Johann Zimmer Global Education Marketing Lead Follow EDUCATION, GOVERNMENT, HEALTH The USDA Scholarship is seeking applicants to fund technology projects in rural communities

The rural areas of our country are often underserved and lack access to technologies that enable them to access important information and services. However, many organizations struggle to extend their reach and capacity to these rural parts of the country as they try to achieve their goals. With the help of a USDA grant program, organizations in the education, government and healthcare sectors can apply for funding to use Zoom solutions to support rural communities in need through the use of interactive technologies like Zoom. Through the use of interactive technologies like Zoom, this gap has been closed due to the effectiveness of the Zoom platform in bridging this gap.

The Rural Utilities Service Distance Learning and Telemedicine Grant (RUS-DLT) covers capital expenditures needed to enable live, interactive distance learning and telemedicine services for rural USDA areas — or communities with fewer than 20,000 residents. It is a unique program that covers the capital expenditures required to facilitate these services.

As a result, rural schools, higher education institutions, tribal organizations, community health centers, hospital systems, clinics, government agencies, and many other types of organizations can now take advantage of technology — primarily video conferencing and collaboration technology — as a means of promoting access to these vital services and opportunities needed for are essential to a person’s well-being. In addition, these grants will also help expand the reach and availability of resources from these organizations in urban and suburban areas for the benefit of rural communities. At Zoom, we hope educational institutions can apply for this grant and use Zoom solutions to advance the causes that will have the most positive impact on the future of our planet.

Continuing education for all age groups

The two campuses of Southeastern Community College, a public community college in Iowa, take the business of education very seriously. We are committed to lifelong learning and take pride in helping all students achieve their educational and career goals. Southeastern Community College, which has been part of the region since 1920, enjoyed the support of the RUS DLT grant 100 years later, allowing it to establish distance learning programs in four counties across the region. This allows students in both the K-12 dual enrollment and college enrollment programs to take Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) courses, as well as college-ready and professional development courses. In addition, students can pursue personal development, certification, and continuing education programs in these areas throughout their academic careers. The scholarship provided by RUS-DLT allows students to access health and drug prevention training along with the equipment provided by the scholarship.

Empower others to learn through technology

Although this grant is primarily intended to fund capital expenditures related to the purchase of technology, it is intended to fund programs and projects that provide access to technology through the use of technology. As an example of how RUS-DLT has been used, here are some of the most common reasons why it has been used.

higher education

  • Dual Matriculation – Using interactive video conferencing to deliver courses as part of your dual matriculation program can help you grow the program.

  • Campus-to-Campus – Satellite campuses are connected to improve course availability, bridge academic programs, or develop the workforce.

  • Community Education – provides adult learners with opportunities to access higher education through partnerships with anchor institutions such as libraries and community centers that are community anchor institutions.

  • Personnel Development – ​​In order to increase the employability of remote professionals, it is important to connect with them. For example, you can organize an RN-to-BSN program offered in rural hospitals for nurses, or offer graduate programs in rural high schools for teachers.

K-12 Elementary and Secondary Education

  • Dual Enrollment – ​​Courses offered in real-time and interactive mode by colleges and universities.

  • School-to-School Collaboration – Collaborate with other K-12 schools to share teachers and courses.

  • Professional Development – Pay for professional development remotely while reducing costs.

  • Vocational Training Programs – Providing access to vocational training and CTE programs that can be accessed remotely.

  • School-Based Telemedicine – offers students the opportunity to connect with professional healthcare providers via telemedicine.

  • Remote Specialists – such as speech therapists, special education, etc. can be enhanced by remote specialists.


  • Medical Centers for Rural Hospitals and Clinics – Provides primary care and specialty services for rural hospitals and clinics by connecting them with medical centers.

  • Clinic-to-clinic or hospital-to-hospital, healthcare facilities that are connected can share doctors, dentists, nurses, healthcare professionals, continuing medical education programs, wellness programs, and prevention strategies.

  • Mental Health and Substance Abuse Clinics – They provide psychological and/or substance abuse treatment, education, counseling and a wide range of other treatment services.

  • School-Based Health – Assisting in the delivery of health services in schools for students in grades K-12.

  • Continuing medical education – to reduce rural health workers’ travel time for continuing education courses, we need to network with providers of CMEs.

state and local government

  • Educational Programming – Identify and network with educational providers at higher education institutions or other institutions that provide instruction

  • clinical care – Providing specialized care, primary care or treatment of chronic conditions and diseases through telemedicine consultations for patients and their families

  • Mental Health Care – Ensure people have access to mental health care, counseling and therapy

  • addiction services – such as advice, education and therapy

  • Personnel/workforce development training – Ensure all employees have access to a variety of training and development programs.

How to Make the RUS-DLT Scholarship Work for You

There are so many opportunities that we hope you find a project or program that fits your needs. It’s time to look at how we can use the funds we’ve won to achieve our goals. This list is not exhaustive, nor does it mean that all items on this list can be automatically taken into account. Applicants must demonstrate the primary purpose of the equipment as technology capable of providing education or medical care to residents in rural areas.

The following budget items can be provisionally included in the budget:

  • Packs of three-year prepaid video licenses without subscriptions (cap ex, non-prepaid)

  • There are many different types of endpoints for video (cameras/audio bars) and video codecs.

  • A camera system, audio system, and controller are all required

  • A peripheral device that enables content sharing and viewing (e.g., an oscilloscope, monitor, display, etc.)

  • To support synchronous video streaming, you need the following network components

  • An access point or component that is wireless

  • A personal device (tablet, laptop, etc.)

  • There are a number of components that make up cybersecurity

  • Hardware replacement contracts with a term of three years

  • A training budget of up to 10% can be allocated for training

Make a difference today

Please do not hesitate to contact us at if you are interested in finding out how your organization could benefit from this program or to find out if your initiatives could qualify for this program.

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