Baltimore Urban League Opens State-of-the-Art Community Technology Center with $25,000 Grant from Bell Atlantic

Baltimore Urban League Opens State-of-the-Art Community Technology
Center with $25,000 Grant from Bell Atlantic

New Center to Help Park Heights Residents Move from
Welfare to Work

April 28, 1999


Noni Faruq,
Baltimore Urban League


Sandra Arnette,
Bell Atlantic


BALTIMORE -- The Baltimore Urban League will expand its
Communities On-line network by opening a technology center at
the Enoch Pratt Library in Park Heights. The center is made possible in
part by a $25,000 grant from Bell Atlantic - Maryland.

Communities On-line is a neighborhood network dedicated to
empowering and educating communities through technology. It helps
residents of public and assisted housing and the community at large to
become self-sufficient, employable and economically self-reliant.

The state-of-the-art technology center announced today will have
networked computer workstations with access to the Internet and other
information services for on-line research and programs. The site also will
have facilities for videoconferencing and distance learning, and it will be
linked to the Baltimore Urban League's technology center on Orchard

"Through our partnership with Bell Atlantic, this community
technology center supports our mission -- to help African-Americans and
other minorities obtain social and economic equality," said Roger I.
Lyons, president and CEO of the Baltimore Urban League
"Knowledge of emerging technologies enhances the opportunity for
members of our community to compete and succeed in a global economy.
We are very grateful to Bell Atlantic for making this center possible and
stimulating our drive to lead the less fortunate in our communities into the
information age."

In 1997, the Bell Atlantic Foundation presented the National Urban
League with a
$1 million grant to help establish inner-city technology centers throughout
the northeast. At that time, Bell Atlantic - Maryland announced a separate
supplemental grant of $25,000 targeted toward supporting the Baltimore
Urban League's welfare-to-work programs at the technology center.

"New technology continues to revolutionize business, education,
health care, government operations and social service delivery," said
Sherry F. Bellamy, president and CEO of Bell Atlantic - Maryland.
"Access to technology is critical for the future development of our
community and its participation in our national and global economies. We
are excited to partner with the Baltimore Urban League, a dynamic leader
in providing access to the vast universe of information and preparing
urban communities for future challenges."

The Park Heights center will offer on-line training in word processing,
database management, spreadsheet applications and the Internet. General
Equivalency Diploma (GED) preparation and resume writing courses,
which traditionally have been instructor-led, will shift to self-study,
computer-based training -- affording students of all ages more hands-on
experience with personal computers.

"In the future, the Park Heights technology center will offer on-line
interviewing with potential employers, accessibility to the Internet for on-
line job searching, specialized computer-based literacy software and
computer application training," said Stephanie Thompson, president
of Communities On-line.

Since 1924, the Baltimore Urban League has been committed to its
mission to promote, encourage and assist African Americans and other
minorities in the Baltimore region in enhancing their social and economic
conditions. In pursuit of its mission the Baltimore Urban League
facilitates collaboration and cooperation among public and private
agencies, organizations, businesses, labor unions, and local, state and
federal governments. The Baltimore Urban League is governed by an
interracial board of 26 members representing the public and private sector.

Bell Atlantic is at the forefront of the new communications and
information industry. With more than 42 million telephone access lines
and 8.6 million wireless customers worldwide, Bell Atlantic companies
are premier providers of advanced wireline voice and data services, market
leaders in wireless services and the world's largest publishers of directory
information. Bell Atlantic companies are also among the world's largest
investors in high-growth global communications markets, with operations
and investments in 23 countries.

The Baltimore Urban League can be reached at http://www.bul.org.