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K-12 students to benefit from high-speed Internet access

Texas universities collaborate to bring service to children

San Antonio (July 2, 2003) — Homework for students, access to library data bases and collaboration with researchers across the country may soon become easier for Texans thanks to a collaborative effort between Texas universities, including The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA) and The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA). These universities, along with The University of Texas at Austin and Texas A&M University, have provided the funding to make the Internet2 Abilene Network available at an affordable price to K—12 schools, colleges and universities, libraries and museums throughout Texas. The network will allow Texas students to exchange large data files, participate in videoconferences and online courses and perform other class projects without the worry of network tie-ups or interruptions.

A. Jerome York, vice president and chief executive information officer at the UTHSCSA, said in the past only a select few institutions could afford the $200,000 membership price for the network.

The UTHSCSA and UTSA have had access to Internet2 since 2002, when the National Science Foundation awarded both universities a two-year, $150,000 grant to share access with the Southwest Research Institute.

"Internet2 connections have enabled scientists at the UTHSCSA to rapidly transmit and receive large data files relevant to brain mapping techniques and discoveries," said Jack Lancaster, Ph.D., professor of radiology at the UTHSCSA's Research Imaging Center (RIC). "It also has improved accessibility to unique resources and databases at the RIC for other institutions."

"Access to the Internet2 network will be a great help for UTSA as it expands its programs and moves toward premier research university status in Texas," said Jeffrey W. Noyes, chief information officer and associate vice president for information technology at UTSA. "Connection to Internet2 will be invaluable for faculty and researchers as they focus on expanding research into areas that collaborate with colleagues across the country, sharing large data files, remote online control and monitoring of expensive research equipment."

"We are excited that not only can the researchers and scientists at the UTHSCSA and UTSA more effectively engage in collaborative grant opportunities thanks to Internet2, but that our efforts also will enable faculty and students at all Texas universities and colleges, as well as K—12 students, to have affordable access to this very robust and reliable network," York said.

Contact: Will Sansom or Natalie Gutierrez