BOSTON -- Ever since Alexander Graham Bell's shouts to Thomas Watson flashed over wire in a Boston garret, Massachusetts has been a hub of telecommunications activity. Now, more than 100 years later, Bell's progeny--Bell Atlantic--is bringing new telecommunications technology to Massachusetts schools.
The company is providing $75,000 in grants to support NetDay, a statewide initiative to wire K-12 schools for access to the Internet. On NetDay, Oct. 25, Bell Atlantic will provide $40,000 in telephone wire, supplies and other resources needed to wire schools in about 15 communities around the state. In addition, employee volunteers will spend the day connecting classrooms.
Bell Atlantic also is underwriting Internet training sessions and developing local technology mentoring groups for teachers under a $15,000 grant and partnering with the Massachusetts Computer Using Educators (MassCUE) -- an organization of educators who support the use of technology in schools. Up to 400 teachers are expected to attend the MassCUE training sessions in December at 19 sites statewide.
Additionally, a Bell Atlantic grant of $20,000 will allow the Mass Networks coalition to develop network management training for school administrators.
"Education is the bedrock on which our communities and, ultimately, the Commonwealth's economy are built," says Bill McIntyre, Bell Atlantic president and CEO for Massachusetts. "Our success depends on the success of our schools. So, we invest in education on many levels, through our corporate philanthropy, community relations initiatives and employee volunteers."
Bell Atlantic has been a supporter of NetDay since the program was launched last fall. The company's contributions are part of Bell Atlantic's ongoing support of technology and educational initiatives.
Earlier this year, Bell Atlantic announced $500,000 in EdLink Awards to technology projects in Massachusetts which focus on school-to-career efforts by teachers and local community partnerships.
This fall, the Bell Atlantic Excellence in Education Program awarded $1.5 million to secondary school programs that use technology to change the way teachers teach and students learn.
Bell Atlantic annually earmarks about two thirds of its philanthropy budget in Massachusetts for educational initiatives. The contributions program focuses primarily on K-12 activities, targeting "at risk" students, math and science learning, teacher development and technology in the classroom.
Bell Atlantic: Prior NetDay Support
NetDay 1 -- October 1996
$25,000 - Mass. Networks Coalition
$25,000 - Mass. CUE (Computer Using Educators)
$53,500 - Local Funding and Volunteer Initiatives
Boston, Brockton, Lowell, Lawrence, Lynn, Marlboro, Medford, Melrose, Middleboro, New Bedford, Norton, Southeast Regional Vocational School, Tewksbury, Waltham
Announced $500,000 Massachusetts EdLink Award RFP to use technology in school-to-career initiatives
Produced 5-point statewide videoconference
Staffed Help Desk with technical support
NetDay 2 -- April 1997
$500,000 - Announced winners of Massachusetts EdLink Awards 18 projects selected to receive grants ranging from $4,000 to $50,000
$10,000 - Mass. Networks Coalition
$39,500 - Local Funding and Volunteer Initiatives
Boston, Arlington, Chelmsford, East Bridgewater, Fall River, Berkley, Easton, Somerset, Blackstone Valley, Douglas, Sturbridge, Haverhill, Danvers, Methuen, North Andover, Topsfield/Boxford, Marshfield, Norwell, Harwich, Sandwich, Holbrook, Hatfield
Staffed Help Desk with technical support
The new Bell Atlantic - formed through the merger of Bell Atlantic and NYNEX - is at the forefront of the new communications, information and entertainment industry. With 40 million telephone access lines and 5.5 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 21 countries.