A gym packed with high school students screaming, cheerleaders kicking, a pep band playing, confetti riding the currents. A rally before the big game? No.
This scene is repeating throughout the tri-state footprint of Cablevision, but the adulation isn’t for athletes, it’s for scholars. They’re about to face off against other schools’ bright students in The Challenge, a team competition sponsored by our MSO of the Year winner Cablevision. All the action is carried on Cablevision’s News 12 (see clips at powertolearn.com). "You can’t believe the reaction we’re getting from schools on this," says Trent Anderson, the Cablevision VP and lifelong academic who heads the MSO’s Power to Learn effort.
The Challenge is the most visible part of Power to Learn, Cablevision’s extensive, 9-year-old effort whose thrust is to insure that teachers, parents and students are correctly integrating Cablevision-provided triple-play technology into education. Tech training and myriad programs are available to all 4,500 public and private schools and 500 libraries in the MSO’s footprint.
Anderson and his 20-person staff oversee this daunting task, plus they forge partnerships with programmers like ESPN and The History Channel, local education groups, CTAM, NCTA, CTPAA and Cable in the Classroom. Yet "our success hinges on the 10 people on the cover of your magazine," Anderson insists, referring to our current issue. But, he adds, don’t forget field installers, walk-in center staff and tech support reps trained specially to assist schools. "It’s really everyone at our company."
Education of a different sort was a key to our choice of Bright House Networks Tampa Bay as System of the Year. Bright House acts to insure that customers understand fully the capabilities of their new technology purchases.
As the holidays approach, it’s good to reflect on the importance of education for this industry, but also for world peace.