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Computers Recycled to Needy Students
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Second-hand computers are to be collected at Shanghai's universities for free distribution to needy postgraduate students, Shanghai Education Commission revealed yesterday.

Computers older than seven years and scrapped by universities can be transferred to student unions for fixing and re-installation. All the repair costs should be covered by universities, the commission ruled.

Without enough money, rural students have to use self-made computers. (photo: Xinhua)

Poor postgraduate students who need a computer for research and assignments can apply for one.

The scheme was set up after a proposal by a member of the Shanghai Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, the city's top advisory body, earlier this year.

Student unions will be responsible for assessing students and distributing the computers, commission officials said.

"We highly valued the CPPCC member's proposal, which provided a good and feasible idea for the placement of state-owned fixed assets," said Yuan Yudi, an official at the commission's office.

At present, computers are scrapped after seven years' use, with most being sold and the money transferred into public funds.

The commission also used to send second-hand computers to rural areas in undeveloped Yunnan Province, officials said.

Zhou Yumin, a professor at Shanghai Normal University and a CPPCC member, suggested the commission use the old computers to aid needy postgraduate students, most of whom rely on a computer for research and study.

"It's a brand new way of subsidy," Zhou wrote in his proposal. "That means students no longer need to empty their pockets to buy computers."

(Shanghai Daily September 14, 2007)

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