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Broadband funding Economic Development Education Telehealth

$7 Billion for Broadband

United States Relief Package

Funding to help improve broadband in the US is coming. States, communities, counties, and cities need to have a framework to apply for this opportunity.

In North Carolina these frameworks can include:

  • NC Broadband Infrastructure Office
  • NC Councils of Governments or county COGs
  • Tribal Groups
  • Rural Electric Cooperatives
  • Tele & Cable Companies
  • Wireless Internet Service Providers
  • Local Broadband Providers
  • Internet Satellite Providers
  • Universities and Colleges
  • Cities and Municipalities

In the Metro Asheville area, there are two entities that advocate for broadband improvements for our economic future:

  • WestNGN for Buncombe, Madison, Henderson, and Transylvania Counties
  • WNC Broadband Project for North Carolina’s western counties

Learn More About the $7B for Broadband

Margaret Harding McGill. (2020, December 21). COVID relief bill provides $7 billion for broadband access. Axios

https://www.axios.com/broadband-access-covid-relief-bill-7-billion-5be48439-c1a4-4927-a0c4-515312a1d281.html

Kelly, M. (2020, December 21). US relief package provides $7 billion for broadband. The Verge.

https://www.theverge.com/2020/12/21/22193133/us-coronavirus-covid-relief-stimulus-package-broadband-huawei-zte

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Advocacy Broadband access Broadband in WNC Digital Divide Digital Inclusion Digital Inequality Economic Development Education

Homework Gap

Now a Learning Gap In Rural America

I am already shocked. As a father of two digitally-connected children, I know first hand of the significant value of having broadband available. The digital value is having computers available, the knowledge of how to apply computers, with broadband being available on demand, to engage with society for knowledge, communication, health, and more.

Additionally, having volunteered at several area schools and community centers, I see the digital divide. If students don’t have broadband available at home, immediately the student is disconnected from our digital world of learning opportunities.

The pandemic has made getting computers and internet connections to households with school-age children a priority. The “homework gap” is sizable. Before the pandemic, some 16.9 million children under the age of 18 lived in households without wireline internet service and 7.3 million live in homes without a desktop, laptop, or tablet computer. What was a homework gap is now a learning gap.

John B. Horrigan

Digital Tools & Learning. (2020, December 10). Benton Foundation. https://www.benton.org/blog/digital-tools-learning

Also See


The author of this article, Marc Czarnecki; helps to minimize the rural divide in America by supporting the WNC Broadband Project.

The WNC Broadband Team advocates for the necessary broadband improvements for our #digitallives.

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Asheville Asheville City Schools Broadband in WNC Buncombe Digital Equity Economic Development Education Henderson Madison Speed Test Transylvania

Connect K-12

Classrooms no longer have chalk boards. Children do have technology everywhere. Technology requires bandwidth. Digital tools are important for tech-infused educational growth. Adequate high-speed internet is needed for our schools future.

The homework gap is personified when there is digital inequality.

Broadband Speeds / Student

To enable digital learning in every classroom every day, the FCC recommends 1Mbps per student.

How do our bigger K-12 compare?

Connect K-12 has some current, free data for review:

Connected Nations Podcast

Learn more about digital equity for our WNC children.

Listen to this Connected Nations podcast.

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/connected-nations-podcast/id1508008735#episodeGuid=Buzzsprout-6692588

Advocate for Broadband

The Western North Carolina is advocating for broadband for all residents.

Digital inclusion is critical to our economic future!

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Broadband access Broadband in WNC Community Development Digital Divide Economic Development Fixed Wireless Broadband Starlink

Fast Company

FC Is Talking About WNC

Yes Fast Company is talking about Western North Carolina.

What is the Fast Company? They are a leading business media brand, with an editorial focus on innovation in technology, leadership, world changing ideas, creativity, and design.

And Western North Carolina, is rural America; attractive for technology, leadership, changing ideas, creativity, and design.

But, WNC lacks a dependable and fast internet infrastructure for the future for everybody.

WNC – Lifestyle

If broadband can be increased in rural areas, it would have a dramatic impact, both for people currently living in those areas and for people who are looking to shift their lifestyle away from the cities or the suburbs and move to a more rural location.

Brie Reynolds, the Senior Career Specialist at FlexJobs

WNC – More Living Space at a Lower Cost of Living

Two-thirds of remote workers are interested in moving out of the city in order to enjoy more living space and a lower cost of living. However, 67% indicate that internet availability affects their decision, and 36% said a lack of access to broadband internet is preventing them from making the move.

Study by SatelliteInternet.com

More About Our Nation’s $80 Billion Problem

https://www.fastcompany.com/90578964/rural-internet-broadband-access

Help the WNC Broadband Project advocate for a brighter future.

Contact a member of the project team today.

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Broadband access Broadband in WNC Co-Ops Community Development Economic Development FTTP Madison

Rural Electric and Telephone Co-Ops

“Cooperatives Meet the Needs of People They Serve”

Laying fiber optic cable underground is expensive. Additionally, fiber networks are needed to support community networks. What is a potential solution towards getting fiber to the premise?

In Madison County, the French Broad River Electric Membership Corporation starting implementing fiber internet service for future needs.

FBEMC will provide Fiber To The Premise (FTTP) of:

  • 4056 people
  • 189 farms
  • 64 businesses
  • 2 fire stations

Also See

https://www.frenchbroademc.com/fiber/

https://www.citizen-times.com/story/news/madison/2020/07/31/federal-grant-key-internet-expansion-madison-county/5556412002/

http://broadbandbreakfast.com/2020/10/national-rural-education-association-advocates-for-universal-home-broadband-access-to-assist-rural-students/

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Broadband access Broadband funding Broadband in WNC Community Development Economic Development Education Policy

Call-To-Action

WNC Broadband Activism

Western North Carolina has a ‘Call-To-Action’ from our recently published ‘2021 Broadband Policy Priorities.’

Your WNC Broadband Project team continues to be engaged in community, city, WNC county, and regional broadband topics. Our activism needs your support. How?

The Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated and continues to demonstrate the critical need for universally available and affordable high-speed broadband internet access for delivering quality remote education, telemedicine, and work-from-home capability.

Policy makers must lead an initiative to solve the WNC “digital divide” between the wealthy and the under-resourced and between our urban and non-urban residents.

Given the importance of broadband and the growing digital divide in our region, policy makers must create enabling legislation and policy that will ensure universally available and affordable broadband now.

Your Broadband CTA

A broadband policy maker is someone who sets the plan pursued by a government or business.

For broadband topics, your Call-To-Action or CTA is to communicate and follow-up with your network of policy makers including:

  • Government Officials in the City, County, Region, or State
  • Community Leaders in Education, Economic Development, Healthcare Professionals
  • Business Leaders

All policy makers need to effectively create plans. The acceptance of a plan is based on the feasibility including the financial and legal considerations.

What are the broadband issues that should be on a policy-maker’s radar?

Top 5 WNC Broadband Issues

The WNC Broadband Project Leadership team has summarized the top five WNC broadband issues.

Learn more at our 2021 Broadband Policy site.

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Broadband access Broadband funding Broadband in WNC Broadband Technology Digital Divide Digital Equity Digital Inclusion Economic Development Education Policy Telehealth YouTube

Broadband, Biden

Broadband Breakfast Live

The election is behind us. What does the future of broadband have in the future with the Biden Administration?

Listen to the discussion on broadband and the FCC policy future:

  • Drew Clark – Telecom Attorney, The CommLaw Group; Editor and Publisher, Broadband Breakfast, Washington DC-Baltimore Area
  • Scott Wallsten – President and Senior Fellow at Technology Policy Institute, Washington, District of Columbia
  • Mark Jamison, Ph.D. – Research & Education Director, Gainesville, Florida
Broadband Breakfast Live Online on Wednesday, November 11: Broadband and the Joe Biden President-Elect Administration
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Broadband in WNC Digital Inclusion Economic Development Philip Cooper

Appalachia Strong

What is Philip Cooper’s most powerful hashtag with the environment of the Appalachian Regional Commission‘s contributions toward economic development?

#AppalachiaStrong

The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) is an economic development partnership agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 420 counties across the Appalachian Region, including Western North Carolina. ARC’s mission is to innovate, partner, and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia.

Togetherness and a calls-to-action to improve the Appalachian areas.

Philip Cooper
Appalachia Strong – Philip Cooper

More from Philip Cooper on Broadband

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Digital Divide Digital Inclusion Economic Development Philip Cooper

Economic Development

‘That’s what you call digital inclusion baby’

A simple laptop with broadband connectivity provides economic development opportunities for employment, businesses, and nonprofits. Philip Cooper talks about his business, ‘Hire Powered Staffing’ and it’s future evolution to ‘Hired Power WNC.’

But those that are socially and economically disconnected from opportunities, there is no digital inclusion. For entrepreneurs like Philip, no office is needed. A computer, smartphone, and internet access are Philip’s office.

Philip also introduces Amanda Jo Murphy, Executive Director and her program at Reconnecting – https://www.facebook.com/reconnectingreentry – Laptops for Reentry, a non profit that she started – https://www.reconnectingreentry.com/ ,

To help with digital inclusion, please consider donating laptops for Zoom meetings, job search, soft skills training through Goodwill, and NC Works.

Philip Cooper talks about how laptops and internet connectivity provide economic development opportunties.

#ApplachiaStrong

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A-B Tech Economic Development Philip Cooper

Change Agent

Philip Cooper

During Philip Cooper’s employment at our local community college, Philip became a ‘Change Agent’ for his work in the human resource development area. Carrying that further, Philip opened his own consultancy, ‘Change Agent Cooper LLC’ to help in gaps and disparities.

Philips talks about how broadband and social media help to communicate upcoming trainings, job fairs, and information to friends. Inspire or retire is his hashtag to help personal and professional development. He defines social media with his personal calling and careers.

Philip Cooper talks to Marc Czarnecki about how he uses ‘Change Agent’ online

Previous Segments

Introduction to Philip Cooper the Xennial

Connecting with People with Hashtags