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Interapt will allow 50 students to go through 20 weeks of paid training as computer coders and those who complete the program will earn positions with Interapt

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Dr. Devin Stephenson, president of Big Sandy Community and Technical College (BSCTC), met with Hal Heiner, secretary of the education and workforce development cabinet at his Frankfort office on Monday, June 28. 

Dr. Devin Stephenson, president of Big Sandy Community and Technical College, met with Hal Heiner, secretary of the education and workforce development cabinet, on Monday, June 27 at his Frankfort office.  Dr. Devin Stephenson, president of Big Sandy Community and Technical College, met with Hal Heiner, secretary of the education and workforce development cabinet, on Monday, June 27 at his Frankfort office. “I appreciate Secretary Heiner taking time out of his schedule to meet with me,” said Dr. Stephenson. “Secretary Heiner is committed to bringing opportunities to Kentucky and he is strongly committed to the transformation of Eastern Kentucky’s economy.  We look forward to working with the cabinet on many initiatives going forward.” 

Dr. Stephenson shared BSCTC’s story of transformation over the past year, including a sweeping administrative reorganization and strategic planning effort.

“It is important for the Secretary to know that our programs are relevant to business and industry and that we are committed to assisting students find gainful employment beyond graduation,” Dr. Stephenson added. “What inspires our work each day is the ability we have to transform our region one student, one opportunity at a time.”

Earlier this year, BSCTC was approved to start a Broadband Technology associate degree program, the first in Kentucky and just the third program of its kind in the United States.  BSCTC was also the first college in Kentucky to launch a Fiber Optics Association (FOA) sanctioned Fiber Optics training program.  Later this year, BSCTC will break ground on a $4.5 million Advanced Technology Center, the first fiber-to-the-desk facility in the state, to house the aforementioned programs. 

“The Advanced Technology Center will give us the capacity to explore programming in areas such as unmanned aircraft and cyber security,” said Dr. Stephenson. “As the economy changes, so does our planning and our programming.  It’s important that we remain on the bleeding edge in regard to program offerings and equipment and that is one reason we are seriously developing plans for future work around the areas of advanced manufacturing, telemedicine, and digital technology.”

Dr. Stephenson also shared the recent developments of the TechHire East Kentucky program.  This collaboration between BSCTC, the Eastern Kentucky Concentrated Employment Program, Inc. (EKCEP), Shaping Our Appalachian Region (SOAR) and Interapt will allow 50 students to go through 20 weeks of paid training as computer coders and those who successfully complete the program will earn positions with Interapt.


“I wanted Secretary Heiner to know that there are a lot of dedicated people working on the frontlines of transformation each day in Eastern Kentucky,” said Dr. Stephenson. “I also expressed my sincere appreciation for the leadership and innovation displayed by EKCEP and their partners. We have a very responsive workforce investment board that is always willing to partner with our college on programs.”

 

 

West Sixth Brewing is releasing the new Half-Bite IPA, the first Kentucky beer to be canned and available in 12 packs and it will have half the alcohol content of its regular IPA beer.

“We’re excited to announce that Half-Bite IPA, our newest offering – will be available just in time for the Fourth of July celebrations,” said West Sixth co-founder Ben Self.

“Designed to be the rowdy younger brother of the West Sixth IPA, the Half-Bite IPA uses the same varieties and quantity of hops as our regular IPA, but contains only half the alcohol – so it’s perfect for summer days and outdoor adventures when you want to have a few,” said co-founder Brady Barlow.

West Sixth Brewing Half BiteWest Sixth Brewing Half Bite

“Reflecting on the nature of the beer, it only seemed appropriate the Half-Bite IPA will be canned and sold in 12-pack boxes,” said co-founder Joe Kuosman. “We’re very excited to be the first brewery to do this in Kentucky.”

Half-Bite IPA is aggressively hopped with Centennial, Citra, and Columbus hops. It’s got a great bite, earthy bitterness, and citrus notes, but clocks in at only 3.5 percent ABV, said co-founder and brewer Robin Sither.

As with all of the West Sixth Brewing cans, these cans and boxes were designed by local designers Brian and Sara Turner of Cricket Press.

“They really knocked it out of the park with Half-Bite, especially having both a can and box design” said West Sixth Creative Director Kelly Hieronymus. “I can’t wait to see this 12-pack in the wild.”

Half-Bite IPA will be available through West Sixth’s distribution partners in Kentucky (Clark Distributing, River City Distributing, and Stagnaro Distributing) beginning next week.

For more information, go to http://www.westsixth.com/halfbite.

From West Sixth Brewing Communications

Popular Lazer feature restored...

 

LAZERLAND, KY. -- Our programmer has fixed the comments posted on Thelevisalazer.com after nine days. We were attacked by a Trojan virus, actually 172 of them, and it has been a difficult and expensive struggle to get everything back working correctly. We still have to replace several photos in the archives sections on each category but all of the comments have been restored and you can post them as usual now.

All of our features have now been restored from the ground up and Security has been put in place as well as daily backups.

We appreciate the patience of our viewers throughout this struggle and we have taken every precaution to make sure we do not get attacked again. 

MARCH 22, 2016

Ohio River Network building a newsroom that crosses state lines to cover Appalachian region

The Ohio River Network, a regional journalism collaboration, has hired veteran journalist Jeff Young as its managing editor.   Young will lead hiring efforts to establish the new, three-state newsroom, which includes seven public media stations in Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia. The Ohio River Network, a regional journalism collaboration, has hired veteran journalist Jeff Young as its managing editor. Young will lead hiring efforts to establish the new, three-state newsroom, which includes seven public media stations in Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia. The Ohio River Network—a three state newsroom in Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia—was created to turn competitors into collaborators by crossing state lines to have journalists in other locations work together to report the news, Anna Clark reports for Columbia Journalism Review.

"The collaborative stretches across both cities and rural areas, reaching listeners that tune in from Athens, Ohio, to Whitesburg, Ky., home of WMMT/Appalshop, the legendary documentary outfit that is perhaps the most distinctive station in the network."

Ohio River Network, which consists of seven public media partners led by Louisville Public Media, wants to produce “hard-hitting, high-quality multimedia journalism that examines the region’s economy, energy, environment, agriculture, infrastructure and health," Clark writes. It was founded with a $445,000 grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The $4.4 million venture, which includes partnerships with networks such as NewsHour and Morning Edition, "will eventually create 57 newsroom positions, including 11 editors, in places ranging from Little Rock, Ark., to Buffalo, N.Y."

Donovan Reynolds, Louisville Public Media president and general manager, said the "most pressing news doesn’t stop at state lines," Clark writes. "Louisville Public Media created the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting in 2013, a nonprofit newsroom that it is incubating alongside the three public radio stations that operate under LPM’s umbrella. It also expanded its capital coverage, in part by developing a newscast that it distributes around the state, laying the groundwork for the more far-reaching collaboration of the Ohio River Network."

Jeff Young, a veteran of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, one of the Ohio River Network partners, told Clark, “This is a place that’s been kind of beaten down over the years, and I think there’s a kind of fatalism. A lot of people in this region believe that in order to have economic growth, we have to accept environmental degradation and bad impacts on our health. We want to have good journalism around these issues that present some options for going in a direction that’s better and healthier.” (Read more)

Written by Tim Mandell 

 

U.S. Congressman Harold “Hal” Rogers (KY-05), at right, and Lonnie Lawson, second from left, president and CEO of The Center for Rural Development, met with Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler to discuss broadband expansion in Eastern Kentucky. Wheeler met with area leaders at a roundtable discussion at Hazard Community and Technical College as part of SOAR’s (Shaping Our Appalachian Region) “Broadband and Business Series.”U.S. Congressman Harold “Hal” Rogers (KY-05), at right, and Lonnie Lawson, second from left, president and CEO of The Center for Rural Development, met with Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler to discuss broadband expansion in Eastern Kentucky. Wheeler met with area leaders at a roundtable discussion at Hazard Community and Technical College as part of SOAR’s (Shaping Our Appalachian Region) “Broadband and Business Series.”

The Center for Rural Development—a regional leader in technology—is leading the efforts to bring reliable, high-speed Internet to Eastern Kentucky.

U.S. Congressman Harold “Hal” Rogers (KY-05), Lonnie Lawson, president and CEO of The Center, and other area leaders met with Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler on a recent trip to McKee and Hazard in Eastern Kentucky to discuss SOAR’s (Shaping Our Appalachian Region) efforts at reducing the rural digital divide.

The “digital divide” is a term that refers to the gap between demographics and regions that have access to modern information and communications technology, and those that don’t or have restricted access.

Rogers invited Wheeler to meet with local leaders about innovative projects that are already underway to utilize the anticipated connection to high-speed, high-capacity fiber optic cable in the region.

“Chairman Wheeler shared a wealth of insight and expertise on a broad range of telecom issues,” Rogers said. “His visit comes during a critical time in Eastern Kentucky, as our local communities pave the way for broadband access that can transform the way we do business, administer healthcare, and educate our young people.”

“Broadband is the greatest asset of the 21st Century,” Wheeler added. “We are teaching kids how to harness all of the benefits of broadband-enabled technologies; how to have the skills to use this network to not only obtain a job some day, but to grow jobs here.”

More than a dozen panelists discussed the benefits of broadband and how to address the rural digital divide at a roundtable discussion at Hazard Community and Technical College as part of SOAR’s “Broadband and Business Series.”

According to Lawson, The Center began looking at this growing digital disparity in the SOAR region several years ago. “We became very concerned with the increasing frequency of complaints being expressed by businesses, communities, and individuals seeking to actively engage with the digital world,” he said. “If the SOAR region is to participate in national discussions and in the global economy, we simply could not allow these barriers to stand.”

Under Lawson’s direction, The Center has taken a prominent role in addressing the issue of access to affordable high-speed Internet connections in Eastern Kentucky. Along with its own initiatives, The Center has been an active partner with the Commonwealth of Kentucky on the KentuckyWired project.

“What began as a fiber-optic infrastructure project for Eastern Kentucky alone, the Kentucky Super I-Way was quickly recognized and adopted as a model for building a statewide KentuckyWired network,” said Lawson, committee chair of the SOAR Broadband Working Group. “Although these two projects are distinct in purpose, the coordinated and combined efforts of The Center and the Commonwealth, to provide a consolidated solution for all of Kentucky, is a winning approach.”

Kentucky currently ranks 46th in broadband availability and 47th in broadband speed. Approximately 23 percent of rural areas in Kentucky do not have access to broadband.

In the coming months, The Center will be providing free strategic planning sessions to help communities learn how to connect to the new network and will be working to coordinate local efforts with regional planning as the Super I-Way portion of KentuckyWired is deployed.

For more information on broadband expansion, contact Larry Combs, director of business services and technology at The Center, at 606-677-6000.

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