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Enabling Kenyan and US Connections Across the Human Network with TelePresence

The Deaf Aid Academy in Kenya helps demonstrate how public-private partnerships can empower the underserved.

I wrote a blog post in January on Increasing Investment in ICT Capacity Building to Empower Persons with Hearing Impairment.  And now, I want to share with you what happened since then and the power of the Internet to connect people and drive change in the world.

The Power of Blogging

A few months later, I received an email from Len Mudrock, a Cisco software engineer in North Carolina who expressed an interest to connect with the students in Kenya and share with them his experience:

I read this article. It’s very interesting.  I am deaf at Cisco in Research Triangle Park, NC as a software engineer.  I would love to learn about this.   I went to the deaf conference in Germany and met a few Eastern European deaf people. They couldn’t believe that I am an engineer. I am thinking about being involving this if I could help deaf people in other countries in the future like a volunteer hours or a week.

In the meantime, I have been working with the Cisco Kenya team and had one of the first TelePresence meetings using our new TP in Nairobi, which was launched recently.  What ensued is what I like to call, “connecting the dots.”  I was able to connect Hital Muraj, our Cisco Networking Academy leader in East Africa, Len Mudrock and Marilyn Carter, who leads the Cisco Disability Awareness Network’s (CDAN).  We decided to invite 15 hearing impaired students and instructires to the session, with Len in RTP, and have the session videotaped.  The goal was to share how technology has changed his work experience as a hearing-impaired software engineer.

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Cisco Egypt: The Team Driving Innovation

Olaf Krahmer, President and General Manager of Cisco Egypt, and Elisabeth De Dobbeleer, Director, Operations, recently invited me to Egypt.  I arrived at the Cairo office on Sunday and joined a vibrant team discussion led by Olaf on our fiscal year planning. I felt very welcomed by the team and it was a great opportunity to learn about Egypt and see our people in action.

What’s on People’s Minds?

I decided to capture some of the conversations I had using my new Flip video.  As you will see, I am still a novice and I will hopefully improve with practice.  While I met many exceptional employees, I captured three and want to share with you their perspectives on this video:

  • Ramy Abdallah joined Cisco three months ago as a Client Executive.  He brings an incredible background to Cisco customers and partners.  He taught me that as part of the Egyptian culture, you tend to address issues directly.
  • Ayman Elgohary has been with Cisco for 8 years and has been the Regional Commercial Sales Manager for the past six years.  We shared a passion for Canada and I learned that he wrote a number of papers about Cisco as a student.  It was interesting to talk to him about the differences and similarities from what he expected and what he has experienced.
  • Dina Hassan inspired me.  She is our Finance Manager and had the opportunity to be in a rotation program in Paris.  As you will see, she is very passionate about her role at Cisco and the opportunities in Egypt

 

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Latin America reconsiders its infrastructure needs

Last week the World Economic Forum on Latin America was held in the beautiful city of Cartagena de Indias, in the transformed Colombia.  It closed with a call for the region not to be complacent and redouble efforts to pursue economic and social reforms and at the same time deepen regional integration.

Despite all the optimism about the bright future of the region and the way Latin America has successfully weathered the crisis, most of the leaders called out for action and concrete decisions to secure the way forward for millions of Latin Americans.

Technology and the role of ICT for the future of the region was a key topic discussed and debated in most of the public and private sessions around infrastructure, education, health care and even political stability.

This year the theme of the summit was “New Partnership for a Sustainable Recovery”. The meeting brought together over 500 leaders from more than 42 countries, representing business, government, academia, civil society and media.

Jaime Valles, Cisco vice president for Latin America, gives his perspectives on the major themes raised at WEF in Cartagena (English)

http://www.youtube.com/user/CSCOPR?feature=mhw5#p/u/2/80aRuoOgVPY

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Cisco Networkers Bahrain 2010 … What A Great Show

Cisco Networkers Bahrain was a fascinating event that left its attendees overwhelmed with the experience. Almost everyone we’ve spoken to was taken away with the many successful aspects of the event that took place from 28 to 31 of March. Attendees, however, were very pleased with one particular takeaway – the wealth of knowledge and that they came out with toward the end.

Whether it was through meeting Cisco executives, engineers or partners, Cisco Networkers Bahrain was an ideas and solutions oasis; where great mind collaborated and shared knowledge, expertise and best practices. Not forgetting to mention, they also had plenty of fun.

So, if you haven’t made it to Networkers this year, click on the “READ MORE” link below for a few snap shots of some of what you have missed. 

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Better City, Better Life: Cisco Showcases Smart+Connected Communities at World Expo 2010 in Shanghai

 

Besides the FIFA World Cup in June, there’s another global event taking place which is expected to attact the attention of millions. That event is World Expo 2010 in the city of Shanghai in China.

Running from May 1, to October 31, 2010, 70 million people are expected to attend the six month long fair.

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