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Sixty desks, spread out across the expansive floor, occupy a good portion of the Essex County College’s Gymnasium basketball court. Normally the home of ECC’s successful Wolverine basketball teams, the Gym now serves a new role during the COVID-19 pandemic: Internet Café.
With the College offering a majority of classes through remote instruction, it has created a number of challenges for students, especially those with limited or no access to the Internet and computers.
The Internet Café, open 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday, has been designed to provide a safe and secure space for computer work. Students can even borrow fully charged iPads and Notebooks for use in the Café. The Internet Café aide will provide students with the password for borrowed equipment. Students may also
Internet Cafe computers available for borrowing
bring their own computer equipment.
The Café’s available bandwidth capability allows more stations to be added as needed.
“I’m very impressed by the support of the College staff, especially IT, in creating this innovative, customized Internet Café for our students. “The Café has been designed for student success as we continue dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Acting/Interim President Dr. Augustine Boakye during a tour of the facility.
“We know remote instruction has created challenges beyond the normal rigors of college. The Internet Café is just one way of lessening the pressure and ensuring you stay on track toward reaching your academic goals,” Dr. Boakye said.
During the pandemic, Essex County College follows all CDC health and safety guidelines, including social distancing. The stations are positioned to maintain at least six feet between students and staff. Wearing a mask on campus is mandatory, and that includes the Internet Café. In addition, disinfectants and hand sanitizers are available for Internet Café users.