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Summer 2014 NACTEL Newsletter

Keep Your Classes Rolling Along This Summer

So, you think that it is too late or too hard to get the
degree to help put you in charge of your career? 

NACTEL's Telecommunications education is designed for working adults like you.

• High quality education provided by Pace University, and recently recognized by U.S. News and World Report
• Instructor-led courses via state of the art delivery
• Aligned to technical career paths in your industry
• Selected and managed by leading telecom organizations

NACTEL give you choices for your technical education.

A.S. Degrees
• Telecom
• Video
• Mobile Technology
• Networking
• Wireless Networking
• CyberSecurity (coming soon)

B.S. Degrees
• Professional Technology - Telecom Concentration
• Technology Leadership (coming soon) 

M.S. Degree
• Internet Technology

These credentials are stackable, each one builds on the next, so there are no wasted courses when moving up the educational ladder with NACTEL.

To learn more about these NACTEL programs, visit

Take the first step and attend a Virtual Open House on September 16 to hear from and ask questions of the university staff. It is quick and easy!

In This Issue

• Keep Your Classes Rolling Along This Summer
• NACTEL's 15th Anniversary!
• May Means Graduations!
• NACTEL Introduces 'David Sachs Award' at 2014 Graduation
• NACTEL Partners
• Industry News
• Tech LOL
• Edwin Sanchez – NACTEL Service Award Winner

NACTEL's 15th Anniversary!

This May, NACTEL turned 15! Just like in the beginning, when the first NACTEL class was launched with Pace University's Associate's program in Telecommunications, we continue to be attuned to the critical employment needs of the industry and the importance of education to help develop the skills of the industry's workforce.

As it was back in 1999, telecommunications remains an industry considerably driven by technological innovations and advancements. Even more so than in NACTEL's early days, the future of telecommunications is dependent on highly-skilled, highly-trained workers to drive the industry forward.

We are extremely proud of what NACTEL has done in bringing together telecommunications employers, labor unions, and higher education institutions to create and sponsor online education programs by the industry, for the industry. We look forward to many years more of efforts on behalf of the industry, which will continue to play a vital role connecting individuals and households, as well as in supporting the everyday operations of small businesses and large-scale industries contributing to our nation's economy. 

"Onward and upward, NACTEL!" – Susan Kannel, Executive Director, NACTEL 

May Means Graduations!

NACTEL's most recent graduates were honored at a luncheon at Pace University on May 20, 2014 in New York City. NACTEL graduates, who were able to travel to New York City, were joined by their guests as well as the NACTEL Board of Directors and by representatives from Pace University. 

Congratulations to the NACTEL Class of 2014!

View the latest graduates.

NACTEL Introduces 'David Sachs Award' at 2014 Graduation

The first David Sachs NACTEL Service Award was presented during the NACTEL graduation luncheon. The award is given to an Associate's or Bachelor's graduate who maintained a minimum GPA of 3.25 and best demonstrated, among their student peers, persistence towards degree completion, as well as assistance and encouragement to fellow scholastic colleagues. The award recipient was recognized for their accomplishments and received two-hundred dollars from NACTEL.

The award honors Dr. David Sachs, who contributed to the establishment of the NACTEL program at Pace University and is widely recognized for pioneering innovative practices in online higher education.

"If David has one signature accomplishment, it's this that he did more than anybody to make NACTEL a program that imparted academic excellence in a caring learning environment, one that met the needs of far-flung, virtual students with many demands in their lives," says C. James Spellane, a media advisor for the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) and a member of the NACTEL Board of Directors. "I know David is proud of the recognition NACTEL has received from U.S. News and World Report and from within the industry. But I strongly suspect that he is most proud of the fact that he helped so many dedicated students achieve their educational goals."  

NACTEL Partners

AT&T Expanding Fiber Network to another 100 U.S. Cities
AT&T is expanding its ultra-fast fiber network to up to 100 candidate cities and municipalities nationwide, including 21 additional major metropolitan areas. The fiber network will deliver AT&T U-verse which can deliver broadband speeds up to 1 Gigabit per second as well as advanced TV services. Read more here.

Industry News

The Future Looks Cloud-y
Amazon, Microsoft, and now Cisco – big-name tech companies are stepping up to develop cloud computing services for businesses wanting to update their infrastructure and save maintenance costs.

Cisco Systems Inc. plans to offer cloud computing services, pledging to spend $1-billion over the next two years to enter a market currently led by the world's biggest online retailer Inc. Cisco said it will spend the amount to build data centers to help run the new service called Cisco Cloud Services. Read more here.

Demand for cloud service professionals is growing, and will continue to grow. Brush up on your education at NACTEL and get your head in the Cloud - in a good way! View NACTEL'S programs and start learning today.

Meet NACTEL: Dr. David Sachs

As part of NACTEL's 15th anniversary, we decided to highlight some of the people who were part of NACTEL's early years. This month, we introduce you to David Sachs, Associate Dean from Pace University:

Q: You were part of the original team that built NACTEL in 1998-1999. What do you remember from those early years?
A: I remember how exciting it was to be planning to offer an online AS in Telecommunications degree 100% online. Not many people were offering online education in those days, so it felt very new and exciting to be doing that. I also remember how much we had to learn – about the technology and about the telecom industry and about the unions and about the companies. We all spent a lot of time learning how to work together – and listening carefully to each other and to feedback from students was an important part of the discussion. I remember that we spent a lot of time in those early days worrying about the bandwidth that people might be using to access our courses – and about how much video we could use.

Q: And you've remained connected to NACTEL until very recently. How do you see NACTEL today?
A: I think that the NACTEL program is a strong and vibrant program that represents some of the best online education in the United States. The program has grown enormously since 1999; now there are many AS degrees, and a BS completion degree, and even some MS degrees. I know that faculty and staff continue to work to keep courses and content current and exciting and engaging. I know that students continue to work hard to earn their degrees and to stay current in an industry that seems to be constantly changing. The NACTEL program has significantly impacted Pace University; we now have about 2,500 students each year (out of 15,000) taking one or more courses online – which was not true when we first began. The University also now offers the iPace program, which was modeled after the NACTEL BS completion degree.

Q: What new things are you involved with now?
A: I have been involved for the past two years in developing and teaching Social Media and Web 2.0 Productivity Tools courses to both undergraduates and graduates. There is a lot going on in this area, and it seems like there is always more to learn. The teaching is fun and interesting and very rewarding. And, I have been involved in a telehealth initiative that focuses on remote patient monitoring of older adults (65+) who have chronic diseases. There is a lot of research that says that if you can deploy remote patient monitoring with these individuals, you can significantly lower their needs for hospitalization and emergency room visits. It is very interesting. I co-wrote a large grant proposal that was just funded for the next three years – so there is a lot of work to be done.

Q: Any advice for current or future NACTEL students?
A: Yes – keep on with your education. All of the statistics say that it is a great way to improve your income, your quality of life, and your professional opportunities. The telecommunications area has changed enormously during the past 15 years – and in some respects it feels like we are just getting started. I have always believed that education is a great way to take advantage of such opportunities.

Q: Anything the world should know about you? (Here's your chance!)
A: Sure. Life is good. I feel extremely privileged to have been involved in the NACTEL program since its inception in 1999 – and now, with social media and telehealth on the horizon, there is clearly much to look forward to. I have time to spend with my family, to travel to some interesting places, and my health is good. So, life is good.

Thanks to David for his early vision and leadership!

Tech LOL- Hands Free

Read the article here.

Edwin Sanchez - NACTEL Service Award Winner

For the inaugural David Sachs NACTEL Service Award, NACTEL recognized Edwin Sanchez of Verizon Wireless, who graduated in May with his Bachelor of Science in Telecommunications.

"Even though as students we are all different, we still have a lot of common ground," says Sanchez, who previously earned his Associate's degree in Wireless Networking from the NACTEL program in 2011. "We all work in the same field; we all have family responsibilities, and we all know what it's like when we have to drop everything for a national emergency. For my co-students and me it was Superstorm Sandy, but together we found a way to get through it and complete our NACTEL coursework."

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