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Glowpoint shines on West Morris Regional District

July 18, 2013 | Telepresence Options

glow point

Story by Bob Thomas / New Jersey Hills

WASHINGTON TWP.--Students at West Morris Central and Mendham High Schools will benefit from a $2 million technology investment by a private firm.

The price tag represents immersive telepresence systems and monitors which are being gifted by Glowpoint Inc. of Murray Hill, as a pilot program promoting the use of their technology in schools.

Schools Superintendent Mackey Pendergrast said the company had reached out to the district after Tom Schroeder, a Long Valley executive at Glowpoint, had been impressed by the spring technology forum and the digital objectives of the district.

Schroeder, senior vice president of operations at Glowpoint, is a West Morris Central High School graduate.

"When he saw the commitment we were making at the Community Technology Forum and other initiatives, he knew his company was looking for a school district to demonstrate their systems and the needs seemed to coincide," Pendergrast said. "Schroeder started with a casual conversation with Ken Schilling (West Morris Central athletic director) and the concept grew from there. It seemed like a really great marriage."

Pendergrast anticipates installation of two large systems in dedicated Digital Collaboration Centers, one at each district high school.

The core systems will have two, 42-inch display screens each. As many as 11 units of different sizes will be used to eventually add access in classrooms and possibly provide partnerships with International Baccalaureate (IB) schools around the world.

Pendergrast expects the centers to begin development later in the year, after the district meets its other technology initiatives for the beginning of the school year, including enhanced bandwidth and ubiquitous WIFI availability.

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