Texas A&M University Deploys Advanced Communications From Verizon Business

COLLEGE STATION, Texas - Texas A&M University faculty, students and administrators will benefit from the reliability and flexibility of advanced communications services provided by Verizon Business.

Under a three-year, $20 million renewal of its master services agreement, Verizon Business will provide traditional voice and data network services, cabling, and managed services.  Under separate agreements, Verizon Business will also migrate the majority of Texas A&M's operations to voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) while also providing the university with advanced audio-conferencing services.

The agreements build on Verizon Business' decades-long relationship with one of Texas' flagship universities. 

(Note: A podcast on how the Texas A&M University is deploying advanced services on campus is available here:)

Verizon Business is currently working with the university on the first phase of installing VoIP to new buildings on campus. The university has a goal of installing 3,000 lines in a half dozen buildings this year and in about 10 more buildings targeted for next year. Ultimately, Verizon Business will help the university migrate the majority of its campus from its existing time division multiplex (TDM) network to a next-generation VoIP platform.

"Our traditional copper infrastructure was more than 50 years old in some areas, and we needed a long-term solution," said Dr. Walt Magnussen, director for telecommunications at Texas A&M University. "By deploying state-of-the-art voice-over-IP technology, we can meet the long-term needs of students and faculty at the university for years to come.''

As part of the upgrade of the campus infrastructure, Verizon Business will install advanced switching gear and provide on-site technical support, and managed and professional services.

The new converged VoIP platform can handle large amounts of traffic - voice, data and video - while eliminating the need for separate voice and data networks.

"Texas A&M has long been a leader in using technology to improve the educational experience for both students and faculty," said Troy Cromwell, group president for Verizon Business government and education markets.  "Introducing a new VoIP network on campus provides reliability while positioning the university in the years ahead to quickly deploy new technologies - like notification services or unified communications solutions."

New Tools for Effective Collaboration

To promote effective collaboration on and off campus, Texas A&M will take advantage of a full suite of Verizon Business audio conferencing services, including Instant Meeting reservationless audio-conferencing service available 24 hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week, and full-service operator-assisted calls, depending on the level of support needed. The audio conferencing service includes integration with other useful applications.  For example, Instant Meeting audio conference users also can take advantage of Mobile Conference Connection, a mobile device application, to effortlessly schedule and initiate conference calls from a BlackBerry or Windows mobile smart phone.

Instant Meeting also includes several tools to help increase productivity.  One of those tools, Web Moderator, allows users to manage calls, including the ability to monitor attendance; mute, disconnect or add additional lines; record conferences; and create sub-conferences. Verizon Business also offers audio integration with popular instant messaging (IM) and e-mail calendaring applications.

Texas A&M's Magnussen will host a Verizon Business-sponsored user-group meeting at the ACUTA conference April 19-22 in Atlanta.  Magnussen is immediate past president of ACUTA, the Association for Information Communications Technology Professionals in Higher Education.

The conferencing services are provided under the MiCTA umbrella contract. Verizon Business is an endorsed provider under MiCTA, a nonprofit association that aggregates common services for its members at a competitive price.

Verizon Business is a leader in providing communications services to the public sector. Verizon Business' government and education organization offers state and local agencies and institutions of primary and higher education one-stop shopping for their communications or connectivity needs. The company has built the next-generation services - including IT, security, communications, network and professional services - that are helping to transform the way government customers - and their constituents - do business.

About Verizon Business
Verizon Business, a unit of Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ), is a global leader in communications and IT solutions. We combine professional expertise with the world's most connected IP network to deliver award-winning communications, IT, information security and network solutions. We securely connect today's extended enterprises of widespread and mobile customers, partners, suppliers and employees - enabling them to increase productivity and efficiency and help preserve the environment.  Many of the world's largest businesses and governments - including 96 percent of the Fortune 1000 and thousands of government agencies and educational institutions - rely on our professional and managed services and network technologies to accelerate their business. Find out more at www.verizonbusiness.com.