The cadets at Marion Military Institute (MMI) are basking in the successful installation of a cutting-edge residential network (ResNet)—a new system that has significantly enhanced connectivity, bolstered hybrid and blended learning, and made barracks Wi-Fi more reliable. Through a partnership with higher education’s largest managed technology services leader Apogee, more than 400 MMI students will now have an exceptional wireless experience — one that lives up to the school’s reputation as one of the best military colleges in the nation.
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Founded in 1842, MMI is the oldest military junior college in the country, and one of only four military junior colleges in the United States. With its unique “whole-person education” approach, cadets are prepared for success in any future educational institution they go on to attend as well as for success in life.
“With the ratio of devices per student increasing, high demand for streaming services, and new wireless standards available, it was imperative that we take action to meet our cadets’ expectations of a good wireless experience,” said AJ Crittenden, MMI IT Director.
Adding to the urgency was MMI’s move to hybrid and blended learning during the pandemic. Even though the semester was already in full swing with classes and student activities, Apogee was able to install MMI’s new wireless infrastructure in the school’s five barracks in under six weeks. Cadets now have reliable, high-speed internet for online academics, and to enjoy video calls with family and friends, gaming, streaming, and their favorite apps. They also have 24/7/365 access to Apogee support via phone, chat, text, and email.
Out with the Old Infrastructure, in with New High-Speed Wi-Fi
When MMI upgraded its wireless network in 2014, it was the first community college in Alabama to deploy 802.11ac Wi-Fi. At that time, the upgrade drastically increased MMI’s ability to support the proliferation of BYOD and improved the overall wireless experience of the students. Seven years later, evolving needs in academic instruction, cadet quality of life, and an aging infrastructure caused Wi-Fi to be ineffective, resulting in speed and connectivity issues in the barracks. The search for a technology partner to modernize the network led MMI to Apogee, because of the company’s experience and track record delivering high-speed ResNet to many schools across Alabama. “We had a very positive perception of Apogee based on our research and what we discovered about the company from other colleges within the state,” said Crittenden.
The new MMI wireless network will not only help ensure online course success but will also positively impact cadets’ residential and campus life experience, as the high-speed, high-density Wi-Fi provides each student with 100Mbps bandwidth, and the ability to connect up to seven devices. Crittenden added, “I think our technology investment shows our current and future cadets that we’re progressive and responsive to student needs. With our Apogee partnership guaranteeing reliable Wi-Fi, future-proof equipment refreshes, and technical support, we can now focus on more strategic planning and future innovations in other areas.”
According to Matt Loecke, Executive Vice President of Sales at Apogee: “As the only higher ed-focused technology managed services provider in the country, we fully understand the accelerating pressures for schools to harness technology to transform the education experience and foster student vitality. As one of the most respected military institutions in the nation, we are honored to add Marion Military Institute to our partnerships in Alabama and across the nation.”
Apogee is the only managed services provider with a sole focus on higher education. Fueled by a community of more than 1,000,000 students and administrators nationwide, Apogee’s 20 years of experience living and breathing higher education provides a unique understanding of the connection between technology and student vitality. The company is committed to redefining the student campus life experience. Visit Apogee at apogee.us.
About Marion Military Institute
Marion Military Institute (MMI), located in Marion Alabama, is the nation’s oldest Military Junior College, of which only four remain, and is a member of the Alabama Community College System. Originating in 1842, MMI has achieved a national reputation for developing young men and women into successful and prominent leaders in the military, in business and in government. MMI’s mission is to educate and develop cadets as future leaders through an immersive experiential military environment which integrates intellectual, leadership, character, and physical development in order to prepare them for success at four-year colleges, U.S. service academies, and in military or civilian careers. Visit MMI at marionmilitary.edu.