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3Com Aids 150, 000 Pupils With Outreach Programme

CAPE TOWN -- 3Com is helping Penryn College, a private school in Mapumalanga, with its community outreach programme, designed to assist less well-equipped schools in the region.

The PenReach programme, as it's called, is an intitiative designed to provide in-service training to teachers, upgrade school management and empower governing bodies. An essential part of this training and development is the EDUCATE project.

EDUCATE stands for Education Development Using Computer Assisted Teaching and is a project aimed at providing IT resources to PenReach partner currently 200 schools with approximately 800 educators and 150 000 pupils.

In order to accomplish this, a network first had to be installed at Penryn, with educators from the participating schools linking into this hub.

3Com SA provided Penryn with the infrastructure - hardware, software and networking -- needed to create its IT resource base. The Penryn system includes a network backbone supported by 3Com switches and hubs providing access to 100 points. Fiber-optic switches link the five fiber-optic elements that connect the Penryn LAN. 3Com will be providing ongoing advice regarding further development of the project.

Greg Theron, Headmaster of Penryn College says: "3Com's commitment to the EDUCATE project has allowed IT to become a reality in the local community."

Community projects of this kind are not only important in developing the disadvantaged, they make business sense as well. Just as Apple created a market - a market that helped it survive really tough times -- by giving Macs to schools, 3Com is helping create a future market for itself by helping Penryn set up its technology hub. By simply making its products familiar to future knowledge workers, it is creating a bias in its favour.



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