Information Possibly Outdated
The information presented on this page was originally released on June 14, 2012. It may not be outdated, but please search our site for more current information. If you plan to quote or reference this information in a publication, please check with the Extension specialist or author before proceeding.
Partnership broadens technology's reach
JACKSON – The quest to improve Mississippian’s lives through digital literacy and better Internet access got a boost on June 8.
Mississippi State University’s Extension Broadband Education and Adoption Team, or e-BEAT, and the Mississippi Library Commission announced a partnership that will provide education and support at local libraries for citizens interested in computers and the Internet. The partnership will officially begin July 1.
The e-BEAT was formed to help research and implement ways to improve Mississippi’s access and use of high-speed Internet to improve community and economic development.
“It is absolutely essential that Mississippians get connected through technology to be competitive in today’s world,” said Chance McDavid, e-BEAT region 1 coordinator. “Libraries are essential community anchor institutions, and that is why we are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with the Mississippi Library Commission on this project.”
Because of the partnership, library staff and the public will receive training from e-BEAT. Local libraries will serve as training locations for the public.
Sharman Smith, executive director of the MLC, said the commission is excited about the partnership.
“Combining the resources of public libraries and the Extension Service is a natural step in better serving Mississippi communities and residents,” she said. “By working together, public libraries and the e-BEAT team can reach Mississippians with the technical training tools necessary to help each individual and to increase broadband adoption across the state.”
The partnership will kick off with a technology academy for library staff aimed at improving their computer skills so they may better assist the public.
“This is a win-win situation for all of us – Extension, Mississippi libraries and all Mississippians,” said Bill Herndon, associate vice-president for the Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine at MSU. “Extension and libraries are both customer-focused organizations, and we want to be able to provide the best services to our clients. This partnership gives us the opportunity to do that, and we in Extension look forward to working with the Mississippi Library Commission.”