Four County EMC Partners With Pender County Schools & ATMC to Bring Internet to Students Amidst COVID-19 Pandemic

Pender County, NC – Four County EMC has partnered with Pender County Schools and ATMC to create four Wi-Fi hotspots that will allow Pender County families to access educational material for their school-aged children while schools are currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Wi-Fi access points are located at Pender High School, Heide Trask Senior High School, Topsail High School and the Pender County Public Library in Burgaw. The hotspots have a range of several hundred feet and will be available seven days a week from the hours of 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

“Last Monday, a lot of students and their families picked up Chromebooks from our schools in anticipation of online learning becoming necessary. With help from our community partners, including ATMC, Four County Electric, the Pender County Government and NCDOT, we’re trying to make sure our students have the opportunity to access the information they need to keep learning,” commented Pender County Schools Superintendent, Dr. Steven Hill.

 Four County Electric Membership Corporation’s CEO, Mitchell Keel, also commented saying “As one of the current broadband providers for Pender County Schools, we knew we needed to come up with an innovative solution to keep students connected while schools are closed due to the pandemic. We are happy that this partnership with ATMC and Pender County Schools allowed us to create hotspots that will allow many students the ability to keep up with their schoolwork.”

 Yesterday, Governor Cooper announced in a press conference that North Carolina public schools will be closed until May 15, meaning that the need for internet access will be crucial in keeping students connected to their teachers and to their schoolwork.

“These are really unprecedented times, and ATMC is glad that we can help,” said Keith Holden, ATMC CEO. “We were proud to be able to work with Four County EMC and Pender County Schools to design and implement a solution that will be critical to keeping students connected.”

For information regarding how to utilize the Wi-Fi access points, visit the Pender County Schools website.

About Four County Electric

Four County EMC serves approximately 32,500 members throughout Bladen, Duplin, Pender, Sampson, Columbus, and Onslow counties. For more information about the electric cooperative, visit our website.

About ATMC

ATMC is a member-owned cooperative providing a multitude of communications services, including telephone, business services, wireless, broadband internet, cable television, and ATMC Security, in Brunswick County, North Carolina. ATMC provides services in additional areas through its wholly-owned subsidiary, ATMC, LLC. ATMC is the largest communications cooperative in North Carolina and one of the largest in the country. ATMC recently submitted a USDA ReConnect grant application to serve more than 6,000 homes in rural Pender County.  If awarded, the grant will allow ATMC to serve areas where high-speed internet is not currently available. For more information on ATMC products and services, visit the ATMC website.