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SYBAC Students Visit Capitol and Meet with State Leaders

Luke Baker, Kourtney Ross, Vincent Hesselink, Anton Hesselink, Tyler Emanuel
Luke Baker, Kourtney Ross, Anton Hesselink, Vincent Hesselink, Tyler Emanuel

High school students from across Iowa experienced the opportunity on Tuesday, April 12, to visit and tour the State Capitol in Des Moines, meet with government leadership, and have a one-on-one discussion with Governor Reynolds’ Chief Operating Officer (COO) Taryn Frideres. The student participants are part of the 2021-2022 Statewide Youth Broadband Advisory Council (SYBAC) sponsored by the Iowa Communications Network (ICN). SYBAC members provided the ICN with insight into the use of technology by today’s youth and how the increased use of technology in schools affects their education.

The ICN established the SYBAC program as a way to engage Iowa students on technology issues. The students are given the opportunity to learn about state initiatives and educational opportunities in addition to sharing their opinions.

Throughout the school year, the students met by video monthly and learned about a variety of technology topics, such as:

  • Technology in healthcare from the Iowa Hospital Association.
  • Iowa’s initiative of automated transportation from the Iowa Department of Transportation.
  • FirstNet and how it relates to the Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management and 9-1-1 initiatives.
  • The importance of cybersecurity, protecting Iowa schools from security incidents, and ICN’s DDoS Mitigation service.
  • ICN's robust and statewide infrastructure, including the security services provided to healthcare, government, public safety, and education customers.

In addition to touring the Capitol and meeting with the Governor’s COO, SYBAC students toured the ICN’s Broadband Information Center and learned about a local datacenter.

Taryn Frideres sitting to the left of the students sitting in folding chairs  Scott Pappan pointing to a large monitor while students and parents listened

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