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December 07, 2018

AT&T Virtual Reality Experience Tour to Stop in Charleston

Posted by AT&T West Virginia Team

Striking 3D Experience Will Show West Virginians Dangers of Smartphone Distracted Driving

AT&T will wrap up its 2018 AT&T* It Can Wait tour with two stops in Charleston, illustrating the dangers of smartphone distracted driving.

On December 8, the tour will stop at the AT&T retail store at 2801 Mountaineer Blvd., in South Charleston from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.  On December 10, the tour will stop at Riverside High School at 1 Warrior Way, Bell, WV in the Auxiliary Gym. 

Research shows that nearly 9-in-10 people admit to using their smartphone while driving.1 People are doing much more than texting while behind the wheel. 

To illustrate this for drivers of all ages, we will set up its virtual reality experience at an AT&T store and Riverside High School, enabling customers, students and school staff to come face-to-face with the very real dangers of distracted driving through a memorial wall, a wall of keys representing lives lost and a wall made to look like crushed car parts.

“Hundreds of people die, and thousands of crashes occur every year from smartphone use while driving, which is why this campaign is so important in West Virginia and across the nation,” said Andy Feeney, AT&T External Affairs.  “We started the 2018 tour in Charleston, and we’re wrapping up the year here to help drive home this life-saving message.”

The events are part of the 200-city tour across the U.S.

“Distracted driving is dangerous driving” said Corporal Rich Lane, Riverside High School's Resource Officer.  “AT&T's virtual reality simulator helps educate students to the very real consequences of texting while driving.  We're grateful to AT&T for sharing this important teaching resource with our Riverside High School community.” 

It Can Wait is a national movement urging drivers to keep their eyes on the road, not on their phones—distracted driving is never OK. The campaign began with a focus on not texting and driving. We’ve now expanded it to the broader dangers of smartphone use behind the wheel.

Since its launch in 2010, the campaign has:

  • Helped grow awareness of the dangers of smartphone distracted driving to nearly all of those surveyed. 1
  • Inspired more than 33 million pledges to not drive distracted.
  • Collaborated with AT&T data scientists on research that shows how statewide anti-texting laws impact the rate of texting while driving. 

To learn more, go to ItCanWait.com.


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1 Online survey with 7,505 respondents (total distracted drivers n=6,438) conducted by Kantar Added Value. Ongoing survey, data represented here were collected January 2017- December 2017. National panel sample (ages 15-54, drive, and have a smartphone).

 

October 05, 2018

AT&T Launches 5G Evolution in Wheeling

Posted by AT&T West Virginia Team
This Lays the Foundation for Future Mobile 5G Wireless Connectivity Locally

AT&T* is proud to make the best network according to America’s biggest test1 even better by announcing the launch of 5G Evolution network technologies in Wheeling today. This is one of the 239 markets where this technology is live. We plan to offer 5G Evolution in over 400 markets by the end of the year. In the first half of 2019 we plan to offer nationwide coverage, making 5G Evolution available to over 200 million people.

5G Evolution markets are locations where we’ve deployed technologies that enable a peak theoretical speed for capable devices of at least 400 megabits per second.2 With 5G Evolution technologies, AT&T is laying the foundation for our path to mobile 5G. With 5G Evolution, residents and businesses of Wheeling will experience the next generation of mobile connectivity.

Check out this blog from Kevin Petersen, senior vice president of device and network experiences, to learn where 5G Evolution technologies are available, a list of capable devices and more about how these technologies continue to lay the foundation for mobile 5G.

“Private sector investment in technology infrastructure in West Virginia is something we appreciate and in many cases depend on,” said Erikka Storch, President, Wheeling Area Chamber of Commerce. “AT&T’s rollout of 5G Evolution in Wheeling will help our businesses, residents and visitors take advantage of future technologies and opportunities.”

“Our 5G Evolution technology boosts the existing LTE network and primes it for the future of connectivity,” said J. Michael Schweder, president, AT&T Mid Atlantic.  “We can enable faster speeds now, and upgrade to 5G when it’s ready. We’re pleased to bring these advances into more communities today.”

And, as mobile data usage continues to rise – an increase of more than 360,000% on our network in the past 7 years – our investment in 5G Evolution is crucial to deliver standards-based mobile 5G networks starting in 2018. We plan to introduce standards-based mobile 5G in 12 cities this year, reaching a total of at least 19 cities in early 2019.

We’ve invested more than $150 million in our West Virginia wireless and wired networks during 2015-2017. These investments bring the latest in connectivity to people across the state and boost reliability, coverage, speed and overall performance for residents and businesses. We’ve also improved critical services that support public safety and first responders. In 2017, AT&T made more than 530 wireless network upgrades in West Virginia.


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1 Based on GWS OneScore Sept. 2018. Excludes crowd source studies.

2 Actual speeds are lower and will vary.  See http://about.att.com/sites/broadband/performance for more information on wireless speeds.

*About AT&T Communications

We help family, friends and neighbors connect in meaningful ways every day. From the first phone call 140+ years ago to mobile video streaming, we innovate to improve lives. We have the nation’s largest and most reliable network and the nation’s best network for video streaming.** We’re building FirstNet just for first responders and creating next-generation mobile 5G. With DIRECTV and DIRECTV NOW, we deliver entertainment people love to talk about. Our smart, highly secure solutions serve over 3 million global businesses – nearly all of the Fortune 1000. And worldwide, our spirit of service drives employees to give back to their communities.  AT&T Communications is part of AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T). Learn more at att.com/CommunicationsNews.

AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc. Additional information about AT&T products and services is available at about.att.com. Follow our news on Twitter at @ATT, on Facebook at facebook.com/att and on YouTube at youtube.com/att.

© 2018 AT&T Intellectual Property. All rights reserved. AT&T, the Globe logo and other marks are trademarks and service marks of AT&T Intellectual Property and/or AT&T affiliated companies. All other marks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.

**Coverage not available everywhere. Based on overall coverage in U.S. licensed/roaming areas. Reliability based on voice and data performance from independent 3rd party data.

Cautionary Language Concerning Forward-Looking Statements

Information set forth in this news release contains financial estimates and other forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties, and actual results might differ materially. A discussion of factors that may affect future results is contained in AT&T’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. AT&T disclaims any obligation to update and revise statements contained in this news release based on new information or otherwise.

This news release may contain certain non-GAAP financial measures. Reconciliations between the non-GAAP financial measures and the GAAP financial measures are available on the company’s website at https://investors.att.com.

August 17, 2018

AT&T Invests More Than $150 Million Over 3-Year Period to Boost Networks in West Virginia

Posted by AT&T West Virginia Team

At AT&T[i], we invested more than $150 million in our West Virginia wireless and wired networks during 2015-2017. These investments boost reliability, coverage, speed and overall performance for residents and businesses. They also improve critical services that support public safety and first responders.

The AT&T LTE network now covers more than 400 million people in North America. In 2017, AT&T made greater than 530 wireless network upgrades in West Virginia.

“For West Virginia to attract new jobs and spur innovation, sustained private sector investment is essential,” said J. Michael Schweder, president, AT&T Mid-Atlantic States. “We’re investing in our infrastructure in the Mountain State so that businesses, residents and visitors have the tools to stay connected and entertained.”

Since the formation of the FirstNet public-private partnership a little over a year ago, governors from all 50 states, 5 territories and Washington, D.C. recognized the value of FirstNet, joining in its mission to strengthen and modernize public safety’s communications capabilities.

FirstNet is a new nationwide communications platform dedicated to America’s public safety community. As we build, deploy and evolve FirstNet, we will build upon our current and planned investments in West Virginia to help ensure public safety’s network delivers the coverage and cutting-edge capabilities first responders expect – today and for decades to come.

For the 4th year in a row, AT&T earned the top spot in the telecommunications industry on FORTUNE’s Most Admired Companies list in 2018. We also placed No. 49 among the 50 most admired companies across all industries.

We were ranked first or second in all 9 attributes used to compile the list, including innovation, people management, quality of management, long-term investment value, quality of products/services and global competitiveness.

To learn more about our coverage in West Virginia, or anywhere in the U.S., visit the AT&T Coverage Viewer. For updates on the AT&T wireless network, please visit the AT&T network news page.

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[1] AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.

Cautionary Language Concerning Forward-Looking Statements

Information set forth in this news release contains financial estimates and other forward- looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties, and actual results may differ materially. A discussion of factors that may affect future results is contained in AT&T's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. AT&T disclaims any obligation to update or revise statements contained in this news release based on new information or otherwise.

April 26, 2018

AT&T Employees in West Virginia Honored for Their Commitment to the Community

Posted by AT&T West Virginia Team

More Than 4,300 AT&T Employees Nationwide Receive President’s Volunteer Service Award 

It’s National Volunteer Month. And AT&T is celebrating 6 employees in West Virginia being honored with the President’s Volunteer Service Award (PVSA).

The PVSA recognizes individuals who demonstrate a commitment to volunteerism throughout the year. These AT&T employees in West Virginia are among 4,386 AT&T employees nationwide to receive this honor. They logged a minimum of 100 service hours last year, with many volunteering more than 500 hours.

"AT&T employees are involved in serving their communities across the country, and their commitment is evident across our company,” said J. Michael Schweder, president, AT&T Mid-Atlantic. “AT&T congratulates this year’s PVSA award winners and celebrates all our employees who donate their time and talent to help make a positive impact on their community.”

Click here for a full list of all AT&T employee awardees in West Virginia and nationwide.

Nationwide, our employees volunteered more than 1.78 million hours of time in community outreach activities during 2017 — worth more than $42 million.* For more information on AT&T’s mentoring and volunteering programs, click here.

For more information on PVSA, visit www.presidentialserviceawards.gov.

*The Value of Volunteer Time, which is updated annually, is made available by Independent Sector. The current Independent Sector rate is $ $24.14 per hour (2016).

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March 22, 2018

AT&T Sets Up Virtual Reality Experience at West Virginia Department of Agriculture HQ

Posted by AT&T Newsroom

Experience Demonstrates for Department Staff the Dangers of Smartphone Distracted Driving

On March 22, 2018, AT&T and the West Virginia Department of Agriculture teamed up to remind agency staff about the dangers of smartphone distracted driving as part of AT&T’s  IT CAN WAIT campaign.

Research shows that 7-in-10 people engage in smartphone activities while driving.** People are doing much more than texting from behind the wheel. 

To drive home the message, AT&T set up a virtual reality simulator in the Atrium of the agency’s headquarters, allowing staff to experience firsthand how dangerous it is to take their eyes off the road and glance at a phone. The virtual reality experience was available employees from 10 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. as part of a training event.

IT CAN WAIT is a national movement urging drivers to keep their eyes on the road, not on their phones—distracted driving is never OK. The campaign began with a focus on not texting and driving. It has now expanded to the broader dangers of smartphone use behind the wheel. 

Since its launch in 2010, the campaign has:

  • Helped grow awareness of the dangers of smartphone distracted driving to nearly 90% of audiences surveyed.
  • Inspired more than 23 million pledges to not drive distracted.
  • Worked with departments of transportation in Texas, Kentucky and other states on research that suggests a correlation between It Can Wait campaign activities and a reduction in crashes.
  • Collaborated with AT&T data scientists on research that shows how statewide anti-texting laws impact the rate of texting while driving. 

To learn more, visit ItCanWait.com

* AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.
**Research commissioned by AT&T and conducted by Braun Research. Polled 2,067 people in the U.S. aged 16-65 who use their smartphone and drive at least once a day. Additional information available here

January 09, 2018

AT&T helps celebrate Reconnecting McDowell Partnership’s Sixth Anniversary, announces $200,000 contribution

Posted by AT&T West Virginia Team

Gains cited in McDowell’s student performance, access to health-social-emotional services

Launched six years ago by Gayle Manchin and the American Federation of Teachers to help revive an Appalachian county struggling with decades-long academic challenges and socio-economic devastation, the Reconnecting McDowell public-private partnership today is celebrating tangible improvements and looking forward to more years of efforts to lift people’s well-being in McDowell County, W.Va.

On January 9, in an acknowledgment of genuine success, AT&T—one of more than 125 partners—announced it is making a second substantial contribution to Reconnecting McDowell’s Broader Horizons high school mentoring program. The company has contributed $200,000 to support Broader Horizons for the next two years. The latest contribution builds on a previous $300,000 contribution that enabled 57 at-risk high school students to participate in Broader Horizons; all of them have graduated and enrolled in college or entered the military.

Reconnecting McDowell is an unprecedented effort spearheaded by the AFT to strengthen education outcomes by addressing the elephant in the room—poverty—and its consequences for students and their families. For decades, there had been a lack of access to healthcare, social and emotional services, role models for students, modern technology in schools and at home, jobs and other economic development opportunities.

“Over the past six years, we’ve demonstrated that when the broader community comes together and takes on seemingly intransigent issues facing a poverty-stricken area, we can make a difference in people’s lives,” said AFT President Randi Weingarten. “Reconnecting McDowell has found a way to try to break the cycle of chronic poverty and give today’s kids and families a path to a brighter future.”

Weingarten said one of the new focuses for 2018 will be career and technical education programs, which provide high school students with real-world training for jobs that need to be filled.

Gayle Manchin, chair of Reconnecting McDowell and West Virginia’s secretary of education and the arts, said: “Reconnecting McDowell is working because of the commitment of our partners—Fortune 500 corporations and labor unions; national, state and local nonprofits and agencies; parents and pastors; school personnel and students; and local residents who had all but given up hope that anyone cared about them for the long haul. Reconnecting McDowell has given them hope and real signs of improvement, but we know we are nowhere near declaring mission accomplished.”

One of the most successful programs over the past six years has been Broader Horizons, which provides mentors to high school students at risk of dropping out or who are dealing with serious personal difficulties. The program also takes the students to Charleston and Washington, D.C., during the school year to introduce them to a world of higher education and career possibilities. Since 2014, AT&T has contributed $500,000 to support the Broader Horizons program—part of AT&T Aspire, the company’s signature philanthropic initiative to drive student success in school and beyond.

“We saw a group of students who transformed before our eyes and became motivated to get a high school diploma and continue their education, thanks to caring mentors who became strong role models and helped the students see what they could offer the world if they worked hard,” said J. Michael Schweder, president, AT&T Mid-Atlantic. “Broader Horizons helps students make the connection between the classroom and the workplace and prepares them with the skills and experiences they will need to excel in whatever they choose to do.”

Read more at https://www.aft.org/press.

December 11, 2017

Happy Holidays!

Posted by J. Michael Schweder

We are closing out the year just the way we started it: connecting people to opportunity. From connecting the U.S. Army and all our customers to their world, to connecting West Virginians to new jobs and even connecting students to academic & career training, at its core, this is what all of us at AT&T do every day. I am so proud of what we have accomplished this year in West Virginia, and as I look forward to 2018, I am excited for what is to come. But before we get to January, I want to wish all of you, your family and your friends a happy holiday season and a happy New Year!

Best wishes,

J. Michael Schweder
President — AT&T Mid-Atlantic


Jobs for West Virginia’s Graduates and AT&T Team Up to Provide Academic and Career Training

Support is part of a $3.5 million contribution to Jobs for America’s Graduates and will help reach more West Virginia youth at risk of dropping out of high school.

JAG

Jobs for West Virginia Graduates (JWVG) and AT&T are working together to help raise the high school graduation rate and support career paths for underserved students. Because of its success in keeping kids in school, Jobs for West Virginia’s Graduates was one of 34 state affiliates selected to share in $3.5 million from AT&T. JWVG received $75,000.

The JAG program equips students to overcome obstacles to a high school diploma or High School Equivalency Test. The program does this through mentoring, academic support, links to social services, and other interventions. Students are guided into post-secondary education, entry-level jobs with pathways to successful careers or the military.

The organization will use approximately $60,000 from AT&T to launch new JWVG programs at Lincoln County High School and the Randolph County Career Technology Center, as well as to support the continuation of programs at Westside and Wyoming East High Schools and the Wyoming County Career Technology Center. The remaining $15,000 from AT&T is being used to sustain the organization's work in Greenbrier County, according to JWVG Executive Director W. Brent Sturm.

Sturm said the support from AT&T was instrumental in JWVG receiving $130,000 in matching funds from the Appalachian Regional Commission.

“Gov. Jim Justice and Secretary Woody Thrasher have seen what Jobs for West Virginia’s Graduates’ staff and students can achieve when given just a little more help — help with academic remediation, help with navigating college financial aid, and often just general help with becoming and being an adult,” said Sturm. “With the support of The AT&T Foundation, the Appalachian Regional Commission, a terrific staff, and dedicated students, we were able to bring JWVG back from 3 schools to our current 11. We believe that we can change the future of West Virginia, and we’re doing it one mortarboard at a time.”

Appalachian Regional Commission funding requires local matching dollars. The AT&T Foundation has provided the bulk of those funds for the JWVG programs in Lincoln, Randolph and Wyoming counties. Each county Board of Education also contributes to the cost of the program. Donations from other corporations, civic organizations, local businesses and individuals provide most of the financial support for JWVG’s work.

“Helping students develop the skills they need to succeed in 21st century careers is a critical step to building the diverse workforce we need to power our company — and our country — for the future,” said J. Michael Schweder, president, AT&T Mid-Atlantic. “JAG has a track record of success, and this funding will allow them to provide even more students the opportunity to thrive.”

In 2016, JAG’s network of affiliates reported a 95% high school graduation rate, compared to the national graduation rate of 83% in 2015¹. Currently, the JAG model is offered in nearly 1,250 public high schools, community colleges, and alternative learning centers in 34 states.

Deirdre Cline, superintendent, Wyoming County Schools recently wrote: "JWVG helps students in a myriad of ways, and we believe it is an important piece of our dropout prevention efforts and our success in graduation rates."

Sturm said Jobs for West Virginia’s Graduates is one of the highest performing affiliates of Jobs for America’s Graduates, the largest and most successful dropout prevention and school-to-work support programs in the nation. JWVG has earned the prestigious “5 of 5” National Performance Standards Award for 7 of the past 10 years! The full-time Job Specialists assigned to each High School the program serves are held accountable not only for getting their students through high school to graduation, but also for getting them connected to the workforce and/or post-secondary education within 12 months of graduation.

In more than 3 decades of operation, JAG has helped more than 1.2 million young people nationwide stay in school through graduation, pursue post-secondary education and secure quality, entry-level jobs leading to career advancement opportunities. The JAG Graduating Class of 2016 achieved 84% successful outcomes, meaning students were enrolled in post-secondary education, were employed, or some combination of the two within 12 months after they graduated from high school.

Since 2008, AT&T and the AT&T Foundation have provided more than $11.4 million in funding to JAG and its local affiliates. This support is part of AT&T Aspire, which helps provide access to education and training people need to get and keep good jobs. Since 2008, AT&T has committed $400 million to help millions of students in all 50 states and around the world.

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¹Alliance for Excellent Education. U.S. High School Graduation Rate Hits All-Time High: A Time for Celebration and Rededication, Oct. 25, 2016.

December 10, 2017

Don't Be One of the 5%

Posted by AT&T West Virginia Team

cyberaware

Five percent of consumers in the U.S. text their passwords to their accounts (not a good idea) … 5% of consumers use consecutive letters or numbers for their passwords (you might as well text those passwords to the bad guys in the first place) … 5% of consumers provide their personal or financial info to an email sender without verifying who they are.

The good news is that most Americans know that these are things we should not be doing online if we want to protect ourselves. The challenge is that the crooks are getting smarter, making it harder for consumers to know what to do to protect themselves online. That’s why AT&T just launched att.com/CyberAware.

Bookmark — and regularly visit — this site to learn about the latest tips for protecting yourself and your family, and stay up to date on the latest threats. From ID theft, to malware to robocalls and other concerns, we’ve put the resources all in one place.

*FleishmanHillard survey, on behalf of AT&T, of 1,020 American consumers age 18 and older online between Sept. 28 and Oct. 1, 2017

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December 09, 2017

Small Cells: preparing the future for wireless

Posted by AT&T West Virginia Team

From January 2007 through December 2016, AT&T experienced a 250,000% increase in data usage on our network. And, as streaming video continues to become more prominent and new apps and services are introduced, this growth in data usage will continue to rise.

With this mounting pressure on the mobile network, AT&T is developing additional innovative ways to enhance its existing networks, prepare for the technologies of the future — such as 5G, smart cities and new developments in the Internet of Things (IoT) — and provide the best possible experience for our customers.

With these ends in mind, we need to make installing important infrastructure, such as “small cells,” easier. By providing more targeted network capacity, small cells can make the wireless internet we depend on faster and more reliable.

Small cellsSmall cells help bring the network "closer" to its users to deliver increased data capacity, faster connectivity speeds and an overall better wireless experience.

As we work to expand and implement this new technology across our network, some will undoubtedly ask, “What does the future hold for high-speed wireless internet?” The possibilities are endless. With increased connectivity speeds and network capacity, small cell deployment will help enhance and support a host of innovative services, such as telemedicine, connected cars, distance learning, smart homes, smart farms and even entire Smart Cities, with each contributing to a stronger, more connected network.

In West Virginia, AT&T is actively engaging with local governments across our state on the deployment of small cell infrastructure, working to provide the best possible experience today while laying the foundation for tomorrow’s wireless capabilities.

To learn more about AT&T’s leadership in the Internet of Things and Smart Cities evolution, please click here.

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December 08, 2017

U.S. Army Chooses AT&T for Modernized Global Communications

Posted by AT&T West Virginia Team

Army

With nearly 1 million users globally, the U.S. Army has chosen AT&T for its latest contract to unify and modernize their communications capabilities.

We’re providing the Army with a new way to think about connectivity. Our services will make it easier for Army personnel to connect, collaborate and share information in support of daily operations globally. These services include voice, video, chat, instant messaging, presence and screen sharing. Army mechanics overseas can share screens with experts at a home station to speed repairs. Commanders and their staffs can use live video links to collaborate across different locations or direct troop operations abroad.

Army personnel in the U.S. and abroad will have access to these services on demand from their desktops, laptops and approved mobile devices. The Army will not need to buy new equipment. The services are cloud-based, and we will manage them. We are also delivering them in classified and highly secure unclassified formats.

“We’re honored to deliver capabilities that complement our vision of a ‘Network of the Future’ for the Army,” said Kay Kapoor, president, AT&T Global Public Sector. “These services will help the heroes who defend our nation to connect, share and keep us safe.”

The U.S. Army’s modernization efforts align with Department of Defense strategies to maintain the military’s technological advantage through the use of commercial cloud services.

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