Surdna

BTOP Projects at Work: Fast Forward New Mexico’s Small Business Success Training

America didn’t invent entrepreneurship - but we sure do love it here.  Even President Obama is getting on the entrepreneurship bandwagon, announcing new programs to spur technology innovation that will lead to new companies being formed and hopefully, more jobs. 

BTOP Projects at Work: Assessing the Effectiveness of Programs

Grant funding can provide essential supports to libraries and non-profits in the face of frozen or shrinking budgets. But without proper metrics, it can be difficult to determine the usefulness and efficacy of funded resources. A non-profit agency in Washington and a library in Maine are two examples of organizations that have developed ways to assess the materials and programming provided by NTIA’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant funding.

BTOP Projects at Work: Developing an Engaging Curriculum

An engaging, tailored curriculum can make all the difference when providing training to people who have had minimal experience with technology. In these communities, the proper training can be a catalyst for change. Two non-profit agencies are using NTIA’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant funding to train communities in Washington and Ohio on computer skills and broadband access.

Need help designing and delivering technology workshops?

Well, TechSoup has a free webinar for you. It seems like it doesn't matter who we talk to--librarians, nonprofits--folks need help with training, and specifically, training about technology.

BTOP Projects at Work: Informing Innovative Training Methods

In remote and underserved communities, training on computers and related technology is often critical to ensure that residents are equipped with up-to-date skills. A non-profit organization in New Mexico and Maine’s state library are using the funds from the NTIA’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant to fund innovative ways to provide necessary training in such communities.

BTOP Projects at Work: Reaching Remote Areas

Broadband provision in remote communities can often be logistically challenging and expensive. Targeted grants are one way to address the access barriers faced by rural communities. Funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (NTIA) Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) provides grants to support the establishment of broadband infrastructure in unserved and underserved areas.

Want to learn from other BTOP grantees?

I'd like to invite you to join us in an experiment.

As part of a grant-funded broadband project, we’ve been chatting with nonprofits and libraries that received BTOP funding. Our number one learning: nearly everyone we've spoken with has expressed a need to connect and share ideas with other grantees. Many said that their greatest "Aha" moments came when they were able to bounce ideas and experiences off of organizations and public libraries working on similar projects.

Keeping kids safe on the Internet: one library's story

The Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library System has put in place an Internet Safety Education Program featuring the NetSmartz Workshop, an animated, interactive, age appropriate software program designed by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.  This educational tool teaches Internet safety awareness to children, teens, parents, guardians, and educators and is available in three grade levels. The one thing that impressed our staff the most was that the workshop is totally self-contained.  A student can work through the entire program without assistance from library staff.

BTOP Projects at Work: Forging Partnerships with ISPs

Remote and low-income communities often have limited choices when it comes to Broadband, and the few options they do have are often cost prohibitive. In these communities, a bit of innovative thinking can make all the difference. Two non-profit organizations are using the funds from the NTIA’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant to partner with ISPs and provide communities in New Mexico and Ohio with Broadband access.