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania, where she is entering her junior year. She points to Excel proficiency as a marketable skill that employers often seek.

Morrison will offer a user-friendly tutorial on how to enter information into a spreadsheet, use simple formulas and functions, format data and create basic charts and graphs. While no previous experience with spreadsheet software is necessary, participants should be familiar with computer basics and keyboarding.

Kevin Kilborn will conduct an introductory session on “LinkedIn: Online Networking for Professionals” at 10 a.m. Monday, July 27. A computer programmer analyst with many years of experience in technology, Kilborn touts the networking tool LinkedIn for its potential for opening the door to a professional future in many career fields. The LinkedIn Web site describes it as offering inside connections for those looking for a job or a new business opportunity while also providing access to a wealth of industry experts willing to share advice on current endeavors.

“I use LinkedIn myself,” said Kilborn, “and find it an invaluable resource in keeping tabs on colleagues and opportunities.”

Kilborn’s hour-long program will cover how to set up a LinkedIn account, an overview of LinkedIn features and tips on how to use LinkedIn for professional networking. Participants are invited to linger longer if they’d like, in order to use LinkedIn to practice Internet navigation skills and begin networking

Both the LinkedIn and Excel Basics programs will take place in the LPL computer lab, located on the second floor of the library. Each will be limited to 15 participants so as to provide everyone with an individual computer work station. In order to guarantee a space, those interested in participating should call the LPL Reference Desk at 513-3135 to register in advance.

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