GPRC and TELUS Partner to Enable Online Education
Thursday, October 8th, 2020
GPRC and TELUS Partner to Enable Online Education.
GRANDE PRAIRIE – Grande Prairie Regional College (GPRC) has signed an agreement with TELUS to provide eligible students increased access to connectivity, which is crucial to enable remote learning and furthering opportunities to keep students connected to one another.
GPRC’s fall semester is being offered through a mixed delivery model with most programs and courses being provided remotely as the College does its part to reduce the spread of illness and protect its community against the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Our top priority is the health and safety of our students, staff and community. GPRC is proud of this innovative partnership as the College transitioned to a predominately remote learning model this semester. Providing our students with accessible and reliable connectivity for course instruction is a primary focus,” said Dr. Robert Murray, GPRC President and CEO. “We thank TELUS and their commitment to providing our students with the technology resources they need to be successful.”
TELUS has provided the College with 200 Smart Hubs, which are mobile wireless hotspots capable of hosting several connections simultaneously. The Smart Hubs are available free of charge for GPRC students living in Indigenous rural areas or those with limited to no access to the internet. These Smart Hubs will offer students up to 1TB of data per month and speeds up to 25 Mbps.
“GPRC prides itself on providing an inclusive and unparalleled student experience and this partnership will assist our College to ensure each student can access their course material with confidence,” said Dr. Murray.
The partnership also includes access to a student mobility plan of 20GB of data for $75 dollars a month, including no data overage fees. The reliable connectivity that this plan provides means students can access not only coursework, their professors, and peers, but also vital health and wellness resources. GPRC students can also access mental health resources through GPRC.me/MentalHealth.
“Access to reliable connectivity is crucial in nearly every aspect of our lives and this has never been clearer than amid the current global health crisis. Whether it is the ability to stay on an educational track by distance learning or simply staying in touch with friends and family, access to world-class networks has never been more important, which is why we’re proud to support Grande Prairie Regional College’s efforts to keep its students connected,” said Brian Bettis, General Manager – Alberta North, TELUS. “TELUS has a long history of supporting the residents of Grande Prairie, from volunteering our time at local charities to supporting Grande Prairie Public Library by providing Smart Hubs for loan to residents, TELUS remains committed to ensuring Grande Prairie has the resources it needs to thrive.”
The signing of the TELUS agreement complements the College’s current partnership with Athabasca University (AU) to join their innovative learning platform and transition courses online for remote delivery. This collaboration with AU also provides GPRC the opportunity to develop new courses for student needs and demands. GPRC students are benefiting from AU’s world-leading expertise in online education and will now benefit from increased connectivity through the TELUS partnership.
GPRC students can visit any TELUS location and show their current student ID to get their mobility plan set-up.