News Release Distributed 03/07/13
WELSH, La. – Making an internet connection in rural areas requires some research, but viable options are available.
That was the message at the Connect My Louisiana Southwest Summit held recently (March 5) organized by the LSU AgCenter.
David Moore, of the Louisiana Division of Administration, said the Louisiana Broadband Initiative is a partnership with the LSU AgCenter focusing on bringing Internet service to rural areas of 18 Louisiana parishes, including Jefferson Davis and Allen.
Valerie Vincent, LSU AgCenter family consumer science regional coordinator, said the program includes educational sessions to teach newcomers to the Internet how to use websites to promote their businesses.
Jay Domingue, of the company Radio Communications Service, said wireless Internet service is available in rural areas.
Bertney Langley, of the Coushatta Tribal Heritage Department, said the Internet is being used to teach the tribe’s Koasati language. He said only a third of the tribe’s 900 members currently speak the language, but he hopes the online lessons will boost that number.
Diane Brown, deputy state librarian, said 40 percent of Louisiana households have broadband Internet service.
She said the state library system has a grant program to fund computer training statewide. Included in the program is a laptop computer lending service available in every parish. Other services such as Homework Louisiana provide tutoring to students. Bruce Schultz