Richland County residents can learn about improving everything from health to wealth later this month when national and local technology experts convene in Columbia to discuss the implications of expanding broadband Internet.
Most people know broadband – or high speed Internet – is used for online entertainment, such as YouTube and Netflix. But broadband has the potential to improve health care, emergency services, education and economic development. These topics and more will be presented at CONNECTIONS 2015, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, May 13 at a new location – USC’s Darla Moore School of Business.
During the conference, Richland County will be recognized as “America’s First Certified Connected Capital Community” and present its newly created Technology Action Plan.
“As more local governments across the country evaluate their roles as drivers of technological innovation, being the first capital county in the nation to achieve this certification is something we all should be proud of,” said Richland County Council Chairman Torrey Rush. “Broadband access has implications for so many areas of our lives and this certification is the first step for Richland County to look at what we need to do to move forward.”
Richland County, led by community champion Janet Claggett (CIO) and the County’s Information Technology Department, began the certification process in 2013. Findings from the assessment and strategies to improve high speed Internet will be presented at the conference.
Rush will speak at the event, along with other representatives from Richland County. Other scheduled speakers include:
- Tom Koutsky, Chief Policy Counsel for Connected Nation, who will discuss the national view of broadband access including recent FCC rulings.
- Laura Basile, M.D., M.S.P.H, a neonatologist and clinical assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of South Carolina and Palmetto Health Richland. She will describe a project called PulsePoint being planned for statewide deployment.
- Kevin Pondy, Information Technology Manager with the SC Lieutenant Governor’s Office of Aging, will explain how the use of broadband can better assist “vulnerable populations,” such as the elderly.
The conference is presented by Connect South Carolina, the statewide nonprofit promoting the access, adoption and use of broadband. Following the “Richland County Celebration” at the conference, the public is invited to check out demonstrations and visit vendor booths during the Tech After 5 reception.
To register for this free community event, visit www.connectsc.org or call the Richland County Public Information Office at 803-576-2050.