My colleague and I were volun-told to go to the last and final round of USAC Fall Training in L.A. this past month. I was actually pretty surprised that I was being allowed to go to this training since this was my first time to return to “The Golden State” since the infamous USAC training of ’08.

In 2008 another colleague and I were asked to go to the USAC Fall Training in L.A. To soak up some of the local culture we decided to attend Game 5 of the NLCS Playoff game between the Dodgers and the Phillies. I unwisely deferred the seating selection and ticket purchasing to my colleague - that ended up being the first of many mistakes to come. Our tickets ended up at the very back of the pavilion section of the stadium, so by the time we bravely fought the traffic and crowds we pretty much were left to trying to find seats anywhere we could.

We had just settled into our seats, with our Dodger Dawgs (with spicy mustard) in hand when an unsuspecting spectator (say that real fast five times) showed up wearing a San Francisco Giants hat. Well, to his dismay, the stadium full of Dodgers fans really didn’t appreciate his choice of hats. His second mistake was having his hands full, which actually prevented him from having the ability to keep his hat on his head. As you can imagine, the scene that played out went downhill from there. Long story short, my colleague and I ended up having a great time, but forever being included in the annals of YouTube (we can be found in the background as an unruly fan is forcefully removed from the stadium by security).

Back to the training, the 2012 USAC Fall Training in L.A. was full of good information and great training. We were able to see the funnier side of some of the speakers while taking away great practical information. There was a great amount of attendee participation this time around. The biggest take away for me is how tight E-rate funding has become, and just how quickly a viable solution is needed so that Schools and Libraries can continue to provide students and patrons with affordable telecommunications and Internet Access.