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September 10, 2004

National Technical Institute for the Deaf Selects Sprint as Exclusive Video Relay Provider

From: NTID - Sept 10, 2004

Media Contact:
Stephanie Taliaferro, Sprint, 913-794-3658

Karen Black, NTID, 585-475-6840 (v/tty)


National Technical Institute for the Deaf Selects Sprint as Exclusive Video Relay Provider
Sprint sponsorship agreement includes video, online relay services, plus telecommunication equipment for the college

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – Sept. 10, 2004 –Sprint (NYSE: FON) today announced an exclusive sponsorship agreement with the National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID), a college of Rochester Institute of Technology, to provide enhanced Video Relay Services (VRS) and equipment to students, faculty, staff and alumni of NTID free of charge. NTID is the world's first and largest technological college for students who are deaf or hard of hearing.

"The Sprint sponsorship will give NTID students, faculty and staff flexible communication options, along with the equipment to make the most of them," said Dr. T. Alan Hurwitz, vice president, Rochester Institute of Technology and CEO/Dean of NTID . "Sprint has proven itself to be a pioneer in the field of relay services of all kinds through its services to state and government agencies. We are pleased to offer those innovative services to our institute."

Sprint video relay services, powered by CSD, will allow NTID students and faculty to communicate naturally "over the phone" using American Sign Language and a video interpreter. Video Relay Services are accessed by using a high-speed internet connection (cable, DSL, T-1, etc.), a computer and webcam or a television and a videophone device. Sprint and CSD (Communication Services for the Deaf) launched the first nationwide Video Relay Service in May 2002.

For VRS users accessing service via a television and videophone, Sprint established for direct access to a video interpreter. A Web page interface was also developed to provide video relay services through a school-specific Web site at The Web site will also allow NTID students, faculty, staff and alumni to access Sprint Relay Online, which allows users to make calls from any Web-enabled Internet device or PC without having to use a TTY device.

"Sprint is excited to provide these services and equipment to foster convenient, dependable communications among the students, alumni and employees of NTID," said Mike Ligas, region vice president, Sprint Relay. "Sprint has a strong commitment with 14 years of experience in providing communication options across the country for citizens who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability."

Sprint also will provide the school with broadband videophones, televisions and TV cards for video relay service use in dorm rooms, and routers and phone flashers, along with the necessary cables and connections, for each of the videophones and televisions.

Sprint provides FCC compliant relay services for the federal government, 31 states, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and New Zealand. Sprint Relay began in 1990 and provides state-of-the-art technology, a full range of features and highly trained, professional staff to ensure users are able to communicate easily and effectively every time they place a relay call. Relay service is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, with no restrictions on the number of calls placed or call length. Information about Sprint Relay services is available at

Sprint Government Systems Division ( is based in Herndon, Va., and offers the full range of Sprint product and service offerings for federal and state government customers.

About Sprint
Sprint is a global integrated communications provider serving more than 26 million customers in over 100 countries.  With more than $26 billion in annual revenues in 2003, Sprint is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying state-of-the-art network technologies, including the United States' first nationwide all-digital, fiber-optic network and an award-winning Tier 1 Internet backbone.  Sprint provides local communications services in 39 states and the District of Columbia and operates the largest 100-percent digital, nationwide PCS wireless network in the United States. For more information, visit

About National Technical Institute for the Deaf
NTID is the first and largest technological college in the world for deaf and hard-of-hearing students. One of eight colleges of the Rochester Institute of Technology, NTID offers educational programs and access and support services to its 1,100 students from around the world who study, live and socialize with 14,200 hearing students on RIT's Rochester, N.Y., campus. For more information, visit