USM Extends Interactive Video Network to Maryland's Community Colleges
ADELPHI, Md. (September 24, 2007) - The University System of Maryland Academic
Telecommunications System (UMATS) is now offering interactive video networking
to Maryland's community colleges. The UMATS interactive video network (IVN)
enhances distance-learning capabilities through expanded and affordable live,
two-way interactive video. Twelve community colleges across the state of Maryland
have signed up for the service.
"Previously, many community colleges were hampered by being
part of a closed system that limited the number of sites to which they could
connect for video conferencing," said Norwin Malmberg, acting director of
UMATS. "Our system does not limit the number of sites and expands what
community colleges can accomplish with this powerful educational tool."
The UMATS IVN permits community colleges to network with
each other, with the institutions of the University System of Maryland (USM),
and-using Internet2-through any similar IVN service throughout world. Its
split-screen capability accommodates a view of the instructor on one screen and
any educational materials, presentations, or visuals for the class on the
"There has long been
a vision to develop a Maryland Education Internet, which would facilitate
advanced technology services among Maryland
education institutions," said Donald Z. Spicer, associate vice chancellor and
chief information officer for USM. "This agreement is a big step toward
realizing that vision, with the hope that we can expand collaboration with Maryland's
community colleges on further initiatives."
UMATS worked with the Maryland Community College Technical
Advisory Board (MCCTAB) to implement this new service. Currently, 12 of Maryland's
16 community colleges have signed on to the IVN service, including: Anne
Arundel Community College, Baltimore City Community College, Carroll Community
College, Cecil Community College, Chesapeake College, College of Southern
Maryland, Frederick Community College, Garrett College, Hagerstown Community
College, Howard Community College, Prince Georges Community College, and
College has also joined the
"Our system is not limited to community colleges alone,"
Malmberg said. "Other higher education institutions in Maryland
are welcome to participate."
For more information on UMATS IVN, contact Norwin Malmberg
Contact: John Buettner