GLEN JEAN, WV (WOAY) – In early August, Governor Justice announced his Kids Connect initiative to enhance wireless internet connection across the state. With schools across the state back in-session in different capacities, WiFi access points are being installed to ensure internet is available for those who need it.
The West Virginia Army National Guard Recruiting Office in Glen Jean is now a WiFi access point supporting Governor Justice’s Kids Connect. National Guard members at the base assisted in the project.
“We’re trying to assist the Governor’s initiative,” said West Virginia National Guard Telecommunications Specialist Staff Sergeant Douglas Cooper. “(We’re) expanding internet access to the student that might not have it at home, don’t have it readily accessible or it’s not stable for them.”
The goal is to have connectivity at 20 different facilities. The National Guard offices are effective in terms of location as well as coverage ability.
“You’ve got to get the coverage in the right areas,” Cooper said. “Antenna placement, stuff like that is kind of critical. In these facilities, we’re trying to find a pathway from where the internet exists to get it to where the antenna will be. It usually requires some significant planning.”
Multiple departments are teaming up on this effort, and the end goal remains to provide the public with the most extensive internet coverage possible.
“The guards are here to help the state,” Cooper said. “That’s what we’re here for, to help the public. Our facilities are, like I say, located in the areas along with the public. We do everything we can to try to help with whatever the community needs are across the state.”
Those in surrounding areas can look forward to stable WiFi access as the Kids Connect project continues to progress.