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Exam Code: 500-710 Practice exam 2022 by Killexams.com team
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Perhaps it was Donald Trump refusing to ever admit he was wrong (about President Obama’s birthplace, immigrants, crowd size, weather maps, Russia, Kim Jong-un, climate change, Covid, voter fraud, infrastructure week – it’s a long list), but like avoiding certain things (orange skin, drinking bleach, committing treason), publicly admitting error has suddenly become fashionable. The New York Times recently featured eight “I Was Wrong” columns by pundits like Thomas Friedman, Michelle Goldberg, and Paul Krugman admitting they were wrong about Trump voters, Facebook, Al Franken, Chinese censorship, protests, capitalism, inflation, and Mitt Romney (and his dog). It was fun reading these admissions, although they all followed the same formula: I may have been wrong about this specific issue, but I was still right about the big picture! I only regret the Times wasn’t able to solicit a contribution from Susan Collins.

In this spirit, I have my own admission. Two summers ago – back when Susan Collins was more than a punchline and overt treason was just a gleam in Donnie’s eye – Microsoft and Google announced efforts to calm America’s troubled streets (George Floyd, Breonna Taylor) with free online programs to close the digital skills gap. Microsoft announced new curriculum from LinkedIn Learning and the GitHub Learning Lab and lowered the cost of certifications to bring digital skills to an additional 25M Americans. In Google’s case, it was 100,000 scholarships for new online certificates (data analyst, project manager, UX designer). In a Gap Letter titled The False Allure of Online Training, I lampooned the tech giants, saying “when the problems include racial injustice and generational damage, online training is biting off more than it can chew.” I went on to highlight the fact that neither company planned to actually hire any of the newly trained talent. “Microsoft and Google: if they’re not good enough for you, why should another employer want them?”

So allow me join the ranks of penitent pundits by acknowledging I was wrong to castigate Microsoft and Google for launching online courses (although right as rain about the big picture – skills gap, lack of clear pathways to socioeconomic mobility, death of the American Dream). Doing so violated a principle I hold dear: not letting the best be the enemy of the good. Sure, it would be great if Microsoft and Google could singlehandedly wrench America’s workforce into alignment with employer needs. But that’s asking too much, even for businesses that collectively generate over $200B in annual profit.

I now recognize that casting aspersions on Microsoft and Google is like blaming McGraw-Hill and HMH for what ails K-12 education. Actually worse, because Microsoft and Google have better curriculum. And it’s not just these two. AWS, Salesforce, VMware, Cisco, Oracle, Pega, Appian, Workday, Facebook, Adobe, CompTIA, SAP, Snowflake, and lots of other tech leaders have built out high-quality, skills-based online courses leading to certification exams for the most in-demand digital skills. Besides addressing skills employers want but can’t find, these courses have something else in common. They’re all 100% asynchronous.

In this era of digital transformation, self-paced online courses are just like textbooks: necessary but insufficient. Learners and job seekers who can successfully complete these courses on their own probably don’t need much help getting a good job. They’re not the ones we should be worried about. And for those who don’t yet have a good job – struggling frontline and gig workers without the necessary motivation, aptitude, and preparation to progress on their own (and where life is likely to get in the way even if they hit that trifecta) – I’d bet completion rates on asynchronous tech credentials are below the education equivalent of the Mendoza Line (the MOOC Line i.e., 5%).

Microsoft, Google and the rest can’t be expected to solve this problem. They’re not schools or training companies and will never be (principally because they turn up their noses at low gross margins). But they can recognize the problem. And so kudos to Google, which back in February announced $100M of funding for wraparound services, specifically funding Year Up and Merit America to provide synchronous engagement for job seekers. Wraparound services include instruction (i.e., classes), coaching, and interview prep. And while they have their attention, Year Up and Merit America will also work on soft skills like teamwork and communication. Google’s goal is 20,000 additional (low-income, underrepresented) certificate completers, or $5K per life transformed.

Deploying wraparound services to mine America’s newly discovered motherlode of tech training courseware for the benefit of tens of millions who’ve been shut out of the digital economy also has the potential to fix our broken workforce system. I’ve written previously about state and local workforce boards, which prioritize speed-to-placement and counseling over human capital development and therefore find themselves in a vicious circle of attracting only the lowest skill jobs and job seekers. Now a new service provider is seeking to play the role of Year Up for workforce boards. ShiftUp is delivering similar wraparound services for in-demand tech credentials, dramatically elevating 5% completion rates; ShiftUp is currently over 75% for these in-demand credentials. ShiftUp is now supporting workforce boards in New Jersey, Michigan, and Washington DC. Again, the price tag is in the neighborhood of $5K per life transformed.

With nonprofits and workforce boards taking the lead on making tech credentials accessible and meaningful for displaced and underserved Americans, where are colleges and universities in this pixelated picture? Largely nowhere. Sure, hundreds of schools have signed up for AWS Academy and Pathstream is helping over 30 colleges and universities deliver certifications from Facebook, Salesforce, Tableau, and Asana. But all told, well under 5% of accredited institutions are pairing instruction with any off-the-shelf online courses from tech leaders to create faster + cheaper pathways to good jobs.

Why are colleges missing the boat? First, there are dozens of tech companies. Developing a comprehensive tech credential offering would require going company-by-company. And within a university, who’s set up to do this?

I came to the answer two weeks ago during a tech tête-à-tête with a dean at a Midwestern university. The e-mail discussion involved this very subject: how her university could begin to offer these wondrous new tech credentials. I suggested she’d need to add synchronous instruction in order to make them work for students. Her response:

Synchronous is not quality online education. It is something else but not ONLINE. It is a hybrid and I am not sure why anyone would think that is the way to go. On demand, on your own time is imperative for today's consumer. Like MOOCs this will not last.

Why she cited MOOCs – a model that failed primarily due to lack of synchronous engagement – to make her point is a door I opted not to walk through. But I suggested that if she wanted to reach those seeking to land a good first job, she might take a different view, and cited Google’s $100M investment.

Her response:

I have been in the business a long time, this is the flavor of the month like MOOCs which I knew were not going to last (and a lot more than 100M got spent on MOOCs). We would be happy to create asynchronous versions for our [hundreds of] corporate partners.

And with that clarifying statement, I pinpointed my correspondent: dean of a continuing education division with a mandate to serve corporate partners, make money, and contribute that money back to the core university. She’s serving customers and her customers’ employees are different in many ways from the typical Merit America participant: early 30s with a decade or more working in restaurants and retail. One way in particular they’re different: they’re much more likely to have the motivation, aptitude, and preparation to complete asynchronous online courses unaided.

Unfortunately, if you talk to a college or university about Microsoft, Google, AWS, Salesforce and the like, this is where you end up: the periphery, a borderland known as continuing education. There’s little sense that these remarkable new educational resources could be useful for full-time students or help the institution fulfill its mission. And that’s a shame.

Which leads me to a third reason for university inaction on tech credentials. As Postsecondary Analytics’ Nate Johnson said on last week’s Inside Higher Education (The Key) podcast, amidst enrollment wreckage, there are bright spots in student demand: areas like technology. “But those are the most costly fields for... instruction... You have to hire people who have those skills.”

So even if colleges could figure out how to gather these credentials and somehow activate the core instead of continuing education, they’d still have to find instructors. And where are colleges going to find people to teach AWS, Pega, Snowflake, and Workday? Not from Ph.D programs! Experts are out there, but they’re scarce (hence skills gap). And they’ll be hard for colleges to recruit: they’re practitioners, not career educators, and they’re already making a much better living than career educators. Colleges would have to appeal to their better angels. And to do that, they’ll probably have to figure out how to serve students who really need the leg up these programs can provide.

In response to these challenges, Hire-Train-Deploy leader SkillStorm — an Achieve Partners portfolio company — came up with an answer. SkillStorm entered into agreements with AWS, Pega, Salesforce, Appian, and CompTIA and is setting up white-label tech cert programs for university partners. What SkillStorm calls its Accelerator program solves problems #1 and #3: the first one-stop shop for the most in-demand tech certifications with a large bench of qualified instructors. Then SkillStorm runs synchronous programs (one hour per day, five days per week). By working with multiple colleges and aggregating enrollments, SkillStorm is able to launch cohorts weekly. (The one problem SkillStorm hasn’t solved yet is continuing education; that’s where SkillStorm is plugging in.)

With partners like Pathstream and SkillStorm Accelerator, colleges and universities have no excuse for avoiding Microsoft, Google, and the other companies leading digital transformation. And while higher education will instinctively push these programs to continuing ed, as soon as these programs come online, the appeal for students who’ve paid for longer and more expensive degree bundles will become obvious. As these last-mile skills could not be more meaningful for landing good jobs, core students will find them and either force schools to include them in degree programs or perhaps convince colleges to situate them as building blocks in stackable credentials (e.g., upside-down degrees).

Come to think of it, after unjustly accusing them two years ago, the only one with an excuse for avoiding Microsoft and Google is me.

Fri, 05 Aug 2022 01:00:00 -0500 Ryan Craig en text/html https://www.forbes.com/sites/ryancraig/2022/08/05/i-was-wrong-about-microsoft-and-google/
Killexams : IT services company brings its tech expertise, relationship-focused culture to central Ohio No result found, try new keyword!People Driven Technology, an information technology consulting firm, is making its first foray into the Ohio market. Tue, 09 Aug 2022 00:56:00 -0500 text/html https://www.bizjournals.com/columbus/news/2022/08/09/it-services-company-brings-its-tech-expertise.html Killexams : Top 5 Video Calling Services in 2022

In today's world, many individuals are still relying on video calls to stay connected with their colleagues and acquaintances. While video calls create a more collaborative culture, they are secure ways to communicate with others. Moreover, video calls help to maintain human connections regardless of the location.

Unlike a phone call, a video call lets you view the person you interact with online. So, in this article, we shall cover more about the top video calling applications. As you scroll ahead, you will also know how TrueConf is better than other applications or services.

Which are the best applications that can enable you to make video calls?

When you wish to connect with someone through a video call, you will find many online apps. You can use these applications on the desktop or your mobile phone. So, let's check out the best applications you can use to make video calls.

TrueConf

There are numerous reasons why TrueConf is on top of the list. TrueConf is a self-hosted and secure solution for team chat and audio/video conferencing for up to 1,000 participants. Several collaborative capabilities, including remote desktop control, slideshows, screen sharing, and file sharing, are available during video calls. The audio and video conference can be recorded for later playback. The only people who can access the local storage of all the recordings are the participants. The system gives complete control of the data and can be installed on-premises or in a private cloud. Moreover, users no longer need to waste time installing additional plugins and software because WebRTC support allows them to make video calls in all popular browsers.

The modular approach can also equip the endpoint with AV peripherals. Such a feature can help deliver high-quality videos and clear audio. If you want to control many PTZ cameras in a large conference room, you can do it with the help of TrueConf Weatherwave. Eventually, you can present a proper view when you're the main speaker in the online meeting. Moreover, when you use the PC software, TrueConf Room, it supports the huddle rooms with better video conferencing capabilities. You can easily transform any area into a large boardroom.

Google Duo

Apart from Google Meet, Google has its own mobile app, Duo. While Google Meet was primarily designed for conducting business meetings online, Google Duo is developed for those who use their mobile phones often.

In the past, many people used Google Duo for one-to-one conversations. But, now the mobile app allows you to create groups with 32 people as the maximum number of participants. With this feature taken into consideration, all the participants must have a Google account.

Microsoft Teams

If you're a part of the Microsoft Office Ecosystem, you must always use Microsoft Teams. While this application focuses on carrying out virtual meetings, the company has now moved ahead to unveil a free personal version.

Through such a version, anyone can chat or conduct video meetings in a virtual space. The version allows you to host a meeting with 100 individuals for 60 minutes.

Zoom

As time passed by, Zoom has always been popular among videoconferencing apps. Through the years, the company has presented Zoom only for corporate use. But, after the pandemic, the company proudly offers a free basic version.

Besides sharing the screen, the app also allows you to record the meeting. But, when you conduct a video call with two or more individuals, you only get 40 mins for online interaction.

Cisco Webex

Webex is a videoconferencing app that has always been gaining popularity since the 1990s. But, when Cisco took over Webex in 2007, it was now known as a business application. It's always worth using the free version because you can chat with a maximum of 100 participants.

Moreover, you can interact for only 50 minutes whenever a group meeting progresses. Unlike other applications, Cisco Webex doesn't have an option to record the interaction.

Why should you consider TrueConf for video calls?

  • When considering the software by TrueConf, you can interact smoothly through a one-on-one video conferencing session. You can always perceive the difference when you proceed ahead with secure FullHD or UltraHD video calls. Subsequently, you will be in a better position to capture the meetings so that you can check them out in the future.
  • Once you start using the applications of TrueConf, you can expect supreme video quality. In fact, you will have a great experience with no additional costs. You can also forget complex setups and immerse yourself in the video conference. The audio codec later adapts to the bandwidth, ensuring the best quality even when the internet connection is unstable.
  • With TrueConf, you can always think about collaborating with your team using many collaboration tools. If you want to share the screen or any documents, the software will enable you to do it easily. Once the meeting is over, you can also exchange ideas personally or in group chats.
  • As soon as you commence the video call, TrueConf offers an incredible experience with 60 fps as the frame rate. Throughout the video call, the individuals will feel as though they are in the same room. The distance will never matter as the video call will progress ahead without any disturbances.
  • If you love taking online classes, then you can use the virtual classroom, which is nothing but the ideal mode. While you try to teach confidently, you can use many tools to boost student engagement. The best part of the virtual classrooms is that you can encourage discussions through a few quizzes during the online session.

What are the distinguishing features of TrueConf?

Many features distinguish TrueConf from the most popular video conferencing apps.

  • TrueConf always offers a range of solutions to its customers. These include room systems, cloud solutions, and on-premises solutions. Under room systems, you can set up the Videobar, which serves as the best system for small groups. Besides, you can think about TrueConf Enterprise, which offers a scalable infrastructure when you want to conduct meetings for a large group.
  • After you start using the software by TrueConf, 32kbps is quite sufficient for video communication. In the end, all the participants will have a great experience with good video quality. Apart from everything else, you can also host webinars for guests and unregistered users.
  • The free and the paid versions of TrueConf Server are known for multi-vendor interoperability. This point means you can join the meetings hosted on Cisco Webex, Lifesize Cloud, Zoom, or GoToMeeting.
  • When you start using the TrueConf 2.0 app on an Android mobile phone, you can get smart video layouts and interact through a fresh User Interface. Owing to some features, you will also feel the difference in the meeting experience. The Voice Activity Detection (VAD) will also display the active speakers on the touchscreen.

Summary:

To summarize, many video conference apps are available for online collaborations. But, in that case, you must prefer using the applications by TrueConf because they enhance the meeting experience. Additionally, you can always use some collaborative tools and try to make the communication enjoyable. The video quality will always be good, even when the internet connectivity is poor or unstable. Once you use a mobile app, you can communicate with the help of a unique interface and observe the difference ahead.

Mon, 08 Aug 2022 07:13:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.bignewsnetwork.com/news/272647340/top-5-video-calling-services-in-2022
Killexams : K–12 Schools Implement Connectivity Solutions to Narrow the Homework Gap

Peterson’s story is instructive, but hardly unique. More than two and half years into a global pandemic, school districts continue to struggle with high-speed Wi-Fi and the inequities that result when students and families can’t get consistent and reliable access to essential learning.

As communities adjust to life with COVID-19 and students and teachers return to school full-time, the widening of the so-called “homework gap” — where some learners unwillingly forfeit access to educational content outside of the traditional school day — has IT directors and their teams working overtime to deliver instruction and close learning gaps, especially for at-risk students. Access to reliable broadband remains central to that equation.

How Lynchburg City Schools Uses CBRS to Connect Students at Home

Doing the work is easier said than done — and how you do it often depends on where you live. Whether students hail from rural communities or urban centers, when it comes to digital learning, research suggests the barriers boil down to one of three critical factors: access to hardware or devices, funding levels or network infrastructure.

At Lynchburg City Schools in Virginia, IT Director John Collins says the region benefits from strong broadband coverage.

Unfortunately, in a district with 8,000 students, 63 percent of whom are eligible for free and reduced lunch, that coverage isn’t affordable for many of the community’s neediest families.

“A smartphone internet connection, even if it’s acting as a hotspot, is not enough,” explains Collins, “If you don’t start from the same place, it’s really difficult to climb the ladder at the same rate, or even get on the ladder in some cases. And that’s what access is all about. It’s about giving students what they need so they can grow. In the end, that’s what we’re all trying to do.”

GET THE CHECKLIST: Download a resource for K–12 schools looking to make network upgrades.

Over the years, the district has trotted out a litany of spot fixes to meet its goal of providing adequate high-speed internet access to all students, but those solutions weren’t sustainable.

To extend high-speed coverage to more families and close the homework gap long-term, Collins and the Lynchburg City Schools team recently launched Project WISH (Wireless Service at Home). By tapping into an unused portion of the Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) spectrum reserved for the U.S. Navy, the district plans to use specially outfitted Wi-Fi towers erected on school and municipal buildings to broadcast dedicated bandwidth to students and families in areas where Wi-Fi access remains weak or limited. The first tower was scheduled to go live in May 2022, with more to follow.

Collins says the program, if successful, will go a long way toward helping the district achieve its goal of 100 percent high-speed broadband access for every student.

Schools Explore Datacasting for Students Who Can't Access Wi-Fi 

While two-way, high-speed Wi-Fi remains the gold standard, there are circumstances where that level of access is simply not available or doesn’t make sense for a particular group of learners, such as incarcerated youth or students in hard-to-reach communities.

Ben Smith is assistant director of educational technology for the Lincoln Intermediate Unit, an educational service center serving 25 districts over three Pennsylvania counties.

In addition to several students whose remote geographic locations prohibit access to high-speed Wi-Fi, his team is responsible for delivering educational content to nearly two dozen students in juvenile detention facilities.

As a workaround, the service center is partnering with PBS to transfer files to students over the air using TV broadcast signals.

Called datacasting, the technology works by setting up an antenna connected to a receiver box that acts like a router, where files are posted and stored.

KEEP READING: K–12 leaders speak on equitable education through technology.

“All teachers have to do is drag and drop the files they want to share with students. PDFs and Microsoft Word documents are transferred in minutes. Large, 200-megabit files like videos could be done easily in a couple of hours overnight,” he says.

While datacasting has limitations — it’s essentially an open network that only allows one-way communication — the ability for teachers to post and share files of almost any size means students with limited or no access to two-way Wi-Fi can still access critical learning materials.

Planning Is Key for Schools Depending on Government Funding 

As K—12 schools transition from the special brand of chaos that defined the smash-and-grab innovation of the initial months of the pandemic, administrators have begun to shift their focus from early-stage triage to long-haul sustainability. For its part, the Federal Communications Commission, which runs the E-rate program, launched the Emergency Connectivity Fund in 2021. But ECF — a massive $7 billion relief package designed to help schools and libraries deliver remote learning through necessary hardware and services — has largely run out.

Brian Stephens, client solutions manager at Funds for Learning, which helps schools navigate the funding process, says programs like the ECF were always intended to be temporary. The ECF was created to help lessen the sting of that initial transition. But how schools choose to sustain that technology over the long haul will come down to strategy and planning.

If the goal is to use E-rate funds, Stephens says, school IT leaders must plan far enough out — at least a year in advance — so they know what refreshes in technology are on the horizon and can include those upgrades in a funding application or otherwise budget for them accordingly.

Educators See These Connectivity Efforts as a Start

Back in Washington State, Sunnyside’s Peterson is working on an initiative that will connect even more students in the district. Nicknamed Gemini, the project leverages dark Long-Term Evolution (LTE) wireless and CBRS to create high-speed outdoor Wi-Fi networks that students can access with dedicated Cradlepoint modems. Each network, supported by a tower on a local school building, has a coverage radius of half a mile and brings students into the district’s existing network. The benefit of this setup is twofold: All existing firewalls and security measures apply, and it’s a Wi-Fi extension, not a gift, which makes it eligible for E-rate funding.

“I see what’s happened the past couple of years as an opportunity to push education forward,” says Peterson. “Programs like Gemini won’t get us all the way there, but it’s a start.”

Tue, 19 Jul 2022 07:29:00 -0500 Corey Murray en text/html https://edtechmagazine.com/k12/article/2022/07/k-12-schools-implement-connectivity-solutions-narrow-homework-gap
Killexams : How do you implement an infrastructure bill? UChicago scholar discusses Biden’s plan, and what’s next

Last November, President Joe Biden ushered in a bipartisan agreement that launched the most comprehensive infrastructure plan that United States has seen in more than half a century.

The $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act—the largest infrastructure plan since President Dwight Eisenhower authorized the $25 billion Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956—includes $110 billion to repair roads and bridges and support what the White House calls “major, transformational projects.”

The plan also allots $39 billion for public transit; $25 billion for airport improvements; and $17 billion for port infrastructure and waterways. In addition, it calls for spending $55 billion to expand water access and clean drinking water, and $65 billion to Excellerate broadband internet access, particularly in rural areas.

Those are merely a few of the bigger pieces in a dizzying assemblage of projects that University of Chicago scholar Justin Marlowe has been watching closely.

A research professor and associate director of the Center for Municipal Finance at the Harris School of Public Policy, Marlowe is an expert in the world of public finance—particularly infrastructure finance. He is editor in chief of Public Budgeting & Finance, and is the author of four books and more than 100 articles, book chapters, technical reports and popular commentaries. In addition, he works as an expert witness and consultant to public, private and nonprofit organizations around the world.

In this Q&A, Marlowe discusses how COVID-19 and inflation have impacted infrastructure, as well as attempts to stretch the definition of what is considered infrastructure.

What is the status of work planned under the infrastructure program? Are we seeing shovels in the ground?

Some projects are underway. In June, the White House reported that $110 billion has been released and work has started on more than 4,000 projects. Most jurisdictions are at the point where they have identified projects for the federal money and are going out into the market, trying to hire contractors and get shovels in the ground. But that’s created a serious challenge: It’s hard to find folks to do projects. Contractors are experiencing the same tight labor market that everybody else is experiencing. We’ve even heard a few examples of jurisdictions getting exceptions to competitive contracting simply because there simply are not enough contractors to bid on so many different projects.

The sheer size of this funding is something local officials haven’t dealt with in some time. What issues, other than a tight labor market, are they navigating?

The simple answer is trying to spend a lot of money in a period of tremendous uncertainty and on a tight timeline.

Most jurisdictions have a 5- or 10- or even 20-year capital improvement plan but that was before COVID. Now, the question they’re asking themselves is how have our infrastructure needs changed? What forward-looking capital improvements will be important post-COVID? At the same time, the federal government is requiring thorough reporting and transparency on how the money is spent. But those reporting requirements remain a bit of a moving target. Questions still exist about what exactly needs to be reported and how much scrutiny that reporting will receive.

And the federal government, driven at least in part by election concerns, wants to see projects underway and completed as soon as possible, which is why the government is pushing local and state jurisdictions to spend the money quickly—by the end of fiscal 2023 or into 2024.

Another aspect of this that doesn’t get nearly enough attention is whether the state, county and local jurisdictions can use the federal dollars to upgrade their internal information technology that, in many places, dates back to 1992. They’re still using it to run things like payroll, accounts and HR systems. It’s kind of frightening. Now, with increasing demands for transparency and citizen engagement; with the need to allow employees to work from home, many of those systems are lacking.

But it’s unclear if federal infrastructure dollars can be used to upgrade those systems. Some local governments have decided to spend the money for those improvements and ask for forgiveness later; others are waiting for guidance.

How does this federally funded infrastructure work affect capital improvements already planned in local jurisdictions?

It’s a dilemma jurisdictions face whenever a bundle of money for public improvement suddenly becomes available. Often that money arrives with a clear set of directions on how it should be spent, which is the case with a sizable chunk of funds in this bill. Those projects may not be priorities for a given state or municipality.

But often those projects get built merely because that clear, robust revenue stream exists for them and completing them is relatively straightforward. Meanwhile, higher priorities don’t get done.

So, the infrastructure bill can present a multi-faceted problem—but one that I think most state and local finance folks would rather have than not. They just need to be aware of an old adage in budgeting: The really big mistakes are made when you have a lot of money to spend.

How would you assess the impact of COVID-19 on this infrastructure plan?

You can answer that from a couple perspectives: a direct response to COVID, and a vision of what a post-COVID recovery ought to look like.

We know from how the legislation was created and how the dollars were designated to be used what the clear priorities of the Biden administration are: an emphasis on bolstering public health is one. The City of Chicago’s Bureau of Public Health is a good example. It’s using COVID relief money and funding from the infrastructure legislation to build out technology systems to bolster services like epidemiological monitoring capacity to basically prepare for the next pandemic. A lot of that has been happening across the country—building up the physical infrastructure of public hospitals, clinics, that sort of thing, which were severely depleted with the Great Recession of 2008.

We also know that the Biden administration is emphasizing equity in the way the money is spent—and that means designating a lot of dollars for traditionally underserved communities and placing a priority on accountability and reporting that those dollars are flowing to those underserved communities.

Beyond that, we see that this plan reflects what the Biden administration thinks should happen as we rebuild from COVID. So, we see bolstering electric vehicle charging stations, retrofitting buildings to lower carbon footprints, a lot of building back greener, more efficient, and more sustainable.

Related to COVID impact is a belief that more people will continue working from home. That prioritizes information technology and expanding broadband access especially, again, in historically underserved communities.

What impact will inflation have on the work?

It works in both directions for states and localities. Undoubtedly it makes things more expensive, but they also can hedge and manage that a little. Think about, for instance, the federal government sending you a big lump of money to do a project that’s going to take two or three years to complete. Most state and local governments have a relatively sophisticated system in place to manage that free cash while it’s sitting around. If they’re able to put those dollars in inflation-protected Treasury Securities or something like that, then, at a minimum, they’re preserving the purchasing power of those dollars. So, it’s not a complete loss for states and localities but it does create some additional management challenges.

What is the impact of the Russia-Ukraine war?

Certainly, to the extent that it’s a driver of fuel costs, it can have an impact.

Another thing that’s somewhat under-appreciated is the way that investors all over the world—particularly in Europe and to a degree in China and other places—have close connections with Ukraine. Investors in those countries buy a lot of U.S. municipal bonds; it’s maybe 5 to 10 percent of market share. A sizable portion of that money also has made its way into gas and other utilities throughout Europe, including Ukraine. Since the war started, a lot of that investment has left Ukraine and other parts of Europe that might be affected by further Russian incursion.

So, the question now is what happens to that investment? Some think those foreign investors will seize the opportunity to redirect that investment to China, India, or other parts of the non-Western world that are emerging as safe investments. That might cause a more permanent investment shift away from the West generally and that could create uncertainty for U.S. municipal bonds.

A convoluted chain of events for sure, but an important one.

Is there anything about this plan that is somewhat unknown or under-appreciated?

One important element is the effort to expand the definition of infrastructure during the Biden administration’s attempt to pass the bigger $3.5-$4 trillion social spending bill, which I don’t think they’ve completely abandoned.

During the debate around that legislation, the Biden administration talked about "human infrastructure," which was the first time this kind of spending was framed as infrastructure. It seemed that they were trying to leverage the general support of traditional infrastructure to bolster public support for social spending. It didn’t get much traction, but now the phrase is out there. Clearly politicians want to change the language in a way that is not just semantics. And I think we’re going to see that tactic again.

That change is really, really important to public thinking about these as investments. Soon maybe we’re going to stop calling roads and bridges infrastructure and call them something else.

—This is excerpted and edited from a story first published by the Harris School of Public Policy. Read the full Q&A, including Marlowe's thoughts on the supply chain and how the infrastructure plan might look in the future.

Mon, 08 Aug 2022 00:00:00 -0500 en text/html https://news.uchicago.edu/story/how-do-you-implement-infrastructure-plan-uchicago-scholar-discusses-passage-bidens-bill-and Killexams : Data Center Knowledge Bolsters its Team, Adds Data Center Industry Veteran, Lisa D. Sparks, as Senior Editor No result found, try new keyword!Data Center Knowledge, the leading online source of daily news and analysis about the data center industry, today announces data center industry veteran, Lisa D. Sparks, has joined as Senior Editor. Mon, 08 Aug 2022 03:00:00 -0500 https://finance.dailyherald.com/dailyherald/article/bizwire-2022-8-8-data-center-knowledge-bolsters-its-team-adds-data-center-industry-veteran-lisa-d-sparks-as-senior-editor Killexams : MENA Small Cell 5G Network Market By Latest COVID-19 Impact And Global Analysis To 2030

(MENAFN- EIN Presswire)

MENA Small Cell 5G Network Market

In 2020, the solutions segment dominated the MENA small cell 5G network market.

PORTLAND , PORTLAND, OR, UNITED STATE, August 4, 2022 /EINPresswire.com / -- Increase in network densification, rise in mobile data traffic, emergence of citizens broadband radio service (CBRS) band, surge in investment in 5G infrastructure by numerous countries, and rapid development of 5G infrastructure in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic drive the growth of the MENA small cell 5G network market .

On the other hand, concerns related to fiber backhaul and small cell deployment challenge restrain the growth to some extent. However, rapid adoption of Internet of Things (IoT) and upsurge in demand for ultra-reliable and low-latency communications are expected to create lucrative opportunities in the industry.

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According to the report published by Allied Market Research, the MENA small cell 5G network market was estimated at $13.42 million in 2020 and is expected to hit at $412.54 million by 2030, registering a CAGR of 40.9% from 2021 to 2030.

The MENA small cell 5G network market is analyzed across component, radio technology, frequency band, cell type, applications, end user, and countries. Based on component, the solution segment accounted for nearly two-thirds of the total market share in 2020, and is expected to lead the trail by the end of 2030. The services segment, on the other hand, would register the fastest CAGR of 42.6% during the forecast period.

Based on radio technology, the standalone segment contributed to more than half of the total market revenue in 2020, and is anticipated to rule the roost by 2030. The same segment would also cite the fastest CAGR of 42.4% during the forecast period.

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Based on region, the market across Saudi Arabia held the major share in 2020, garnering around one-fourth of the MENA small cell 5G network market. Simultaneously, the market across Turkey would showcase the fastest CAGR of 46.4% from 2021 to 2030.

COVID-19 Scenario-

•Rise in remote working trend and upsurge in mobile data traffic have made the public & private sectors in the majority of countries adopt 5G infrastructure. This, in turn, has boosted the MENA small cell 5G network market.

•This trend is pretty likely to continue post pandemic as well.

The List of companies profiled analyzed in the MENA small cell 5G network industry report include NEC Corporation, ATANDT Inc., Corning Incorporated, Cisco Systems Inc., Huawei Technologies Co Ltd., Casa Systems, ZTE Corporation, COMBA Telecom Systems Holdings Ltd., Nokia, and Ericsson. These market players have incorporated different strategies including partnership, expansion, collaboration, joint ventures, and others to brace their stand in the industry.

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•The report presents information related to key drivers, restraints, and MENA small cell 5G network market opportunity.

•The MENA small cell 5G network market size is quantitatively analyzed from 2020 to 2030 to highlight the financial competency of the industry.

•Porter's five forces analysis illustrates the potency of buyers & suppliers in MENA small cell 5G network market forecast.

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1. M2M Satellite Communication Market

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Thu, 04 Aug 2022 18:33:00 -0500 Date text/html https://menafn.com/1104650439/MENA-Small-Cell-5G-Network-Market-By-Latest-COVID-19-Impact-And-Global-Analysis-To-2030
Killexams : 3Cloud Recognized by ChannelE2E and Channel Futures as Top Managed Services Provider

CHICAGO, Aug. 8, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- 3Cloud's rapid growth and continued innovation in managed services was recognized by two prestigious organizations, Channel E2E and Channel Futures, naming 3Cloud as top managed services provider globally. 3Cloud's Managed Services practice experienced over 100% year-over-year growth from 2020 to 2021.

"3Cloud is honored to be recognized for the growth our Managed Services team has made in the breadth of services offered along with our vertical offerings," said Mark Nelson, Vice President Managed Services. "3Cloud recognizes that to provide the Ultimate Azure Experience, our customers require innovative and secure Managed Services allowing them to focus on their critical business priorities while we handle their infrastructure, application, and data analytics support. We are proud to have our Managed Services team recognized for their passion and expertise provided to our customers."

The annual Top 100 Vertical Market MSPs list and research, according to ChannelE2E (hashtag: #MSP100) identify and honor the top 100 managed services providers (MSPs) in healthcare, legal, government, financial services, manufacturing and additional vertical markets. 3Cloud was ranked among the top vertical market MSPs in the Financial Services vertical.

This year's research revealed several key MSP business, security and market trends. Key takeaways include:

  • Surging MSP Revenues: Honorees generated a combined $3.05 billion in vertical market annual recurring revenue (ARR) in 2021, up 42% from $2.14 billion million in 2020. The surge involved extremely strong MSP merger and acquisition (M&A) activity; accelerated demand for cloud & cybersecurity services; and successful MSP pivots amid the continued COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Key Verticals: The most successful vertical market MSPs are zeroing in on healthcare and manufacturing, with continued strong interest in financial services, legal and government opportunities.
  • Managed Security Services: All of the honorees offer some form of managed security services – particularly backup and disaster recovery (96%), endpoint detection & response (EDR, 88%) and managed detection and response (MDR), 82%). Moreover, the MSPs increasingly focus on emerging areas such as Cloud Security Posture Management (CSPM, 49%) and eXtended Detection and Response (XDR, 38%).
  • End-Customer Reach: The Top 100 Vertical Market MSPs now manage more than 6.1 million users across their customer sites as of 2021, up from 3.1 million in 2020.
  • Top 10 Strategic Technology Partners: MSPs consider their top vertical market technology partners to be Microsoft (46%), ConnectWise (18%), Datto (18%), Cisco Systems (15%), Dell Technologies (14%), Ingram Micro (13%), Amazon Web Services (10%), SentinelOne (10%), Fortinet (9%) & Tech Data (7%).

"ChannelE2E and CyberRisk Alliance congratulate 3Cloud on this honor," said Amy Katz, executive VP and general manager of ChannelE2E, a CyberRisk Alliance resource. "Businesses worldwide increasingly outsource their most critical security, business automation and IT management requirements to the world's Top 100 Vertical Market MSPs."

3Cloud was also selected as one of the technology industry's top-performing providers of managed services by the editors of Channel Futures. For the past 16 years, managed service providers (MSPs) from around the globe have submitted applications to be included in this prestigious and definitive listing. The Channel Futures survey examines organizational performance based on annual sales, recurring revenue, profit margins, revenue mix, growth opportunities, innovation, technology solutions supported, and company and customer demographics.

MSPs that qualify for the list must pass a rigorous review conducted by the research team and editors of Channel Futures. It ranks applicants using a unique methodology that weighs financial performance according to long-term health and viability, commitment to recurring revenue and operational efficiency.

"We extend our heartfelt congratulations to the 2022 winners, and gratitude to the thousands of MSPs that have contributed to the continuing growth and success of the managed services sector," said Kelly Danziger, general manager of Informa Tech Channels. "These providers are most certainly driving a new wave of innovation in the industry and are demonstrating a commitment to moving the MSP and entire channel forward."

3Cloud's vision is to create the Ultimate Azure Experience for our customers, employees and stakeholders. 3Cloud recently hit a milestone by hiring its 600th full-time Azure expert. With a team of industry leaders, 3Cloud accelerates digital transformation across data and analytics, application innovation and cloud platform.

Since its beginning in 2016, 3Cloud has experienced unprecedented growth organically and through acquisitions and continues to outpace the Azure market growth of 46% year-over-year. Backed by Gryphon Investors since 2020, 3Cloud is the largest Azure exclusive Microsoft partner. 3Cloud was recently recognized as a top Microsoft Partner and received six 2022 Microsoft Partner of the Year Awards, including Migration to Azure and Solution Assessments.

About 3Cloud

As a top Microsoft services partner focused 100% on the Azure platform, 3Cloud helps clients build, migrate, modernize and manage their applications, infrastructure, data and analytics in the cloud. Founded by Mike Rocco and Jim Dietrich who served over 15 years together at Microsoft, 3Cloud combines a team of highly experienced cloud architects and technologists with a strong network of Microsoft sales and engineering relationships to deliver the ultimate Azure experience for clients. 3Cloud is headquartered in Chicago and serves clients throughout the U.S. To learn more, visit www.3cloudsolutions.com.

About ChannelE2E

ChannelE2E ( www.ChannelE2E.com ), a CyberRisk Alliance resource, is the leading digital destination for MSPs, IT service providers, channel partners and strategic investors seeking to maximize their business valuations, mitigate business risk and maximize security -- from Entrepreneur to Exit.

About Cyber Risk Alliance

CyberRisk Alliance (CRA) is a business intelligence company serving the high growth, rapidly evolving cybersecurity community with a diversified portfolio of services that inform, educate, build community, and inspire an efficient marketplace. Our trusted information leverages a unique network of journalists, analysts and influencers, policymakers, and practitioners. CRA's brands include SC Media, Security Weekly, InfoSec World, Cybersecurity Collaboration Forum, our research unit CRA Business Intelligence, the peer-to-peer CISO membership network, Cybersecurity Collaborative, and now Identiverse, ChannelE2E and MSSP Alert.

About Channel Futures

Channel Futures is a media and events platform serving companies in the information and communication technologies (ICT) channel industry with insights, industry analysis, peer engagement, business information and in-person events. We provide information, perspective, and connection for the entire channel ecosystem. This community includes technology and communications consultants, integrators, sellers, MSPs, agents, vendors and providers.

Our properties include the Channel Futures MSP 501, a list of the most influential and fastest-growing providers of managed services in the technology industry; Channel Partners events, which delivers unparalleled in-person events including Channel Partners Conference & Expo, the MSP 501 Summit and Channel Partners Europe; and Allies of the Channel Council (ACC) and DEI Community Group, our initiatives to educate, support and promote diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) in the ICT channel industry. Channel Futures is where the world meets the channel; we are leading Channel Partners forward. More information is available at channelfutures.com.

Channel Futures is part of Informa Tech, a market-leading B2B information provider with depth and specialization in ICT sector. Every year, we welcome 14,000+ subscribers to our research, more than 4 million unique monthly visitors to our digital communities, 18,200+ students to our training programs and 225,000 delegates to our events.

View original content to download multimedia: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/3cloud-recognized-by-channele2e-and-channel-futures-as-top-managed-services-provider-301601680.html

SOURCE 3Cloud

Mon, 08 Aug 2022 04:20:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.fbherald.com/business/3cloud-recognized-by-channele2e-and-channel-futures-as-top-managed-services-provider/article_5c9ad8a2-0c09-5cde-b650-79de19824ed0.html
Killexams : Whitmer: Budget makes record investments in students, public health, and infrastructure

Even after signing next year’s $76 billion state budget that makes record investments in education and public health, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says there is more work to be done to give Michiganders, and the state’s business community, what they need as the pandemic wears on and inflation strikes close to home.

Last month, Whitmer signed the budget into law, largely backing the plan the GOP-led Legislature approved.

Negotiators met behind the scenes for weeks to develop the budget proposal and announced a deal in late June. But they couldn’t agree on how to cut taxes, which is still possible thanks to a $7 billion budget surplus thanks to a flood of federal money and anticipated higher tax revenue.

State officials estimate that extra revenue is available to account for any tax deal that leaders can produce.

Whitmer, a Democrat, has called for targeted, more immediate tax cuts, while Republicans want broader ones including lower individual and corporate income tax rates. She’s hopeful that progress can be made when lawmakers return to the Capitol this fall.

The state’s fiscal year 2023 budget puts $6 billion toward state and local roads, bridges and other transportation projects. It also puts about $2.6 billion toward pension systems, including severely-underfunded municipal pension plans.

It also includes a $1.6 billion increase to the state’s “rainy day fund” as a precaution against an economic downturn as well as billions to Excellerate public health and public safety, which includes $325 million to construct a new state psychiatric hospital, $250 million for a new state public health and environmental laboratory, $278 million to expand access to behavioral health services, and $125 million to raise Medicaid reimbursement rates.

The state’s education system is expected to see a windfall with $20 billion for K-12 schools. The School Aid Budget includes $610 million to increase per-pupil funding from $8,700 to $9,150, the highest in state history, and $500 million to increase support for special education students and those with mental health needs.

Whitmer vetoed money that Republicans funneled toward anti-abortion causes including groups that run “pregnancy resource centers” focused on persuading pregnant women to give birth and totaled about $20 million in cuts. The veto demonstrated the stark political divide over abortion rights in Michigan following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision that effectively overturned  Roe v. Wade.

Abortion remains legal in the state after a judge issued an injunction in a lawsuit filed by Planned Parenthood, which is challenging Michigan’s long-unenforced 1931 law banning abortion unless it is “necessary to preserve” life.

Whitmer has taken action, including filing a lawsuit with the Michigan Supreme Court and securing a restraining order to block county prosecutors from enforcing the state’s 1931 abortion ban, in an effort to ensure Michigan women have continued access to reproductive care.

The Oakland Press sat down with the governor this week to discuss investments included in next year’s budget and other topics:

The Oakland Press: How big did the Oxford High School shooting, and the strong and passionate community activism and outcry that followed, play into budget negotiations that included significant investments for public health and safety for schools? How important is it for students to know that they are safe when they go to school?

Whitmer: As a mom whose kids have grown up in our public school system, and are now at one of our universities, what’s front and center of mind is always their safety. And as we’ve seen an increased number of shootings in school, I know parents feel that anxiety around their children. I know teachers and everyone who works in schools still feel this as well. As tough as some of the days have been over the last three and a half years, the day of and the days following the Oxford shooting were without question, the absolute worst that we’ve had to navigate as a state and that I’ve had to navigate as governor supporting the families of Oxford. There’s no more important thing we can do and yet no more tougher thing to do. That’s why the community’s voices … really played a big role in making sure that we stayed focused on the things that would help people and help our kids get back to some normalcy. The stress of the last few years is felt everywhere. Mental health is an issue I hear about everywhere I go across the state, but I think that the Oxford experience and the advocacy around it was really important in informing this budget. I just wish that we could get the legislature to a place where they would do some common sense safety reforms, so that we could take another step to keep our kids and our communities safer.

Oakland Press: How do you hope the  $7 billion in budget surplus is used? Where are you and the Legislature on a significant tax relief plan? Do you believe  there can be a compromise soon as many Michiganders struggle t with rising costs?

Whitmer: I’ll continue to try to work with the legislature and get their support. They’ve got different ideas, but whatever it is that we do … should be something that we can afford to do without compromising these important investments we’re making. It has to be something that will give people relief right now. The legislature sent me a bill a while back. It wouldn’t have given anyone relief until 2023. That’s too late. That’s not real. And that’s why I want to stay focused on what we can really deliver right now that’ll help people.

We were really worried in May of 2020 when our budget projections showed a $3 billion deficit that would’ve undermined everything that we needed to do to come out of the pandemic in a strong position. Just two years later, we ended up turning that into a $7 billion surplus. Some of it was because we got our credit rating upgraded … which I think is important, but also we’ve clearly got a lot of support from the federal government and a lot of it is one-time dollars. That’s why it’s been so important that we’re strategic in deploying one-time dollars in ways that are going to put us on a path, but don’t set us up for failure because they are just one-time. I think that this budget reflects a really important investment and strategic use of these federal resources. We’ve also left quite a bit of money on the balance sheet, so we could do more. It’s my hope that at some point the legislature will come back to town and want to negotiate how we deploy those additional resources because there are certainly ways that we could use it to help small businesses, to help communities, and to make sure that all our kids have all the wrap-around support that they need in their educational experience. We’re not done, but we’ve taken a huge step forward. We still have more that we could, and I believe will, get done.

Oakland Press: Why was increasing the per-pupil funding a priority for you? Have the state’s public school systems been underfunded? If so, how did the pandemic impact the state’s education system?

Whitmer: The fact is that for the fourth year in a row we delivered a bipartisan budget and this year are making the largest education investment in state history, especially with an additional focus around the mental health needs of our kids and the wrap-around supports with literacy coaches, increased mental health care, and reducing class size. These are all important components to helping get our kids back on track. It’s crucial we continue to do this work. I have proposed that we have individualized tutors. We could afford to do it. I’m hopeful that at some point the legislature will come back and work with me on that front because I think that’s an additional way we can support our kids and their families as we’re all trying to get back on track after this two year disruption of a global pandemic.

The state’s public education system has been underfunded for years and it’s coming at a cost to what happens in the classroom whether it’s legacy costs or it is just simply a lack of keeping up with the natural cost of inflation over decades. We have been short changing our kids and our educators and that’s why putting these resources in right now is overdue. It’s a first great, big step forward. We have more work to do here, but every parent deserves the peace of mind of knowing when they send their kids to school that they’re going to be safe and they’re going to be educated. Kids deserve that peace of mind as well. I think this budget reflects all of those priorities and it starts to address the long overdue need in terms of greater investment in public education in Michigan. The last thing I want to point out is we’ve done something that three or four governors before tried to do and that is to level out how we fund our schools per pupil. It’s no longer the case where wealthy districts get a lot more resources to educate their kids versus districts that really need more resources to educate their kids. We’re funding them at the same level. We’ve built equity on top of that with additional resources toward the at-risk population, kids with special needs, and English language learners. That’s how we built equity on top of equalizing the funding, which was long overdue as well.

Oakland Press: How will  billions in one-time federal infrastructure investments remediate road issues?

Whitmer: The roads have been long underfunded for decades. I’ve said that we’re going to fix these damn roads and I told people I’m serious about this. I came out of the blocks with the solution and kept that moving forward. We bonded these projects and because we’ve been doing this work, the engineering and the planning that goes on even before we start moving dirt, Michigan, as (U.S. Transportation) Secretary Pete Buttigieg said, is in a stronger position than just about any other state to be able to utilize these federal dollars that are coming in from the infrastructure bill. We will get 22,000 lane miles rebuilt in the coming years if we continue to put our foot on this accelerator. We’re already at 16,000 miles and 1,200 bridges. We’re making real progress, but you don’t undo decades of underfunding in three and a half years even with historic investment. It takes time and engineering, but we are moving dirt and we are moving fast. I know you see it with all the orange barrels and cones out there.

We’ve been resurfacing for a long time. A lot of these roads have to be rebuilt. … The work has begun. We’re moving forward and we’re moving as fast as possible. We’ve got a lot of hard working people out there, but we’re not just doing the superficial fixes. We are rebuilding and it takes time. It is hard work and expensive, but the longer we put off doing that work, the worse the situation gets and that’s why we have to get started. We certainly are moving a lot of dirt across the state.

Oakland Press: How will the new budget Excellerate the state’s pension systems and what is your message to retirees?

Whitmer: In America, it used to be that if you worked hard and you played by the rules you would be just fine and secure in your retirement. With legacy costs on municipalities, some of that’s in jeopardy with decisions by my predecessor and with the legislature, at the time, deciding to start taxing pension income to pay for a business tax break. They kind of pulled the rug out from underneath people. I opposed the tax when they first pushed it through the Republican-led legislature and the former governor signed it. I’ve opposed it every year and I’ve been trying to get rid of it since I’ve been governor. I’m hopeful at some point the legislature will work with me on this. I can’t do it alone, but this is something I think is a fundamental fairness issue. When you’ve worked your whole lifetime and you’ve played by the rules, it’s not like a 70- or 80-year-old can just go and pick up a part-time job to make ends meet. They have a fixed, limited income. And with inflation pinching people, it shows now more than ever we have to do right by our retirees and repeal the pension tax.

Oakland Press: In the wake of the latest U.S. Supreme Court decision on abortion, what have you, and will, you do to ensure Michigan women have quality reproductive care, including abortions?

Whitmer: I’ll take every step that is necessary to protect abortion access in Michigan. This isn’t right.We’ve had it 49 years and with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in overturning Roe v. Wade, it’s thrown Michigan into a scary place where we could … have one of the most extreme abortion laws in the country. This will have a huge impact on women and our families and have a huge impact on our economy. We cannot let this happen. That’s why I filed the lawsuit even before the decision and even before the draft decision was known because I was worried this is where the Supreme Court was heading. I took a little grief for it. Some people said it’s too early, that I jumped the gun, that it’s not ripe yet, and maybe it’s not necessary. Well, obviously it absolutely was. I’m still hopeful that the Michigan Supreme Court will take the case. I know we’re going to the ballot in November. I’m so grateful for all the work that’s been done and I’m glad we’ve got an injunction at the moment, but this is a high stakes, scary time. It’s a fundamental question: Are Michigan women going to be able to make decisions about their bodies and their lives without government or the court or others interfering with that?

We did get our temporary restraining order to cover all the county prosecutors that have abortion clinics in their boundaries. Obviously, there are hospital systems that are very concerned about the patients they care for and you know, some of the very volatile and ugly rhetoric. We have a Planned Parenthood clinic that was attacked this past weekend in Southwest Michigan. … I think it’s really important that we pass the ballot initiative in November and that the Michigan Supreme Court takes my case and issues a ruling so that women and providers across the state can have comfort knowing that they still have the same rights that we’ve had for the last 49 years.

Sun, 07 Aug 2022 09:02:00 -0500 Mark Cavitt en-US text/html https://www.theoaklandpress.com/2022/08/07/whitmer-budget-makes-record-investments-in-students-public-health-and-infrastructure/
Killexams : The evolving role of teachers and technologies amidst the COVID-19 pandemic - Student Friendly Adaptions of CAU, Imphal

By: Dr. Lokesh Kumar Mishra and Prof. Indira Sarangthem
As of 1st April 2020, more than 3.4 billion people, representing 43% of the world population, were in lockdown in more than 80 countries and territories around the world. The lockdown and social distancing measures immediately had an enormous impact on higher education when the COVID 19 pandemic engulfed the world in its initial phases.
Recent data released by the UNESCO indicate that the COVID-19 pandemic has affected almost 1.37 billion students across the world – this comprises 90% of all enrolled students in around 138 countries. This pandemic is surely the biggest crisis faced by humankind over the past century. In Indian higher education institutions (HEIs), the crisis has affected new admissions, examinations, student internships, placements and student mobility. An effective strategy is necessary to minimise the adverse impact of the pandemic. India with large student population belonging to diverse demographics, constrained student-faculty ratio, distinct rural-urban divide and gaps in access to digital resources makes the higher education field extremely complex. The pre-existing digital divide among the rural and urban regions was further aggravated in COVID 19 pandemic era. 394 Universities and around 60.53% of the Colleges are located in rural areas of India as per a report published by Association of Indian Universities (AIU). These learning centres lack sufficient digital infrastructure (hardware and software), connectivity, uninterrupted power supply and other resources needed for effective implementation of learning activities in online mode. The situation is further aggravated by the fact that physical campuses having minimal digital infrastructure was not accessible to faculties due to COVID 19 appropriate SOPs justifiably imposed by State and Union Government in the larger interest of minimizing the potential health hazards among the population and lack of personal digital connectivity particularly in non-metro and small cities. Furthermore, almost 50 % of the students coming from economically weaker sections, non-disadvantaged social groups also lack the conducive home environment for online learning or they may be living in areas with poor internet connectivity or irregular power supply that hinders online learning among these students.
Despite the overwhelming consequences of the pandemic, this global crisis has also been an extraordinary time for learning. All stakeholders that include the policy makers, teachers, students and families are learning how to adapt to the evolving situation and work towards making a resilient educational system.
The sudden shift away from the classroom globally due to COVID -19 pandemic and adoption of online learning may in all possibility continue to persist in the post-pandemic world, and such a shift would have huge impact on the worldwide education market. Even before the emergence of COVID-19, there was already high growth and adoption in education technology. The global investments in edtech reached US$18.66 billion in 2019 and the overall market for online education was projected to reach $350 Billion by 2025. There has been a significant surge in usage of digital learning tools and platforms such as language apps, virtual tutoring, video conferencing tools, or online learning software, since COVID-19 engulfed the world.The pandemic forced educators to rapidly devise pedagogical adaptations that have proven to be pivotal as the traditional in classroom lecturing models do not translate to a remote learning environment. Lecture deliveries by educators in remote mode through diverse channels like YouTube, Online-meeting platforms such as Zoom, Google Meet, Cisco Webex, and Microsoft Teams demand that the teachers evolve their teaching activities in such a way that they can engage students in a creative manner. This becomes even more important considering the pandemic driven frequent lockdowns, which forced every household to become a classroom despite the fact that majority of these households do not have favourable learning environment.
The situation is further complicated by the fact that the pandemic has recalibrated how teachers divide their time between teaching, engaging with students, and administrative tasks. In Brazil according to a survey conducted by Instituto Peninsula, 83% of teachers did not consider being prepared to teach remotely, 67% were anxious, 38% felt tired, and less than 10% were happy or satisfied. The pandemic has highlighted the need for flexibility and more time for student-teacher interactions. For example, in Estonia teachers were given autonomy to adjust the curriculum, lesson plans, and their time allocation. 
Almost 90% of countries that responded to the survey of Ministries of Education on National Responses to COVID-19 conducted by UNESCO, UNICEF, and the World Bank (2020) supported teachers by sharing guidelines stressing the importance of: providing feedback to students, maintaining constant communication with caregivers, and reporting to local education units to keep track of learning. The Association of Indian Universities (AIU) undertook several initiatives tosupport Member Universities to minimise the impact of COVID-19 – these include online facultydevelopment training for online teaching, national and international webinars, leadership talks andonline workshops on themes such as assessment and evaluation, and fostering social responsibilityamong others. An online survey of HEIs was also being conducted to gauge the preparedness ofIndian HEIs for online teaching.A significant initiative that the AIU worked upon with the O.P. Jindal Global University (JGU) to produce “COVID-19 Response Tool Kit for Indian Higher Education Institutions”, which was developed to help build Institutional Resilience for Academic Planning and Continuity.
Faculties adapted several novel methods of teaching globally. In Indian context, the course instructor has always played a central role in traditionalclassrooms by acting as an authority on the subject matter. The online format presents anopportunity to come out of this model and engage with students as active learners, while not beingphysically present within the same space. Instead of delivering a lecture, the course instructors needto focus on using flipped classrooms. In this approach, the faculty can assign the theoreticalcomponent as pre-reads for the class and utilize the classroom time for practical applicationsincluding discussions on real-life case studies, solving numerical problems, or any other practicalcomponent associated with the course.
The teachers have been using the following main methodologies to deliver the online classes suggested by COVID Response Tool Kit for Indian Higher Education Institutions published by AIU in August 2020:
1. Synchronous –Teaching live and having student-faculty interactions
2. Asynchronous–Sharing content in various formats including audio/video recordings, videos, documentaries, movies, reading material, presentations, e-books etc. with students consuming the content at their own pace and time of choice.
3. Hybrid –During live virtual classes, most sessions are happening at present with videos remaining off for students or even course instructors due to internet bandwidth constraints. Even audio remains patchy in most cases making interactions among course participants a difficult task. Thus, the body language related cues remain largely unavailable to the instructors. This makes synchronous discussions challenging. Thus, faculty have the option to explore hybrid means to conduct classes and can use the following means to create/ add an element of interaction to the asynchronous means:
* Social Media - The faculty can utilize Social Media platforms includingWhatsApp or Facebook to create course specific groups and use these for engaging students in asynchronous discussions related to the course.
* Discussion boards - The students can also actively share their learning, resources they find insightful, and ask questions that can be answered by their peers or teachers. Free platforms like Piazza (www.piazza.com) that have been created for academic discussions can also prove very useful for asynchronous discussions, asking and responding to questions (including options for doing so anonymously), and sharing resources. Such spaces can be made accessible to next batches also and can prove useful beyond the COVID-19 crisis.
Technology interventions have enhanced teacher engagement with students, through improved access to content, data and networks, helping teachers better support student learning all over the world. Despite several shortcomings related to connectivity, Digital-Divide, health concerns due to increased screen time and inadequate learning environments at home for learners,globally institutionsare adopting technology driven teaching and evaluation systems.
Central Agricultural University a premiere institution for Higher education in Agriculture and Allied Sciences in North Eastern India has been at the forefront of adopting technologies for remote learning, academic management and evaluation systems. The institution having it’s headquartering at Imphal, Manipur has 13 constituent colleges in the seven North Eastern states.
The College of Agriculture, Iroisemba, Imphal is the oldest constituent college of Central Agricultural University, Imphal. Established in 1979 as Manipur Agricultural College it acted as the foundation for establishment of Central Agriculture University, Imphal on 26th January, 1989. Since its inception CAU, Imphal has produced 3836 graduates, 1344 post graduates and 75 Ph.D. students. Currently, the College of Agriculture, CAU, Imphal has 379 undergraduate, 113 post graduate and 30 Ph.D. students enrolled for various degree programs.
The College of Agriculture, CAU, Imphal with dynamic and decisive leadership of Hon’ble Vice Chancellor took several measures to mitigate the issues that have been confronting the academic atmosphere in view of COVID-19 pandemic. The College faculties have worked tirelessly to evolve novel teaching methods for the benefit of the students. Many of the teachers have created their own YouTube Channels where specific lecture subjects are uploaded. The College of Agriculture, CAU, Imphal also created its own YouTube channel where faculties were provided facilities to upload their video lectures. When the first lockdown was enforced the College had to send the students home on 16th March 2020. The faculties swiftly adapted towards online teaching platforms like Google Meet and Zoom. Considering that many students live in remote corners of North Eastern States the faculties created whatsapp groups for each course through which lecture notes, reading materials and practice exams were disseminated. Evaluation methods using Google Forms for quiz was adopted widely for efficient feedback regarding the progress of learning among the students.
All the constituent colleges of Central Agricultural University including the College of Agriculture, Imphal adopted online admission procedure in the academic year 2020-21. A robust online academic management system (AMS) hosted by Indian Agricultural Statistical Research Institute, New Delhi has been adopted for paper free academic management. All the colleges are working towards adopting the system and it is targeted to completely move to the AMS platform. Central Agricultural University, Imphal also adopted and Online Examination platform developed hosted by a private service provider to conduct the end term examinations of the academic year 2020-21.
All these measures during COVID -19 pandemic ensured that academic activities of the Central Agricultural University, Imphal were conducted efficiently. The College of Agriculture, CAU, Imphalensured that academic activities were carried out with all sincerity. This allowed 60 undergraduate, 25 post graduate and 03 Ph.D students to complete their degree during the pandemic. This included 05 students of foreign origin.
All these collective efforts of faculties, supporting staff, university administration and most importantly students has yielded its benefits. In the latest ICAR rankings of Agricultural Universities 2020, Central Agricultural University jumped from 25th position to 13th position. In coming months CAU, Imphal is going to admit students in UG, PG and Ph.D. program in 13 different constituent colleges of the university located in seven different states of North East India. A huge rush for the seats of CAU in these programs is anticipated in this year also as has been a trend. Students can get admission in these courses in three modes a) by nomination through NE state governments b) through ICAR c) through CAU entrance examination for PG and Ph.D. program. Few seats at CAU, Imphal are also available under high payment category however it can be claimed only by students having good rankings in ICAR, CAU entrance examinations. Detailed information regarding admission at CAU, Imphal can be accessed from www.cau.ac.in.
The pandemic and the extended closures of educational institutes have changed the role of teachers and most of them were not prepared for such change; a comprehensive strategy is required for socio-emotional monitoring and psychosocial support to ensure teacher wellbeing. Similarly, students need the continuous support through these tough times to ensure that overall learning activities continue with high quality. Recently Central Agricultural University, Imphalcelebrated its 30th foundation day where it was stressed by Hon’ble Vice Chancellor Dr Anupam Mishra that all the constituent colleges of CAU, Imphalshall work in mission mode for excellence in academic, research and extension activities so that the farming community of north east willfinds us inseparable from their profession.
(Dr Lokesh Kumar Mishra is Associate Professor/Incharge of Academic Cell, College of Agriculture, Central Agricultural University, Imphal, Manipur. He is also working as Member Priority Setting, Monitoring and Evaluation (PME) Cell, Central Agricultural University, Imphal, Manipur.and Prof. Indira Saranthem is Dean College of Agriculture, CAU, Imphal. She is also the Chairperson of Faculty of Agriculture, CAU, Imphal and is working as member in several committees of CAU, Imphal and Manipur State Government)

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