The Delta Grassroots Caucus (DGC) is a broad coalition of grassroots leaders in the eight-state Delta region. DGC is also a founding partner of the Economic Equality Caucus,
which advocates for economic equality across the USA.

Information on One Way to Expand Broadband to Underserved Areas in the Delta

Posted on April 16, 2009 at 12:16 PM

As part of our ongoing efforts to disseminate information about the Recovery Act, below is a message about the Edgenics organization’s activities in helping expand broadband access in the Greater Mississippi Delta Region. Dr. Robert Dansby of Edgenics is frequently a participant in Delta Caucus conferences and his organization is involved in meritorious work aimed at expanding broadband access for underserved areas in the Delta.

We would like to get this information out in particular to school districts and other stakeholders in the Delta. Edgenics is especially interested in working with school districts that hold Educational Broadband Service (EBS) Licenses who: (A) are located in underserved and/or unserved markets; and (B) are interested in establishing commercial sub-license agreements. As explained below, Edgenics has been working with the USDA Rural Utilities Service since 2002 to deploy core broadband network and data center facilities to support distance learning programs and other initiatives. The ARRA indeed offers an extraordinary opportunity in this field.

We are helping distribute this information to our email network and website at as a public service in promoting the advancement of the Delta region.

Dr. Dansby’s contact information is included at the bottom of the message. Please contact him if you are interested in developing broadband partnerships. –Lee Powell, executive director, MDGC


The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 offers an extraordinary opportunity to expand Broadband capacity by building networks in partnerships with school districts and other local stakeholders. Since 2001, Edgenics has been working to deploy broadband networks in order to:

1) improve student achievement; 2) establish college and career oriented academic programs that foster continuous improvement; 3) create sustainable models for providing broadband networks and distance learning application services in rural areas; and 4) develop new business opportunities for EBS Licensees.

As school districts and EBS Licensees consider strategies for building out broadband networks, we ask that you consider partnering with Edgenics. Edgenics secured approval from the USDA Rural Utilities Service in 2002 to deploy core broadband network and data center facilities to support distance learning programs and other business initiatives. Edgenics received $11.17 Million of funding, from the USDA RUS Distance Learning and Telemedicine Program in December, 2007, for Phase I its national deployment. This funding was based on plans originally approved in 2002. Using this USDA funding, Edgenics has completed the deployment of core broadband network with data-center / network facilities with points of presence in five states. Edgenics is implementing broadband core networks, local broadband networks as well as valued added e-Learning applications that make productive use of broadband for education in school districts.

Edgenics has also implemented an academic program, called the Edgenics Digital Journalism Program, for six high schools and learning centers. The purpose of this pilot Edgenics Digital Journalism Program is to provide an interesting and market-focused curriculum for students who will become proficient or skilled in selected areas of digital technology used in the convergent media industry. These students will become well prepared to pursue business and professional careers in Digital Journalism. The Digital Journalism Program is being provided initially as a high school program that combines traditional methods of instruction with leading edge e-Learning approaches. The Digital Journalism Program includes innovative courses being developed in collaboration with experts from universities, technology companies and the media industry. The Digital Journalism program features:

–Fully accredited high-school courses offered by public school districts

–Rigorous academic programs aligned with state academic standards

–Courses that fulfill university pre-requisites

–Courses that match-up with professional certification requirements

–On-Line course material to enhance traditional instruction

–After School and Extra-Curricular Programs

–Intensive summer programs offered in cooperation with participating universities

–Internships at corporations and universities

–Advisory and Mentoring Programs

In addition to course content, Edgenics has provided each participating school with a Media Lab (Computers, Local Area Network and software for the Media Lab classroom) that is used by students and teachers for creating and editing digital media content as part of the instructional process. We also provide broadband network connectivity to interconnect the Media Lab facility with the secure national broadband network that supports collaborations among students and teachers at various schools.

The ARRA strongly encourages partnering in order to achieve the benefits of joint work efforts. Edgenics would like to partner with school districts and Educational Broadband Service (EBS) Licensees to secure additional funding to further expand broadband network and related facilities. We believe such partnerships will greatly accelerate the deployment of broadband services in underserved and unserved areas. Such collaboration is also an opportunity to generate new jobs based on career oriented educational programs that would be implemented under the Enhancing Education through Technology [EETT] Program.

By partnering, we can help to expand the availability of broadband networks. Edgenics seeks to partner with school districts, EBS Licensees, and other stakeholders, to submit application(s) for broadband funding under the ARRA. We invite interested school districts, EBS Licensees, and other stakeholders, to contact us to discuss partnering opportunities. Thanks for your consideration.

Robert E. Dansby, Ph.D.
Edgenics 253 Main Street 211 Matawan, NJ 07747 Phone: (732) 887-5535 eMail: