Open Source Stories: What is Penn Manor?

A film about empowering high school students to run their own open source PC helpdesk

Last year we premiered a special short film at Red Hat Summit called “Penn Manor.” Summit attendees helped us make a splash with this emotional story about how open source principles are changing the lives of students at Penn Manor High School. Since then, the program has grown and the film has received more views, accolades, and support from the open source community.


“We chose open source because it amplifies education.”

“We started this conversation with the words ‘We trust you.’”

From day one, Penn Manor HS Tech Director Charlie Reisinger understood a critical open source watchword: trust. Without it, there’s no platform for collaboration and no growth.

“By giving kids truly open technology, it empowers them to understand not only what’s underneath the hood, but to understand that they can impact the world.”

With a core of 4 students — including Ben Thomas, who had once been diagnosed with ADD and told he should not plan to go to college — Resigner set up the building blocks for Penn Manor’s open, student-run 1:1 laptop helpdesk. Ben is in college now. “I’m a little bit ahead of the curve,” he says with a confident smile. “The other students haven’t been exposed to coding or open source.”

“They’re actually active participants in their own education,” Resigner says. “That’s the power of trusting kids.”

“We’re preparing students for jobs that haven’t even been created yet.”

Now it’s your turn.

Stop by the Open Source Stories Theater at Red Hat Summit 2016 to see “Penn Manor: The power of open in education” and discover another place in the world for open source thinking.

Logotype_Event_RHSummit_RGB_RedTHEATER DETAILS Open Source Stories Theater
Moscone West, Level 3
Open daily, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Girl Develop It meet and greet
Thu Jun 30, 4:30 p.m.
Corinne Warnshuis, Girl Develop It

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