ISU Headlines

Qwest donates $1.6 million of data-networking equipment to College of Technology

Posted October 29, 2008

Qwest recently donated approximately $1.6 million worth of data-networking equipment to Idaho State University’s Information Technology Systems program.

That gift was announced at a press conference on the ISU campus on Oct. 29.

ISU College of Technology students will use the equipment to learn how to build and repair modern telecommunications networks.

“Qwest’s generosity and foresight in making this gift assures that students in this program will enter the workforce prepared to support the latest technology,” said ISU President Arthur C. Vailas, Ph.D.

The equipment ranges from routers to various Cisco Servers. It has been arriving at ISU over the past several weeks from Qwest warehouses in 10 cities from Minnesota to Arizona. The equipment, most of which has never been used, would be valued at approximately $2 million if purchased new.

“We are very pleased that this advanced equipment has found a home and will be put to good use at ISU,” said Qwest Idaho President Jim Schmit.  “While Qwest no longer needs it to maintain our network, the equipment will help students get the kind of hands-on training that is so important for careers in advanced technology.”

ISU students will use the equipment to build small-scale equivalents of the telecommunications networks that serve Idaho residents today. Students will be able to create and troubleshoot network outages in the same way that a technician working for Qwest or another provider would do in an actual workplace.

Qwest has kept the donated equipment in storage as spares, but it is no longer needed after recent network upgrades the company has made in Idaho and elsewhere.

The ISU College of Technology is designed to meet the needs of students as well as business, industry and the community. The mission of the College is to provide youth and adults with technical skills, knowledge and attitudes necessary for successful performance in a highly effective workplace.

As Idaho’s largest postsecondary technical education institute, the College of Technology helps students acquire professional-technical education that is relevant to current and future workplaces.

The Information Technology Systems program provides students with entry-level skills in repairing and servicing computer equipment and computer peripherals, and in the setup and maintenance of computer networks. The program is a Cisco Networking Academy.

Graduates may choose to complete a technical certificate, Associate of Applied Science degree or a Bachelor of Applied Science degree.