Rural Renaissance | OEC News

The power of connection

Through the 1930s, the unavailability of electricity in rural areas kept their economies entirely and exclusively dependent on agriculture.

Things changed in 1937 thanks to the hard work and determination of a group of farmers from Cleveland and McClain Counties. Since then, Oklahoma Electric Cooperative has been at the forefront of improving members’ quality of life through the safe delivery of highly reliable electricity.

Long before OEC Fiber put its first fiber cable in the ground, in 2017, OEC sent a survey to its members asking them what they could do better. What did the area need that they could provide? The overwhelming response was the internet, and it became clear that high-speed internet was akin to electricity in the 20th century. Many of our electric members did not have access to affordable or reliable internet services, or access to the internet at all. From that, OEC Fiber was born and founded on the same principles that brought us OEC all those years ago.

Together, we are reinvesting in Oklahoma by bringing reliable electric and high-speed fiber services to our community’s homes, businesses and schools. We understand that connected communities create jobs, attract new employers and directly jump-start local economies. We are proud to provide a couple of the key ingredients needed to ensure a healthy 21st-century economy — reliable electricity and high-speed internet access.

OEC Fiber’s fiber network invests in our community’s future and the next generation in four fundamental ways.

1. Fiber Helps You Work and Live Where You Love

Without high-speed internet, small-town America would be left in the dust. Small businesses and farms could not compete with their industrial counterparts. Families would miss out on essential benefits, like streaming entertainment or video calls with loved ones.

The expansion of fiber internet infrastructure is altering the landscape, putting small-town America on a level playing field with more densely populated regions. The superior quality of fiber internet also allows smaller communities to attract new businesses and investments, bringing in well-educated and highly skilled younger people who previously departed for larger cities.

This rural migration makes it far less likely that families will have to choose between where they want to live or taking a great job opportunity. Fiber internet technology doesn’t just help you stay connected to other people—it’s also helping you stay in your community and keep the ones you love closer.

2. Remote Work and Relocation Fuels Job and Economic Growth

Online and internet-based jobs are no longer “the careers of the future.” They are the jobs of the present.

According to Forbes, 12.7% of full-time work is done from home, and 28.2% of jobs have a hybrid approach. These numbers will only grow. Fiber internet is helping to fuel the remote working trend and helping attract new workers to our community.

Relocation, or “recruiting”, remote workers away from major cities and to smaller and often more scenic, relaxed regions, is another significant trend in American life and relocation, made possible by fiber internet, can be an engine to power sustainable economic growth to help our community thrive.

Today’s workforce depends on fast, reliable internet. Fiber internet draws talent to our small communities to work from home or even in the local coffee shop. It helps keep our families together and attracts new families into our community. As a result, the local economy is boosted, from restaurants and shops to other small businesses and service providers.

3. Improved Schools and Educational Benefits

Today’s schools go well beyond chalkboards and desks. Resource-rich curriculums bring a swath of learning materials from all over the world into the classroom via the internet.

Fiber’s reliable internet means teachers can easily access and share resources with their students, greatly enriching the learning environment and improving educational outcomes for our children. By bringing these critical education materials and tools to our schools, fiber internet makes perhaps its most crucial—and longest-lasting—investment in our community.

4. Fiber Enhances Farms and Keeps Agri-Businesses Competitive

Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural-related businesses also benefit from access to fiber internet. From up-to-the-minute weather information to soil and moisture data and access to global markets, fiber helps small farms and rural communities thrive.

Fiber improves connections to governmental and regulatory agencies, speeding up permitting, insurance claims and more. Modern tech powered by fiber can vastly improve efficiencies for livestock and agricultural farms—bringing more profit and stability to farming families. Plus, easier access to online knowledge and resources ensures our local farmers don’t fall behind competitors in other areas.

These are just a few ways OEC Fiber and its fiber network invest in our community and the next generation. Whether helping to grow our economy, young minds or agricultural products, OEC Fiber’s high-speed, reliable fiber internet is built to sustain them all for years to come.

Here at OEC and OEC Fiber, we are managed and operated by employees who embody local and reliable service to the communities we both live and work in. Our electric and fiber services’ reliability, along with our unmatched member service and subscriber support, will be unlike anything you’ve seen or experienced before. Call us today to sign up for OEC Fiber at (405) 217-6868.

Elevate Your Connectivity!

Explore how high-speed fiber internet can transform your daily life with OEC Fiber!
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