Bell Atlantic Brings the Internet to Shamokin and Coal Bell Atlantic Brings the Internet to Shamokin and Coal Township Library

Bell Atlantic Brings the Internet to Shamokin and Coal Township Library

Come On In and Get On-Line

December 16, 1996

Media contacts:

Sharon Shaffer (215) 963-6200


Eager to surf the Net? Want to know what all the talk is about?
Wander over to the Shamokin and Coal Township public library. It now
has an Internet connection open to the public and trained librarians
that can help users explore the wonders of the worldwide network. The
library is located at 210 E. Independence St. in Shamokin.

The new capability is provided through a partnership between Bell
Atlantic and the state Department of Education. Civic leaders and
members of the library board of directors toured the facility at a
ribbon-cutting ceremony on Fri., Dec. 6 that officially opened the new
Internet site.

Initially, the library's Internet connection will be available on a
computer terminal with graphics capabilities in the main reference
area. Anyone may use the terminal during regular business hours on a
first come, first served basis.

Bell Atlantic-Pennsylvania
donated $750,000 last spring to launch " HREF="http://www.ba.com/pa/">OnLine at PA
Libraries." This initiative is connecting 188 public libraries
the state to the Internet, as well as providing hardware and software,
and training librarians to go on-line.

"This project is part of HREF="http://www.bell-atl.com/ba-pa/paadvant.htm">Bell Atlantic's
Pennsylvania Advantage
initiative -- our commitment to improving education, health care and
economic development for all Pennsylvanians," said HREF="http://www.ba.com/speeches/profiles/harral.html">William
Harral, Bell
Atlantic - Pennsylvania president and CEO.

Libraries are ideal sites
for Internet access, enabling individuals to access a multitude of
information sources. Even in Pennsylvania's rural areas, the focus of
this project, no one is more than 10
miles from a library."

Education Secretary Eugene W. Hickok praised the project as a strong
complement to "Link to Learn," Gov. Tom Ridge's $121 million
initiative to expand use of technology in education, including public
libraries. In accepting Bell Atlantic's donation last April, First
Lady Michele Ridge said, "Technology is our link to the future . . .
expanded access to the Internet will empower Pennsylvanians of all
ages with information that educates, improves life skills and connects
them to a world of opportunity."

The Internet is a worldwide "network of networks" with an
forty million users. Because of its low cost and almost unlimited
reach, people of all ages are discovering the power of surfing the
Net. Using simple point-and-click devices, users can find almost any
type of information from the price of a new car to the latest medical
research. They can access government data bases, browse through
museums, or view the universe through the eyes of the Hubble Space

To qualify for the Bell Atlantic grant, libraries submitted an
application and agreed to dedicate an individual for training. The
process was administered by the state Department of Education which
also selected the equipment and coordinated the training. In addition
to OnLine at PA libraries, Bell Atlantic also has presented grants
totaling over $2 million to bring the latest technology to the
Commonwealth's communities and classrooms.

Bell Atlantic Corporation (NYSE:
BEL) is at the forefront of the new
communications, entertainment and information industry. In the
mid-Atlantic region, the company is the premier provider of local
telecommunications and advanced services. Globally, it is one of the
largest investors in the high-growth wireless communication
marketplace. Bell Atlantic also owns a substantial interest in
Telecom Corporation of New Zealand and is actively developing
high-growth national and international business opportunities in all
phases of the industry.