Internet Access / Education

Bandwidth to Meet Gen Z Consumption Habits

Two teenagers sitting with headphones on looking at a tablet and laptop
Bandwidth to Meet Gen Z Consumption Habits in Rural Connecticut
It’s widely known that Gen Z students like their broadband...a lot. Over 50% of Gen Z students connect to the internet more than 10 hours each day[i]. In fact, 71% of their typical entertainment consumption is streaming, and 1/3 is viewed from a mobile device[ii]. Given their fondness for livestreaming events plus their need for Zoom and Teams collaboration, Gen Z students consume vast amounts of bandwidth, even when they are attending a prestigious private school in rural Connecticut. When Salisbury School, a private boarding school founded in 1901, was looking for a network to keep pace with the consumption habits of its almost 400 live-in students and faculty members, they turned to Frontier to meet the challenge. Part of that challenge was future-proofing their network infrastructure to support ever-growing bandwidth, security and reliability needs.

Challenge: Supporting an “Always-On” Generation with “Always-On” Connectivity
Situated in an idyllic (but isolated) stretch of western Connecticut, the Salisbury School was experiencing bandwidth issues with their existing internet connectivity. When hybrid learning struck and Zoom meetings became a standard element of the Salisbury experience, existing bandwidth strained to keep up with these new burdens atop video streaming services that run non-stop on the weekends, plus the cloud-first databases that powered Salisbury’s classrooms and curricula. It was clear that internet capacity and reliability would be an increasingly important element of supporting the student and faculty community.

Salisbury had been leveraging internet service procured under programs incentivizing “cheap” broadband. They thought they had enough capacity but were realizing not all services or providers are created equal. Between customer service issues, outages and the bandwidth shortage, Salisbury recognized they needed to entertain alternatives.

To meet the surging bandwidth usage, Salisbury School set out to find a network provider able to support capacity needs with performance at a price that fit the school’s budget. Fortunately, Salisbury was able to tap a familiar partner the school had worked with in the past, Frontier Communications.

The Solution: Provisioning Higher Bandwidth and Greater Redundancy
Frontier already had fiber network running close to Salisbury School. We were able to provision the capacity via dedicated internet access and achieve the performance requirements for Salisbury. But what sealed the deal, according to Director of IT, Peter Raifstanger, was the level of professionalism, service, and insight the Frontier team brought when conducting their site-walk and consultation.

With respect to the technology solution, Frontier installed an additional 1Gbps dedicated internet connection to Salisbury School’s existing capacity. Having the extra circuit not only provided increased bandwidth but also added much-needed redundancy in case of an outage. Moreover, Frontier installed dual-power supplies via best-in-class gear to shore up reliability beyond the fiber itself. In a matter of weeks, Frontier was able to supply Salisbury School with enough bandwidth and redundancy to meet the high usage rates of their always-on student body. The improved network solution has supported Salisbury’s community for several years with no interruption.

Frontier has proven to be an invaluable connectivity partner to the Salisbury School. Since installing the service almost a year ago, it’s been reliable and of high quality.

Peter Raifstanger, director of IT, SALISBURY SCHOOL

The Result: A Rural Boarding School Running at High-Speed Capacity
Salisbury School now has more than enough reliable, dedicated broadband capacity to meet the elevated expectations of its Gen Z students – and at a price that doesn’t break the bank. No longer having to worry about internet downtime, the Salisbury School can now focus on providing the best experience and education to students that have entrusted their future success to the Hilltop.