ANN ARBOR, Mich. and ROHNERT PARK, Calif. – Merit Network, Inc. and Internet2 announced today the launch of participation in the Internet2 NET+ Regional Partner Program for members of CENIC, the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California. Eligible CENIC Members now have the opportunity to purchase a diverse suite of Internet2 NET+ Services from leading brands at best-in-class pricing through Merit.
CENIC, Merit and Internet2 made the announcement on the campus of Sonoma State University, host of CENIC’s 2014 Annual Conference. This comes after Merit became the first Research and Education (R&E) Network to participate in the NET+ Regional Partner Program and offer Internet2 NET+ Services to its Members in Michigan.
The Internet2 NET+ initiative is about creating and sustaining value for the research and educational community in their use of cloud services. By establishing a unified, integrated portfolio of cloud and trust solutions, blending both commercial services and community offerings, Internet2 makes these available via the advanced Internet2 Network. This allows Internet2 to support an individual to quickly and easily log into a cloud service using their campus’s assigned identity using Internet2’s Trust and Identity services.
“This partnership serves as a great example for other regionals to work together to extend the Internet2 NET+ program to reach the entire non-profit research and education community,” said Shelton Waggener, senior vice president, Internet2. “This arrangement with Merit and CENIC launches a new stage in furthering the vision of the Internet2 community transforming education from kindergarten to higher education.”
Through the NET+ Regional Partner Program, select Internet2 NET+ Services, which were previously only available to Internet2 member institutions, are now available to eligible members of participating NET+ Regional Partners, like Merit and CENIC.
“I am proud to announce this innovative partnership between Merit, CENIC and Internet2. It will deliver considerable benefits for CENIC Members, providing access to a broad portfolio of cloud services available to their community at discounted rates. The participation of CENIC will benefit institutions in California and Michigan as well–and potentially many more R&E members nationwide. Leveraging economies of scale is critical to the success of initiatives like the NET+ Regional Partner Program. Merit has the existing infrastructure and resources in place to serve members of other R&E networks. We believe that the more members of the education and non-profit community we can help benefit from this program, the better off we will all be,” said Don Welch, president and CEO, Merit Network.
“We at CENIC are pleased and excited to be working with Merit to offer Internet2 NET+ Services to our Community Colleges and the K12 schools,” said Louis Fox, president and CEO, CENIC.
A key value Merit brings to the NET+ Regional Partner Program is its existing infrastructure devoted to IT services sales and support. An evolving process, Merit has participated in the development and deployment of services for its Membership for the better part of the past decade. Merit currently has technical and administrative resources internally to support deployment of Internet2 NET+ Services. The more organizations that are able to leverage those resources, the more cost-effective the program will be.
The NET+ Services available through the Regional Partner Program support the teaching, learning, research and operational needs of CENIC and Merit Members. The following services are available today for CENIC and Merit Member educational institutions:
These additional NET+ Internet2 services and targeted for future availability to CENIC Merit Members based on expressed interest include:
- Office 365 Education
The NET+ Initiative strives to ensure that all NET+ Services are easily accessible and simple to administer. This is secured through national partnerships with special business terms. Services are turnkey ready, with pre-negotiated SLAs (service level agreements) that save participating institutions administrative time and resources.
With NET+ Services, institutions benefit from connections throughout the education and non-profit community for more efficient, effective solutions. Internet2 NET+ Services are identified, evaluated and vetted by Internet2 member institutions. Each service is backed by an advisory group made up of peer institutions that assist with service implementation, troubleshooting and provide ongoing support.
CENIC Members interested in purchasing services through the Internet2 NET+ Regional Partner Program should contact a member of the Merit Sales Team. Send an email to [email protected] or call 734-527-5785.
About Merit Network
Merit Network Inc., is a nonprofit corporation owned and governed by Michigan’s public universities. Merit owns and operates America’s longest-running regional research and education network. In 1966, Michigan’s public universities created Merit as a shared resource to help meet their common need for networking assistance. Since its formation, Merit Network has remained at the forefront of research and education networking expertise and services. Merit provides high-performance networking and IT solutions to Michigan’s public universities, colleges, K-12 organizations, libraries, state government, healthcare, and other non-profit organizations.
California’s education and research communities leverage their networking resources under CENIC, the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California, in order to obtain cost-effective, high-bandwidth networking to support their missions and respond to the needs of their faculty, staff, and students. CENIC designs, implements, and operates CalREN, the California Research and Education Network, a high-bandwidth, high-capacity Internet network specially designed to meet the unique requirements of these communities, and to which the vast majority of the state’s research and education institutions are connected. In order to facilitate collaboration in education and research, CENIC also provides connectivity to non-California institutions and industry research organizations with which CENIC’s Associate researchers and educators are engaged.
For more information: www.cenic.org
CENIC Media contact:
Phone: (818) 823-3677
Email: [email protected]
Internet2 is a member-owned advanced technology community founded by the nation’s leading higher education institutions in 1996. Internet2 provides a collaborative environment for U.S. research and education organizations to solve common technology challenges, and to develop innovative solutions in support of their educational, research, and community service missions.
Internet2 consists of more than 250 U.S. universities, 80 leading corporations, 70 affiliate members and government agencies, 39 regional and state education networks and more than 65 national research and education networking partners representing more than 100 countries. Internet2 offices are located in Ann Arbor, Mich.; Emeryville, Calif.; and Washington, D.C. For more information, visit www.internet2.edu or follow @Internet2 on Twitter.
Internet2 Media Contact:
Phone: (202) 331-5373
Email: [email protected]