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Campuses across the state tune into ribbon cutting

staff writer

Published: Thursday, October 4, 2012

Updated: Thursday, October 4, 2012 11:10

distance education

GOVERNER GARY HERBERT speaks to Angie Thomas, a student from the USU Delta campus, at the ribbon cutting of the new distance education building Wednesday afternoon. JESSICA FIFE photo

Governor Gary Herbert visited the USU campus Wednesday afternoon for the dedication of the new Distance Education Building. After a question and answer session with students, Herbert, USU President Stan Albrecht and other officials cut the virtual ribbon on the new building at 4 p.m.


The ceremony was broadcasted to various distance campuses across the state.


“Utah State is just one of the real jewels of our higher education system,” Herbert said.


Though the 40,000 square foot building only has 12 classrooms, broadcasts will be sent to 250 additional locations throughout the state. The building will deliver courses to more than 12,000 distance education students.


“This building increases the capacity on the Logan campus to be able to broadcast more,” said Robert Wagner, associate vice provost. He said 350 courses are being broadcasted each week this semester.


Wagner said experiments are also being made with greater interactive technology, allowing students in distance education classrooms to be more connected to the main campus. The building is designated as a Cisco beta site, meaning distance students will be able to interact with the teachers through a system called Internet Video Conferencing (IVC.)


Wagner said the new technology doesn’t affect student fees, and the tuition for students to attend a broadcast course form the new building is the same as if they were to take a traditional class.


“The reason we do this is so that students can experience the classroom and interact with their instructors,” said Ronda Menlove, senior vice-provost.


“I would dare say there is no other building in the United States that’s as technology-rich as this building,” she said.


Menlove said it is a truly an innovative building.

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