Linking local businesses, institutions and citizens to the national and global information infrastructures is the goal of Greater Kalamazoo Telecity USA, a group of local communications networks. Telecity USA is an umbrella organization combining the expertise and abilities of CommunityNET, LearnNET, CollegeNET, HealthNET, BizNET, and JobNET. The project links these specialized services in a network of networks, allowing them to share information and access.
CommunityNET will provide access to workers needing retraining, unemployed workers seeking work opportunities, citizens needing information about local social and health care services, students and faculty seeking research information, and business executives seeking market and financial data.
LearnNET and CollegeNET will enable the best teachers, courses, and scholars to be available to students without regard to geography, distance, resource, or disability. It will concentrate on resolving disparities between inner-city schools, small rural schools, revenue poor schools and, suburban schools.
HealthNET will seek to improve the quality and availability of health care services by allowing health care providers to share information. BizNET will seek to provide local businesses with access to information on marketing, customer service, and global issues relating to business. JobNET will seek ways to match job skills and training with local, regional, and national job openings.
By connecting the networks, developing network integration and application software, training users, and experimenting with various uses of the system, Telecity USA could benefit as many as 200,000 end users, in 85,000 Kalamazoo households. Partners in the project include Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo Valley Intermediate School District, the Upjohn Corporation, and the First of America Banking Corporation.