Connect Nevada Broadband Summit Drives Conversation about State’s Education Future

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Three organizations recognized with Nevada Broadband Hero Awards

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We know what the future looks like. It’s a well-connected classroom, linked to a high-capacity physical conduit with the last connection provided by robust Wi-Fi, with kids on tablets interacting with teachers, fellow students, and digital content.

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Yesterday, Connect Nevada and the Nevada Broadband Task Force co-hosted Learning in the Digital Space, Nevada’s third annual state Broadband Summit, at the University of Nevada Reno. The education technology themed event brought together more than 100 educators, librarians, industry leaders, community organizations, and government representatives to have a discussion on how educators, students, and administrators are integrating technology into the classroom and leveraging broadband to bring equal access to students across the globe.

The event was sponsored by CenturyLink and had a speaker line-up of state and national experts including: Dale Erquiaga, state superintendent of public instruction; Blair Levin, Aspen Institute Fellow and chief architect of the National Broadband Plan, and Anne Neville, director, NTIA State Broadband Initiative, and covered topics such as 1:1 device initiatives, social media in the classroom, and federal broadband programs.

In his speech titled, "Distributing the Future: Which Children Will We Leave Behind?", Levin spoke on the E-rate debate and said, “We know what the future looks like. It’s a well-connected classroom, linked to a high-capacity physical conduit with the last connection provided by robust Wi-Fi, with kids on tablets interacting with teachers, fellow students, and digital content.”

He then asked the question of how long it will take and urged the audience to get involved: “The biggest decision the FCC will make in its proceeding to upgrade the E-rate program is whether all American school children will soon be able to take advantage of transformative digital education, or whether that opportunity will only be available to some, with millions left behind for years to come … I hope everyone here will participate in the process.”

The panels featured leaders from across the state:

Broadband Task Force Update:
Randy Brown, AT&T
Jim Garza, White Pine County

Social Media:
Donica Mensing, University of Nevada
Daphne DeLeon, Nevada State Libraries
Joe DeLappe, University of Nevada, Reno

Tablets/Interactive Devices:
Kim Vidoni, Nevada Department of Education,
Robert Sidford, Washoe County School District
Jennifer Andricopulos & Loretta Asay, Clark County School District
LeAnn Morris, Carson City School District

Broadband and Education:
Spencer Watson, EducationSuperHighway
Scott Lommori, Lyon County School District
Katherine Rohrer, State Public Charter School Authority
Kathryn Kelly, eLearning Cafes, Inc.

To recognize the outstanding contributions individuals and organizations have made to promote digital learning in the state, Connect Nevada created the Nevada Broadband Hero Award. The awards were presented to:

  •     Lyon County School District - School District Hero
  •     Lincoln County - Community Hero
  •     Carson City Library @Two Digital Learning Center, Hop & Mae Adams Foundation - Adoption Hero

“Our goal of this Summit was to challenge and inspire stakeholders to prioritize the sustainable implementation of technology in our schools, homes, and libraries so that Nevada can better prepare its students for the twenty-first century workforce,” said Connect Nevada State Program Manager Lindsey Niedzielski. “We heard a lot of great examples from schools, non-profits, and libraries working to promote learning in the digital space. We walked away with new information about the transformative role technology can and should play in our learning ecosystem.”

To access the webcast, presentations, and photos from the Summit go to

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About Connect Nevada: The Governor’s Office and the Nevada Broadband Task Force are leading the initiative to increase broadband Internet access, adoption, and use across the state. Connect Nevada is a nonprofit organization that was commissioned by the state to work with all Nevada broadband providers, create detailed maps of current broadband coverage, and coordinate efforts with other Federal grant award recipients in the state. Connect Nevada is now supporting the development of a statewide plan for the deployment and adoption of broadband. The goal is to spread high-speed Internet across the state and make sure all Nevada residents have access to its life-changing benefits. For more information visit:

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Jessica Ditto
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