12 Communities Selected to Pilot e-Vermont Project
MONTPELIER, VT — A dozen rural communities across the state will receive digital tools and in-depth training as the initial participants in the new e-Vermont Community Broadband Project. The twelve will benefit from the expertise and resources of e-Vermont’s statewide partners as the local groups develop ways to take full advantage of the Internet for job creation, school innovation, providing social services, and increasing civic involvement.
The 2010 communities (selected from over 40 applicants) are Brighton, Bristol, Canaan, Cambridge, Grand Isle County, Ludlow, Middlesex, Newport, Poultney, Pownal, Sunderland/Arlington/Sandgate, and West Rutland.
“Vermonters have a long history of innovation and finding creative ways to meet our goals,” notes Project Director Helen Jordan. “e-Vermont will continue that tradition by bringing 21st century tools to these communities and nurturing the local development of model solutions we can adapt statewide.”
e-Vermont is not stringing cable or fiber, but is working to make better use of broadband where it is available. An unprecedented network of partnerships will contribute to this two-year project.
Each community will become part of the Front Porch Forum network, helping link neighbors to each other and local services.
Digital Wish will bring technology into the classrooms (including a limited number of Netbook computers) and provide essential training for students, teachers, and parents.
The Vermont Department of Libraries will work with local libraries to upgrade computer equipment and enhance e-services.
Students in the Vermont State College system will offer classes and workshops in both public and home settings.
The Vermont Small Business Development Center will mentor businesses to help them increase efficiency and grow their market share through e-commerce.
Best practices that come from these communities will be shared through statewide symposia, on-line applications, and conferences organized by The Snelling Center for Government.
The Vermont Council on Rural Development is overseeing e-Vermont, and will bring its expertise in community organizing to help each town connect its schools, government, businesses, and nonprofit providers in new and exciting ways.
e-Vermont updates are posted at www.vtrural.org. Contact e-Vermont with any questions at 802-223-6091 or eVermont@vtrural.org