C.K. Blandin Foundation
The C.K. Blandin Foundation plans to launch the Minnesota Intelligent Rural Communities initiative, a multi-sector, comprehensive approach to sustainable broadband adoption targeting residents, small businesses, local governments, and critical services providers in rural Minnesota. The initiative expects to reach each of Minnesota’s 80 rural counties through education, training, technical assistance, and by removing barriers to broadband adoption. The project anticipates training as many as 2,500 individuals in computer literacy, online education, and workforce development, and plans to distribute 1,000 affordable refurbished computers to low-income, rural Minnesota residents. Funding will support the development of institutional broadband applications for schools and health care facilities to help increase broadband adoption. The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) Center at the University of Minnesota, Crookston will help track the impact of the project, including the number of subscribers generated.