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University to Host Fourth Technology Summit this week

Image courtesy of the University of Mississippi

Information provided by the University of Mississippi

An assembly of top technology, business and industry leaders will gather in Oxford next week to discuss expansion of rural broadband, workforce diversity and technology applications at the fourth annual University of Mississippi Technology Summit.

The summit will feature remarks by Ajit Pai, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, as the guest government speaker, and David L. Cohen, senior executive vice president and chief diversity officer for Comcast Corp., as the keynote speaker. U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, will be guest of honor.

The event is set for 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Wednesday (Aug. 28) in the Gertrude C. Ford Center for the Performing Arts. Registration opens at 8 a.m., followed by a welcome at 8:30 a.m. by Interim Chancellor Larry Sparks.

Leaders from government, business, higher education and other fields will explore technology- and telecommunications-related issues in industry and education through panel discussions and remarks throughout the day.

“The fourth annual Tech Summit promises to be both interesting and informative as we welcome national industry and government leaders to our campus,” Sparks said. “This event offers an important forum for leaders in our state to engage directly with policymakers and business executives who are deciding how technology will continue to shape our economy and many aspects of our lives.”

Wicker, who has participated in all the previous summits at the university, noted that technology is critical for boosting Mississippi’s economy.

“The Tech Summit is a unique event that allows the University of Mississippi to bring together leading innovators in the tech and telecommunications sector,” he said. “I am thrilled to have Chairman Pai and David Cohen join the conversation this year, and I look forward to welcoming all of the summit participants to Mississippi this summer.”

Besides the keynote speakers, a variety of industry leaders will participate in discussions on key matters in the technology, business and education sectors throughout the day.

At 8:50 a.m., a panel discussion on broadband and fiber optic connectivity will include representatives from C Spire, Verizon, The Internet & Television Association and AT&T.

At 10 a.m., leaders from Facebook, Google Wireless, LinkedIn, Samsung and Cook Infrastructure Consulting will discuss how the products and services created by the tech industry can continue benefiting society.

At 11:10 a.m., the intersection of technology and workforce development will be the topic of conversation with representatives from the Base Camp Coding Academy, Chevron, Relativity Space, the State Workforce Investment Board and 2nd Chance MS participating.

Ole Miss students will present three-minute talks to spotlight research and projects ongoing across campus

Tech pioneer and Mississippian Jim Barksdale closes out the event with a “fireside chat” at 12:15 p.m.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information and to pre-register, visit

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