Amrita Lakhanpal is Alabama Bright Light making schools #StrongHER

Amrita Lakhanpal is Alabama Bright Light making schools #StrongHER
Amrita Lakhanpal is still in high school, but she has taken responsibility for improving the education of many Birmingham elementary students through her Screens for Schools program. (Karim Shamsi-Basha/Alabama NewsCenter)

A senior at The Altamont School, Amrita Lakhanpal participates in more activities than most college students. One is with the city of Birmingham.

“Mayor Randall Woodfin’s office reached out to me,” Lakhanpal said. “For Women’s History Month, they are highlighting women who have made an impact in our community. I was so honored they picked me for the campaign.”

Woodfin’s administration launched Birmingham’s #StrongHER campaign to highlight some of the unsung “sheroes’’ living, working, volunteering or inspiring others in the Magic City. Women are being featured on the city’s social media pages every day in March with hashtags of #StrongHER, #BoldHER, #BrightHER, #FierceHER, #SmartHER and #BraveHER because of #HER.

“We live in a city where women are making moves that spark change,’’ Woodfin said. “The women highlighted in this campaign are just an example of the thousands of other female game-changers working to make a difference in our city, our country and the world. I salute them all.’’

 Alabama Bright Light Amrita Lakhanpal shows Birmingham elementary students the possibilities of technology from Alabama NewsCenter on Vimeo.

Lakhanpal started a laptop initiative called Screens for Schools during her sophomore year at The Altamont School to help elementary schools with computers.

“Back when I was teaching computer science at Epic Elementary School, I noticed the lack of functioning technology and the limited access the students had,” Lakhanpal said. “This was hindering the effectiveness of their curriculum and instruction, so I wanted to help.”

Since the founding of Screens for Schools, Lakhanpal supports three elementary schools and has provided them with 60 Chromebooks and two charging carts. She has raised $46,000 for the effort.

“The response from the community has been amazing, and I was able to provide these children with new technology,” Lakhanpal said. “Through Screens for Schools, I have also started coding clubs at the elementary schools.”

Lakhanpal is the SGA vice president at Altamont and has started a Girls who Code club to inspire computer-science education. She also runs cross-country, indoor and outdoor track and is on the tennis team and the dance team.

Bollywood is one of my favorite things to do because it helps me hold on to my Indian heritage,” Lakhanpal said.

Altamont Director of Communications Julie Beckwith said Lakhanpal is passionate about everything she does.

“Amrita is an inspiration at The Altamont School because she invests herself so deeply in this community. She has really set herself up as a model of what an Altamont student can be, and I find her inspiring,” Beckwith said.

Alabama Bright Lights captures the stories, through words, pictures and video, of some of our state’s brightest lights who are working to make Alabama an even better place to live, work and play. Award-winning journalist Karim Shamsi-Basha tells their inspiring stories. Email him comments, as well as suggestions on people to profile, at [email protected].

During Women’s History Month, Alabama NewsCenter is celebrating the culture and contributions of those who have shaped our state and those working to elevate Alabama today. Visit AlabamaNewsCenter.com throughout the month for stories of female Alabamians past and present.

Related Stories