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August 14, 2001

Coastal Carolina University's H. Dale Williams Center for Extended Learning will be the site of a new South Carolina Army National Guard distance learning multi-media classroom. The National Guard Bureau has been designated by Congress as the Executive Agent for the Distributive Training Technology Project, a national initiative designed to provide cost-effective military training to guardsmen while providing communities with convenient access to the latest educational resources.

The facility at Coastal will serve approximately 800 guardsmen in Horry, Georgetown, Florence, Dillion, Marion and Williamsburg counties.

Scheduled to open in mid-September, the classroom will be a shared-use facility which will enable Grand Strand residents to take advantage of the classroom and its technologies when not being used by the National Guard. Opportunities will also be available for guardsmen and their families to participate in continuing education offerings through Coastal's Division of Extended Learning and Public Services. Coastal will have the opportunity to develop various programs based on the classroom's capabilities and market these programs to the community.

The classroom will consist of eight to 12 computers with high speed connection to the Internet, e-mail, CD-ROM, fax, video programming, and audio and video conferencing. There will also be two 32-inch monitors capable of broadcasting and receiving interactive television instruction, audiographics, and remote computer-based training and satellite reception.

The National Guard has similar classrooms in more than 200 sites throughout the nation. The South Carolina National Guard, commanded by S.C. Adjutant General Stanhope S. Spears, has seven other locations including sites at Clemson University, the University of South Carolina and Florence-Darlington Technical College. Proposed sites include USC- Lancaster, USC-Spartanburg, USC-Beaufort and South Carolina State University.

For more information, contact Peter Balsamo, dean of Coastal's Division of Extended Learning and Public Services at 349-2648.