There are so many ways to share the value proposition for rural broadband, many of them of social and “quality of life” important. But let’s also be very clear, broadband access is a huge economic driver domestically and internationally and that momentum has no end in sight. But it’s also easy to simply acknowledge that fact and move on at the 10,000 foot level – so a huge shout out to NTCA’s Foundation for Rural Service for digging deeper into the analysis and creating time for a comprehensive discussion during NTCA’s upcoming Legislative and Policy Summit in a few weeks.
For members who are waiting for a Wednesday afternoon flight or other interested parties, FRS will be hosting a presentation and discussion on the morning of April 17th at the Capitol Hill Hyatt Regency on Rural Broadband and the Next Generation of Jobs. Our very own (articulate and funny) Joshua Seidemann, VP of Policy, will present a Smart Rural Community paper on the changes in the U.S job market and the implications that has for rural education and jobs. I’m looking forward to then moderating a roundtable featuring several industry experts who will discuss how they are helping educators and students alike keep up with the ever-changing job market. There’s certainly a lot to talk about in this arena and I feel very passionately about the need to have a special focus on rural job creation with the goal of increasing awareness of the resources available to rural communities to advance opportunities and the quality of life across our country. After all, access to good jobs is what will keep the best and the brightest back in the communities they grew up in and ensure a vibrant future for rural America.
I certainly encourage folks to stop by that Wednesday morning for a 9 am start (doors open at 8:30 and I am certain that caffeine will be found…at least I personally hope so!) and if you know that you want to join us – just let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org or 703-351-2026. However, don’t let the lack of advanced planning get in your way. You are sitting in the Hyatt lobby, suitcase in hand and you get that annoying and all too common text message from your airline informing you of a delay, please come on down and add your two cents to the discussion. Think of it as a multiplier factor – your two cents could be part of a much bigger value to the rural economy!