October 31, 2013
St. Edwards University Applies for Google Fiber Service
By Michelle Nicolson
TMCnet Contributing Writer
St. Edwards University – a private, Catholic college located in Austin – submitted an application to become a Community Connection when Google (News - Alert) Fiber launches its service in the area. Community Connections are public and non-profit organizations selected by the city to receive Google Fiber connections at no cost.
Schools, libraries, community centers and other public facilities are commonly selected to become part of the Community Connections program. If chosen, St. Edwards would receive free Google Fiber service on its campus for the next 10 years.
“We put in what I feel like was a great application to get free Fiber as a part of a community connection,” said Rebecca Davis, director of instructional and emerging technology. “We had to make the argument that if we got this, there would be some benefit to Austin in general.”
These benefits were outlined in the application and included capstone projects, library resources, service projects through SERVE Austin and aspects of global learning. Google Fiber service also would expand the university’s ability to connect with partner institutions abroad, offering global digital classrooms.
“We could have classes connecting to four different institutions at the same time,” Davis said. “Having a fatter pipe would mean that we could be running all four of those at the same time.”
University officials reported that St. Edward’s already has the technology and infrastructure necessary to support and distribute Google Fiber across campus.
The city of Austin is currently reviewing over 350 applications from organizations interested in the community connection, 100 of which will be accepted and recommended to Google. The city is expected to come to a decision regarding which neighborhoods will be recommended to receive Fiber by the end of 2013.
According to its website, Google Fiber offers a connection that is 100 times faster than today's average broadband speeds. These speeds enable instant downloads and high-definition TV.
Edited by Alisen Downey
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