NPR: "Help is on the way"

The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, championed by House Democrats and signed into law by President Biden yesterday, will close America’s digital divide and expand educational and economic opportunity to the estimated 42 million Americans who currently lack reliable at-home broadband.

House Democrats have long advocated for an expansion of broadband access, with “expand[ing] affordable high-speed internet access, including through the accelerated deployment of 5G wireless infrastructure” contained within their Make It In America plan to unlock economic opportunity and strengthen America’s middle class. By delivering this once-in-a-generation investment in our wireless infrastructure, Democrats have made good on their goal of connecting Americans with good-paying jobs, pathways to education, and opportunities to build better lives for their families.

Check out more on this from NPR: Students are still struggling to get internet. The infrastructure law could help ⬇️
“In many parts of the country, access to a strong internet connection isn't a given. The Hope Center at Temple University reported in March that about 40% of college students have struggled with internet or computer access during the pandemic. The real number may be much higher: The report noted that, because the research relied on student responses from an online survey, ‘inadequate internet access could have contributed to low response rates.’”

“But help is on the way. President Biden signed the infrastructure package into law on Monday. It includes $65 billion for improving broadband. The majority of that money goes toward creating access and improving speed. It's poised to help students across the country, especially those living in rural areas and tribal communities.”

“‘This is going to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to pour in this much money,’ says Christopher Ali, [internet access researcher] at UVA. ‘For students who are un- and under-connected, this will hopefully make a tremendous difference in their online learning experiences or just in their educational experiences more generally.’ He's hopeful the infrastructure law will help reframe the way we think about the internet. ‘It's no longer a luxury, but let's start thinking about it as infrastructure, as essential as a paved road or a sewer system.’”