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The Snelling Center for Government and
Champlain College present:
“Fulfilling Vermont’s e-State Potential
Building Community in a ‘Connected Age'”
May 29, 2008
Champlain College, Burlington, VT

The Snelling Center for Government and Champlain College invite you to participate in a lively, interactive public symposium on the intersection of community, civic life, and technology in Vermont.  Widespread broadband and cell phone service will change our lives in ways no less significant than the advent of telephones and rural electrification. Join us in this opportunity to influence the future of Vermont!Lewis Feldstein, co-author (with Robert Putnam) of “Better Together” will speak, we will hear from a panel of innovative Vermonters who are using technology to connect communities, and we’ll strategize about ways to navigate the many changes that are coming soon to a town near you.
The symposium will have live blog coverage for those who can’t be there in person.       Click here to learn more!

BACKGROUNDThe state of Vermont has set a goal of border to border access to cellular and broadband coverage. This technological and financial feat will allow all citizens to be connected no matter where they reside, work or travel within the state. This goal will be achieved through a combination of public and private initiatives and with the guidance of the state’s Telecommunications Authority. A key premise of this initiative is that the goal of 100% availability of broadband and cellular service in Vermont will be accomplished by 2010 and that citizens need to be prepared to take good and appropriate advantage of this transformative capacity.Much attention has been given to the benefits of full connectivity as they relate to economic development and health care. However, the opportunities and challenges associated with new modes of participation “in society and civic life” and new opportunities for schools and municipalities still need much discussion, focus, and engagement.
· How might civic life change in a fully connected state?
· How will we master emerging technologies so they unite us and strengthen communities?
· How will we address issues of privacy, equity, resistance to change, ownership, and cost?
· How will local and state governmental units ensure that all citizens have equal access to information and participation?

Will Bates Step-It-Up
John Bloch Montpelier; ORCA
Arlyn Bruccoli Technology Integration Specialist, DOE
Rob Chapman Vermont Community Access Media
Maureen Connolly North Link
Paul Costello VT Council on Rural Development
Lauren-Glenn Davitian CCTV & Center for Media and Democracy
Al Duey VT Broadband Project
Laura Duey VT Broadband Project
Karen Horn VT League of Cities and Towns
Bob McNamara Superintendent, Washington West SU
Cathy Resmer Seven Days
Will Sawyer Center for Rural Studies; Community Development & Applied Economics, UVM
Al Voegele Manager, Town of Colchester
Michael Wood-Lewis Front Porch Forum