Colgate Donates Wireless Devices to Hamilton Central School District

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When the Hamilton Central School District (HCSD) decided to close its doors on March 15 in response to the threat of COVID-19, school officials knew they would need to figure out a way to provide internet services for those without access within the district.
HCSD Superintendent William Dowsland said he reached out to Colgate Vice President for Finance and Administration Joseph Hope for assistance. Hope coordinated with Colgate Chief Information Officer Niranjan Davray, and, together, they were able to pull together a handful of portable wireless hotspot units for the school district to help ensure access for students and teachers who needed the help. In addition, data fees for each of the mifi units are also being provided courtesy of Colgate. 
Wireless hotspots are small portable devices that turn cell signals into data for computers and phones and can be used anywhere with cell service, even if the home does not have broadband or other internet connections. 
“While maintaining our ability to provide access to Colgate staff and faculty, we were able to arrange the hotspots for HCSD. Supporting the community during this public crisis is aligned with Colgate’s mission and values.” Davray said. “In addition, Colgate is also providing the data service for these hotspots.” 
Starting April 13, Dowsland said, HCSD, a K-12 school that teaches many children of Colgate employees, is conducting instruction online. Dowsland said the district had been conducting instruction with paper handouts to maintain equity between students prior to ensuring access for those without internet connections.
“We are just so appreciative,” Dowsland said. “Moving to this online learning platform, we had a number of families without connectivity. Now, with the donation from Colgate, we’re nearing 100-percent connectivity for our students. It’s terrific, and it takes the anxiety off of not only those families but also our teachers trying to connect with those students.”