Conference announces broadband grant

    Florida A&M students and residents of Tallahassee are the beneficiaries of a $1.5 million grant that the U.S. Department of Commerce gave to FAMU to establish a Center for Public Computing and Workforce Development.

      FAMU held a press conference, on Oct. 6, at 10: 30 a.m., on 1600 Wahnish Way, in the M.S. Thomas Industrial Arts Laboratory building to announce the grant.

      President James Ammons introduced the event with a speech.

 “FAMU is now posed to make a substantial contribution to our state and nation regarding business development and strengthening skills of North Florida potential workforce,” Ammons said. ” The ability to have broadband increase will provide opportunities to our department Division of Enterprise Information Technology and local communities at a large.”

      The  $ 1.5 million will provide new computers, software, upgrades, public access workstations, teacher’s salaries and training for others who are interested in new forms of technology, according to Robert Seniors, principle investigator and vice president for the FAMU Division of Enterprise Information Technology.

      “Broadband has exposed FAMU to the world,” Seniors said. ” Broadband changes lives.”

      Seniors said the upgrade of computer technologies will create special opportunities for FAMU, including web casting and high quality videoconferencing. The grant will allow for facilitating dialogue with government representatives and training for residents in the new age of technology. It will help to decrease the rate of unemployment in the community and for professors to communicate with other schools online.

      “In my opinion, the signature piece set FAMU apart from other Universities or schools,” said Dawn Holley-Dennis, associate professor and chair of the Department of Workforce Education and Development in FAMU College of Education.

      “The signature piece of the grant proposal, included how we were going to use the money, who will be able to using the technology and how can you help improve the community.”