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Feasibility Study for a Statewide Higher Education Information Technology Network
State of Connecticut, September 18, 1996

Implementation Strategy

As previously mentioned, an education network would be most efficient if planned and operated in conjunction with the K-12 and library networks. The public and private higher education institutions have the proper resources and infrastructure to implement this network today. K-12 and the libraries will most likely require more investments in infrastructure before they are ready to connect. Consequently, it is recommended that Connecticut take the following approach:

  • Assess the use of a statewide network. Determine what services should be offered, who would participate in the network, etc. An open line of communication must be established with K-12, libraries, museums, and state agencies so that the higher education network can address the needs of all prospective constituents.
  • Perform a detailed network design. This should be performed in conjunction with K-12, the libraries, state agencies, etc. The design would enumerate the following:
    • Adequate bandwidth and level of service required at each individual site
    • Location and configuration of new hardware
    • Prices associated with carrier services
    • Detailed cost estimates
  • Design and implement an inter-institution test-bed for ATM. This would include select higher education sites, as well as any K-12/Library sites that can support connectivity
  • Develop an implementation plan. This would illustrate the timeline and resources associated with the following:
    • Establishment of a network backbone between public higher education institutions
    • Addition of other network constituents (e.g., independent colleges and universities, K-12, libraries, museums, government agencies, etc.)
    • **Today, ATM may not be available in all portions of the State of Connecticut. Full-scale ATM availability is expected by the year 2000. This may affect implementation schedules.
  • Begin phased roll-out

A statewide network that will encompass higher education, K-12, and other education-related entities takes time to plan, implement, and test. Consequently, the State of Connecticut should begin taking the necessary steps towards implementation today. As more time elapses, each of these entities will continue to grow independent of one another. Furthermore, other states will surpass Connecticut in their ability to deliver education. The sooner that Connecticut implements a solution, the more beneficial it will be.

**The Department of Higher Education should request funding from the State as soon as they feel that their cost estimates are adequate enough to receive legislative approval

Executive Summary
Table of Contents
12 Current Situation
13 Problem Statement and Impact Analysis
16 Benefits of a Statewide Network
17 Applications of a Statewide Network-Other States
18 Applications of a Statewide Network-Connecticut
20 Possible Technology Scenarios
21 Recommended Technology Scenario
22 Costing Model - Assumptions
23 Scope of Cost Model
25 Cost of Recommended Technology Scenario
26 Other Recommendations
30 Implementation Strategy

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