Cruzio has been working with the Pajaro Valley Unified School District for months to get reliable, fast internet to all the students who need it. We’ve been installing high speed broadband at their homes since springtime and have connected about 50 families so far.
And we love these students. They’ve been in online classes for weeks now and they’ve been telling us how much it means to have a good connection.
Here’s who they are and what they have to say! We’re hoping they stay in touch so we can see where they are years from now. We suspect we’re looking a the future leaders of our county — maybe a mayor or a county supervisor in the bunch.
First, a couple of middle schoolers made videos and they’re fantastic. Karyna even translated her statement into Spanish after she speaking with impressive poise in English. As Cruzio’s Sales and Marketing Manager, Jesus Lopez, put it: “I’m not crying, you’re crying.”
Equal Access Santa Cruz has a simple goal: to bridge the digital divide and bring true high-speed broadband to every family in the Santa Cruz community, regardless of income level. The project is spearheaded by Cruzio Internet, one of the country’s oldest independent ISPs and a trusted partner in the Santa Cruz community for over 30 years.
When the current health crisis hit our county, our education system was an immediate area of major concern. it was obvious that the need for high-quality broadband had never been higher, and that low-income families would be the hardest hit.
For folks who’ve been displaced and need to connect to the internet, Cruzio has set up several public wifi spots outdoors which you can access in your car or while social distancing. This internet is very fast and it’s free of charge. There’s no password.
Cruzio thought we might have less activity during shelter-in-place, but we were wrong.
School kids need more internet
Children who used to access the internet from their school or library don’t have access there any more. So Cruzio has added a considerable number of donated accounts to our work. We’re collaborating with the Santa Cruz County Office of Education (COE) to get internet connections to low-income families who need to get their kids online.
If children can’t access the internet, they may fall behind in school, and we can’t let that happen.
On December 5th Cruzio was awarded a $2.45 Million broadband grant from the California Advanced Services Fund to build high-speed fiber optic internet connectivity to seven under-served mobile home parks in the Capitola area.
If anyone in the world is qualified to run an ISP, it’s Kenneth Adelman. How many people, when asked by tech support staff if they know how to run a traceroute, can answer, “Look at the traceroute source code – it has my name in it”? Adelman co-founded two internet software companies in the 1990s, sold them and retired in his 30s to devote himself to artistic, athletic and environmental pursuits. Now, in addition, he runs a small ISP in his spare time.
Everyone in our community should have equal access to high-speed, affordable internet. This has been Cruzio’s goal throughout our history, and it’s why we’ve been constructing our own fiber network, Santa Cruz Fiber.Following our success building in downtown Santa Cruz, there is potential for a new project in mid-County. We’re calling it Equal Access Santa Cruz. Financing for the project would come from a state grant, for which Cruzio recently applied.This project fits the grant’s purpose to a T; improving internet access in areas which aren’t well served. We have support from Congressman Jimmy Panetta; State Assembly Member Mark Stone; County Supervisors Zach Friend and John Leopold (in whose districts the project lies); the County Office of Education; and many others.Here’s a description of the project: