• Simple Item 5
  • Simple Item 4
  • Simple Item 6
  • Simple Item 3
  • Simple Item 1
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Promise Zone Profiles

KentuckyWired Places Hut for Faster Internet

kywired kamille

By: Kamille Johnson

A new piece of technology is about to change the community and it’s located at Eastern Kentucky University’s Corbin Regional Campus. A special hut outfitted with fiber optic cable is now located at the facility and will benefit communities in Whitley and Knox County.

Kentucky Communications Network Authority (KCNA) created a network to manage a statewide broadband initiative known as KentuckyWired Network. The network is an “open access” network available to partners, cities and businesses for last mile services that are directed to customers.

The main goal is to make Kentucky a national leader for high-capacity internet service, as well as, meeting needs for government locations.

To benefit from this hut the counties and cities have to connect to the entrance and exit ramps to the KentuckyWired interstate. The decision to connect to the ramps is left up to internet providers that will need to build roads through the counties and cities so that businesses can connect to the network and bring more businesses to Kentucky.

Joyce Brewer, The contract manager and site operations of KentuckyWired Network says, “This will also allow the families of eastern Kentucky to have jobs at home. They will be able to train for careers at home, because this high speed network will be available to them. They can also “see a doctor” from home & not have to travel to Lexington to get healthcare.”

The KentuckyWired network has 31 huts across the state with more than 1,000 end points. Some of the endpoints are at Circuit Clerk offices, Libraries, Universities, Community Colleges, and Government Offices.

Construction began in the SOAR region in 2015 and is expected to be finished in fall 2018. The network will then make its way through the rest of the state.

The Corbin hut has 288 strands of fiber optic cable connected through it while the KentuckyWired network uses more than 3,000 miles of network sites statewide. Around 85% of the fiber is installed on poles and the other 15% is installed underground.

There are approximately 70 telecommunications, electric and municipal utilities, for access to poles that are used in the fiber huts. The huts use a system called the middle mile that connects communities such as internet providers or telephone companies. Even though the network isn’t directed towards home usage, it “allows ISPs the potential capacity to increase speeds in your home,” according to the Kentucky Wired website.

Brewer states, “One other very important thing is that KentuckyWired should help drive competition among the local internet service providers. More small ISPs can compete because they can connect to our backbone. They don’t have to spend money to build that infrastructure. We believe this will allow more ISPs in a given area & this should help drive down the cost of internet for all counties.”

“The KentuckyWired Fiber Optic Network is intended to be a middle mile backbone network that is a partnership with all local service providers. We are in this together and it takes teamwork and partnership to make it a success for our citizens,” Brewer explained. Kentucky is ranked 47th in the nation for internet speeds, and Brewer hopes the Kentucky wired project will help the Commonwealth become a national leader.

The fiber hut isn’t just about faster internet, anticipated benefits include economic development, tourism growth, higher education advances, interconnected public safety, enhanced health care, improvement on government service delivery and enhancements for connectivity for libraries and communities.

More information can be found at the KentuckyWired website, http://kentuckywired.ky.gov/about/Pages/def.aspx

Williamsburg Drinking Water One of the Cleanest in the State

The Williamsburg water department was recently recognized for its clean drinking water. The department was awarded its eighth consecutive Area Wide Optimization Program (AWOP) award from the Kentucky Environment and Energy Cabinet.

Chris Brewer, supervisor of maintenance for the Williamsburg Water Department, explains why the award is important. “What it actually means to everybody here in Williamsburg is that the people of Williamsburg have the cleanest drinking water available in the state of Kentucky.” Williamsburg Water Department was one of 36 water treatment plants to receive the award.

Williamsburg Water Department officials say what makes them unique is that they pump their water off of a river, a technique that no longer used by many departments.

In order to receive the award, the water in the plant was tested every four hours and it had to fall underneath the federal standards for surface water treatment plants. Brewer says the department’s water was not anywhere close to exceeding the standards.

In addition to receiving the AWOP award for eight consecutive years, the Williamsburg Water Department also received the Kentucky Division of Water’s Champion award in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2015.

Through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency the AWOP is an administered multi-state initiative. AWOP’s purpose is to encourage drinking water systems to achieve the optimization goals that are more stringent than the regulations.

Read more at: https://www.thenewsjournal.net/wburg-drinking-water-among-states-cleanest/

Aurthur Canada- Knox County

lynncamp canada

By: Ashley Franklin, Lynn Camp High School

Students at Lynn Camp High School are preparing for the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Stronghold Competition, that is to be held in the spring. FIRST Stronghold is a robotic quest in a medieval setting. The goal is to breach opponents' forts, weaken defenses, and capture towers using catapults and balls. The students have six weeks to build a completely autonomous robot – which means it drives itself.

Arthur Canada is the coach that leads the way. Canada is the technology education teacher at Lynn Camp High School in Knox County. He is on his 28th year teaching, and is currently the coach of the engineering club. Like any club, it requires after school participation, however, his students go above and beyond. During the competition season, his students will work on the robots every day after school and on Saturdays.

“These students are dedicated, they even come in on snow days 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.,” said Canada.

Canada gives all the credit to his students. He is very proud of all their accomplishments during the season, he carries a broken robot fragment from last year’s competition on his keychain.

Lynn Camp is teamed up with two other high schools in Knox County, and is part of a program that only has nine teams in the state.

Canada is preparing students to be tomorrow’s engineers. The middle school even has an engineering club that builds LEGO robots, that catapult balls into goals.

Engineering is a difficult and competitive field. It requires intense schooling, but it offers a promising future. Canada's students have expressed interest in University of Louisville's Speed School, mechanical engineering and chemical engineering.

Canada is dedicated to teaching his students essential, versatile skills. Computer coding is necessary knowledge required for operating their robots, it is a trade his student must learn in their free time.

“It’s so important, I think kids should learn coding as early as elementary school,” said Canada.

Acting as a teacher, coach and an experienced role model, Canada has shaped our region by giving his students the skills they need to be successful in the future.

Elwood Cornett- Letcher County

elwood cornett2

By: John Ison- Letcher County Central High School

Elwood Cornett is a former educator and administrator for Letcher County Public Schools. He then went to serve as the director of KVEC (Kentucky Valley Education Cooperative) for 25 years. He is currently the president of the Letcher County Education Foundation and serves as a member of the Letcher County Planning Commission. Cornett was born in the mountains of Eastern Kentucky and, like many others, he experienced many difficulties growing up. He said the hard part about growing up in the mountains was the isolation. However, he never let the mountains be a barrier to him. Cornett uses the work ethic and determination he formed as a young man to do excellent work for the community.



Our FB Feed