February News Update
February 11, 2005
USTTI’s First Open Forum of 2005
The USTTI’s first web forum of 2005 was held February 1, as Curriculum Coordinators Kelly O’Keefe, Matthew Gebert, and Francesca Tripodi fielded dozens of questions about the USTTI. Topics of discussion included USTTI’s 2005 curriculum and training sponsors, the application process, and potential travel and subsistence funding sources. The inquiries, comments, and suggestions of all who participated were very helpful as the USTTI’s 23rd training year commences. Potential applicants should review the transcript, as it answers many frequently asked questions about the USTTI.
Web Site Upgrades
The USTTI is in the process of upgrading its web site, and we would like to receive your input! E-mail any new ideas or suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org, and the staff will take them into consideration.
USTTI to Support Conference on U.S. Technologies for Southeast Asia Communications
USTTI would like to make our Southeast Asian friends and alumni aware of an upcoming event in your region. We hope that you or your colleagues will be able to attend!
The United States Telecommunications Training Institute has joined as an official supporting organization for a U.S. conference on information and communications technologies for Southeast Asian nations. Presented by the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA), the April 27-29 event in Bangkok, Thailand, will bring government officials and private sector leaders from eight countries together with representatives of U.S. telecommunications and Internet technology companies.
The Southeast Asia Connections Conference will provide participants with details on new project and export opportunities in the areas of mobile systems, wireless local loop, data networking and Internet access, fiber networks, e-government and e-commerce. The projects presented at the event will range in value from $2 million to $200 million with an expected implementation timeframe in the next 18 months.
The conference agenda will also address key policy issues and highlight efforts to expand telecommunications infrastructure, improve delivery of government services, and support e-commerce. Speakers will include senior government officials and industry leaders from East Timor, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam and the United States.
Also expected to participate are representatives of the U.S. Department of State, U.S. Department of Commerce, and Southeast Asian companies interested in partnering with U.S. firms. Officials from international lending institutions, including the Export-Import Bank of the United States, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation and the International Finance Corporation, will also be on hand to discuss loan and insurance programs available for communications exports and investment in the region.
For more information or to register, visit the conference website at http://www.trademeetings.com or contact Kevin Craemer at 1-202-347-2725.
To date, USTTI has received 4,810 applications from 97 developing countries for our 2005 training courses. That is 600 more applications than had been received by this date in 2004 (a year which featured our strongest applicant pool in history!). We thank all of you who have already submitted applications, and we look forward to receiving applications from those who have yet to apply. Please remember: due to time-sensitive visa requirements, you should submit applications to the USTTI at least 16 weeks before your desired course’s orientation is held at USTTI headquarters in Washington, DC. Applications received within 16 weeks of the orientation date will still be considered, but it will be more difficult to secure a US entry visa within such a limited timeframe.
Black History Month
February 1 marked the beginning of Black History Month, celebrated in the United States since 1926. This commemoration was formalized by Dr. Carter G. Woodson, whose goal was to foster accurate historical representation of African Americans, who were not given credit for their contributions in shaping the history of the United States. Black History Month actually began as Negro History Week, which took place during the second week of February to coincide with the birthdays of slavery abolitionist Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln, the 16th American President.
On Monday, February 21 the USTTI offices will be closed in observance of Presidents’ Day. This date was first observed as a federal holiday in 1971 to honor all the men who have served the people of the United States as President. Each year, Presidents’ Day is observed on the third Monday in February. Prior to 1971, the holiday was observed on February 22 to commemorate the birthday of our first President, George Washington, who served as Commander-in-Chief from 1789 – 1797.
Brian McCloskey, who has been a Curriculum Coordinator at the USTTI for the past two and a half years, celebrated his last day in the office on Friday, February 11. Brian has been a great asset to the USTTI during his tenure, and we wish him the best of luck in his new position as Program Manager with the Software and Information Industry Association.