Please see below for upcoming CEN events as we continue to provide a space for member-led discussions on the topics that matter most to our community right now.
Please click here to view upcoming events in the community
Annual Member Conference - 2023 CEN Member Conference
May 11, 2023
CEN is happy to announce that our 10th Annual Member Conference will be hosted in-person on Thursday, May 11, 2023 at the Connecticut Convention Center. The CEN Member Conference offers a unique and exciting opportunity to bond and collaborate with over 600 of your colleagues and industry experts in a one-day event crafted specifically for members by members. Featuring more training, collaboration, education, and networking than ever before, join us as we celebrate bringing our community together!
Cyber Nutmeg 2023
October 20, 2023
Cyber Nutmeg 2023 is a one-day event designed to heighten your awareness on cybersecurity threats and defenses you can deploy to protect your organization.
This event is intended for state, municipal, and educational leaders, including but not limited to: first selectmen, mayors, town managers, superintendents, and the IT and cybersecurity professionals who support them. Given the current threats posed by various actors across the cyber domain, it is more imperative than ever that we ensure our vigilance and commitment to improving our cyber security posture across the state. The Cyber Nutmeg event is an opportunity to share our collective challenges, discuss innovative solutions, and work toward our common goal: securing our state’s networks and protecting our data.
Cyber Nutmeg consists of three main components: Cyber Security Awareness Training, a current executive Threat Briefing from the FBI & Homeland Security, and a National Guard led Tabletop exercise where blended groups can work collaboratively to focus on today’s most prevalent threat: ransomware. It is encouraged you share openly and offer your perspective to the group. This is a great opportunity for chief executives and technology professionals to network with colleagues, expand your professional network, and get plugged into the cybersecurity community!
Data Member Training Series
Join us and our data security experts for informative and interactive sessions that will provide IT, administrative, and executive staff vital updates on data privacy and retention responsibilities, cybersecurity threats and safeguards, and best practices in all areas.
Member Training Webinar: Data Retention
Thursday November 17, 1 PM - 2:30 PM
Presenters: Elise Marzik, LeAnn Power, Michelle Laubin, Bryan LeClerc
This webinar will provide an overview of data retention rules and best practices for schools and municipalities, with your questions answered by some of the state’s leading experts. LeAnn Burbank and Elise Marzik of the State Library will provide an overview of the state records retention schedules and record management policies. In addition, Michelle Laubin of the Berchem Moses law firm will speak to best practices for translating records retention schedules into preparing for FOI requests, litigation holds, and other potential risks to schools. Her colleague, Bryan LeClerc, will follow by addressing municipal records retention.
Member Training Webinar: Data Breach
Wednesday October 26, 2 PM - 3:30 PM
Presenter: David Sun
Data Breaches and Ransomware: How You and Your Organization Can Sleep a Little Better at Night
Data breaches and ransomware continue to make the headlines, and for good reason; the hackers continue to get bolder every day in their attacks. Organizations and individuals are targets and the ramifications can be significant. This presentation will review the latest trends in cybersecurity and what they mean to your organization and its people. Attendees will learn the latest business processes, management techniques to put their organization on better footing against the current cyber threat landscape.
Member Training Webinar: Data Privacy
Tuesday September 27, 1 PM - 2:30 PM
Presenters: Gwen Zittoun
Member Training Webinar: Securly's AI - The Balance Between Responsible and Effective
Wednesday July 27, 1 PM - 2 PM
Presenters: Marissa Angel, Chris Macca
With growing 1:1 initiatives in K-12 in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the increase in digital learning environments, schools are faced with new risks which need to be managed. Enter AI -- a technology that when used properly, can have an enormous impact on overall student wellness and beyond. Participants will leave the presentation with information that can spark productive conversations about how AI can be used positively and productively in their district. Better yet, Securly will be discussing new tools and features that were recently unveiled and as a result, will soon be added to the list of options that CEN members can procure via members-only pricing.
Annual Member Conference - 2022 CEN Member Conference
May 5, 2022
CEN is happy to announce that our 9th Annual Member Conference will be hosted in-person on Thursday, May 5, 2022 at the Connecticut Convention Center. The CEN Member Conference offers a unique and exciting opportunity to bond and collaborate with over 550 of your colleagues and industry experts in a one-day event crafted specifically for members by members. Featuring more training, collaboration, education, and networking than ever before, join us as we celebrate bringing our community together again in-person!
Webinar - Fy2022: An E-Rate Primer for Schools and Libraries
Presenters: Bob Richter, Paul Tarsa
Date: December 15, 2021
Time: 1 PM - 2 PM
This one-hour presentation (45 minutes of information, 15 minutes of Q&A) will cover the basics of the E-Rate Program for Funding Year 2022, including an overview of the Forms 470 and 471, calculating discounts, calculating budgets, eligible products, program touch points, and the rules that both service providers and applicants must follow. We’ll highlight any changes from FY 2021 (although we don’t expect many.)
CEN Virtual Member Town Hall
Dates Offered: September 30, 2021, October 5, 2021, October 14, 2021
Time: 10 AM - 12 PM
Join us for a town hall style meeting on Microsoft Teams! We are excited to meet virtually with our members from across the state to share important and timely CEN updates, to hear your feedback, and to learn more about how we can work and grow together.
The meeting agenda will include:
- CEN Service Dashboard
- UC/VOIP RFP
- Security Services RFP
- NextGen CEN Infrastructure Update
- Member Conference
- Quarterly Training Schedule
Quarterly Training - AI and Proctoring & Alternative Assessments
Speakers: Kaitlin Walsh, Daniel Facchinetti, Barbara Johnson, Jenn Kozniewski
Moderator: Sam Lee
Panelist: Doug Casey
Date: September 23, 2021
Time: 1 pm
ERN - All Hands Meeting
Dates: July 13-15, 2021
Annual Member Conference - 2021 CEN Member Conference
Date: May 11-13, 2021
CEN would like to thank everyone who attended and participated in the 2021 Virtual Member Conference! CEN and its Member Engagement Advisory Council hosted our Annual Member Conference virtually May 11-13, 2021, in place of the traditional in-person event.
The virtual format featured the same wide-ranging display of emerging technologies, best practices, member – vendor partnerships, and innovative solutions to the challenges faced by the CEN membership. Recordings of all sessions will remain active until February 24, 2022 for all registered participants to access. Visit the link here to log in and watch the sessions that you missed during the event. CEN Virtual Member Conference
Annual Member Conference - 2020 CEN Member Conference CANCELED
Date: October 6-7, 2020
We have made the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 Annual Member Conference scheduled in Hartford on October 6-7.
In light of the continuing challenges and uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, the unpredictability of travel restrictions, budgetary challenges, and the ongoing health and safety concerns of our membership, the EDAC in conjunction with CEN leadership felt holding the event as scheduled is unrealistic and impractical. All conference registrants will receive a full refund.
Goodness Gracious, Great Walls of Fire: CEN's Border Firewall for Advanced Protection
Presenters: Stephen Shaw, Rick Cheung
Date: November 13, 2020
Time: 1pm - 2pm
CEN’s Firewall Service provides increased protection with enterprise grade, high availability Fortinet technology and a level of service choice, Virtual (co-managed) or Managed, to fit the needs of each subscribing member. Both services offer the same technology and security features and benefits. This session will provide members with a better understanding of how this firewall will work in their architecture, and how CEN's Managed Security Services Provider (MSSP), Foresite, can help streamline the migration from an on-premises firewall to the hosted model. Additionally, Foresite provides the expertise to help members build a more rigorous and thorough base of rules and policies to improve their security profile, and they will provide the ongoing support to effectively protect members from the barrage of threats.
No-Cost Cybersecurity Tools and Resources with the MS-ISAC
Presenters: Brian Calkin, Kyle Bryans
Date: October 21, 2020
Time: 1pm - 2pm
In this session, we will seek to provide an introduction to the free services and resources offered by the MS-ISAC to assist the public sector, including a deeper dive into our new no-cost MDBR solution. In a connected world, cybersecurity is the responsibility not only of our IT leaders and specialists, but everyone within an organization. The MS-ISAC is the focal point for cyber threat prevention, protection, response and recovery for the nation's state, local, tribal and territorial (SLTT) governments. Collaboration and information sharing among members, private sector partners and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security are the keys to success.
Using Personas for Accessible Design
Presenter: Kathryn Weber-Hottleman
Date: September 30, 2020
Time: 1pm - 2pm
There are a few steps that developers and designers can take to incorporate accessibility from the beginning of a solution’s design. One way of doing this is to create additional personas that are users with disabilities. Having a primary persona with a disability means that disability will never be far from developers’ and designers’ minds. Another way to keep accessibility present is to include it in scenario design.
Effective Vulnerability Management
Presenter: Kevin Hayes
Date: August 13, 2020
Time: 1:30pm - 3pm
Vulnerability scanning is a keystone necessary to stabilize your organizations’ security posture. This webinar is divided into equal portions learning, demonstration and FAQ session to clearly outline and highlight the benefits most applicable to your specific organization. In this webinar we will cover: An overview of risk management concepts; The current threat landscape; A live demo showcasing vulnerability exploitation; Key vulnerability scanning and management concepts; Practical examples of vulnerability scanning; Open Q & A Session
Data Privacy and Contact Tracing
Moderator: Karen Warren
Presenters: Doug Casey, Sebastian Zimmeck, Mike Newcomb, Chris Sette
Click here for presenter bios.
Date: July 22, 2020
Time: 1pm - 2:30pm
The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc in many areas. Education institutions are particularly hit hard as there will be a need to re-open campuses safely. It will be extremely important to bring back students and ensure safety at the same time. Hesitation is likely, as the classroom is not an easy place to practice social distancing. In addition to promoting personal hygiene, regulations will likely include the ability to track potential outbreaks early and isolate affected students and staff. “Contact tracing” is a key method that will help to mitigate a major outbreak on campus. Contact tracing is a process that is activated when you have a confirmed case of COVID. This process involves tracking down everyone who has had close contact (within six feet over for more than a couple of minutes). Join representatives from Wesleyan University, Meriden Public Schools, The State of Connecticut, and Juniper Networks as they discuss the technologies emerging in the space, the challenges of implementation and the implication of using them.
Network Recommendations in the Age of COVID-19
Thursday July 16, 1pm - 2:30pm
Join Craig Holland, Director of IT for Newington Public Schools, and Ryan Kocsondy, Director of CEN, for a session dedicated to “Network Considerations in the age of COVID-19”. This discussion will review important considerations for IT Professionals, Institutional Leaders, and Policy makers to be aware of in preparation for Fall 2020 activities and beyond. Topics include: Broadband Speed Guide, Video Requirements by platform, Network Load Calculations, COVID Realizations on Network Performance, General Guidance for hybrid environments, and Public Policy Recommendations.
Keeping Students Safe at Home - Featuring iboss
Thursday June 25, 1pm - 2:30pm
Protecting students while on-line learning at home and ensuring CIPA compliance are primary and urgent requirements for CEN’s K-12 IT community. CEN has partnered with iboss to provide members solutions at no additional cost. This session will provide information on the features and capabilities of the iboss cloud product, how and why your member colleagues migrated to the cloud from hosted or on-prem school appliance solutions, and it will offer a forum for questions, answers, and sharing.
Keeping Students Safe at Home - Featuring Securly
Wednesday June 17, 2pm - 3:30pm
Protecting students while on-line learning at home and ensuring CIPA compliance are primary and urgent requirements for CEN’s K-12 IT community. CEN has partnered with Securly to provide members solutions at discounted pricing. This session will provide information on the portfolio of Securly student safety products and how they protect students at school, at home, and elsewhere. The session will include first hand feedback from your member colleagues and a forum for questions, answers, and sharing.
CEN Town Hall Meeting
Join us for a CEN Town Hall meeting on May 15 or 22! We are excited to meet virtually with our members from across the state to share important and timely CEN updates, to hear your feedback, and to learn more about how we can work and grow together.
The meeting agenda will include:
- Cloud Services Updates
- Network Enhancements
- Support for 1:1 Initiatives
- Filtering & Student Safety
- Advisory Councils Update
- Member Conference Plans
- Open Forum
We hope to see you there! Please register here to select your preferred date.
Webinar - Important and Time Sensitive E-Rate News - Category 2 Enhancements
Friday, 1/31, 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Category 2 E-Rate rules and budgets have been recently changed providing increased benefits to K-12 districts/schools and libraries. There are applicable changes to the current E-Rate Funding Year 2020 (July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021) and to future years. This webinar provided by CEN and E-Rate Provider Services included a description of those changes and an explanation of how your organization can benefit.
Topics covered included:
- Additional budget for Funding Year 2020
- Districtwide budget and rule changes for Funding Year 2021 and beyond
- Example budget calculations
- Eligible CEN services
Strategic Planning Workshops - CEN Town Hall Meetings
The CEN Team invited our members to join us for Town Hall style meetings. We met in-person with our members from across the state to share important CEN updates, to hear your feedback, and to learn more about how we can grow together. Last year, we had great success with similar meetings to collaborate on the development of CEN’s 5-Year Strategic Plan. At our upcoming Town Hall meetings, members heard more about the goals of that plan and what it means for you and your organization.
We offered meetings at these locations around the state:
CEN Forum - Protecting Our Communities from Ransomware Attacks
We were joined by CEN community members, security experts, and homeland security representatives for an important CEN Forum - Protecting Our Communities from Ransomware Attacks on November, 19 at Central Connecticut State University.
News stories are plentiful of cities and towns paying tens of thousands of dollars to ransomware hackers to get their data back, and this does not include the millions spent in cleanup and in rebuilding a network following an attack. Ransomware attacks are perhaps the greatest current threat to our members' networks, private data, operational continuity, and financial health.
Quarterly Training Sessions - Cyber Defense Clinic
Quarterly Training Session - Digital Accessibility Workshop
The third quarterly training was held on June 6, 2019. This presentation included an overview of global standards for digital accessibility, the broad and narrow applications of digital accessibility, technology used to address accessibility and accommodations, training and resources available for faculty, staff, and students, and guidance on how to draft a plan for universal institutional accessibility. The training took place at CCSU and was streamed to ECSU, SCSU, WCSU, and UCONN Stamford. Stay tuned for details on the next quarterly training.
Annual Member Conference - 2019 CEN Member Conference
The CEN member conference is a unique opportunity to join over 500 of your colleagues and industry experts in a one day event geared to educate, communicate and collaborate about common issues in cybersecurity, community best practices, education and innovation, and technology community awareness. Last year's conference featured a keynote by Dr Kate Darling of MIT, 28 parallel sessions to choose from, hot lunch and more! You can view a photo gallery from this event on our Conference page.
Quarterly Training Session - Broadband Tool Kit Workshop
The second quarterly training took place February 22, 2019. The "Toward Gigabit Libraries" project, funded by the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS), has created a "Broadband Toolkit" and customized "Broadband Improvement Plan" designed to help public and tribal librarians learn about their current broadband infrastructure and internal information technology (IT) environment. This interactive training took place in at the CT State Library Service Center in Middletown and was steamed live to libraries in Stratford, Old Saybrook, Mansfield, and Litchfield.
Strategic Planning Workshops - Fairfield County
The second CEN Strategic Planning Workshop took place on January 25, 2019 from 10:00am- 2:00pm in Newtown. Each workshop offered CEN members, staff, and other stake holders the opportunity to help analyze and create CEN's: Mission and Purpose, Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats, and Strategies for the Future.
Strategic Planning Workshops - Hartford County
The first CEN Strategic Planning Workshop took place January 22, 2019 from 10:00am- 2:00pm at CEN in Hartford. Each workshop offered CEN members, staff, and other stake holders the opportunity to help analyze and create CEN's: Mission and Purpose, Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats, and Strategies for the Future.
Quarterly Training Session - K-12 Student Data Privacy
The first training, K-12 Student Data Privacy session was held at Central Connecticut State University on November 20th and was streamed live to ESCU, SCSU, WCSU, CEN Hartford, and the Ferguson Library in Stamford to ensure convenience to CEN members from all over the state. 211 CEN members registered for the event, and approximately 190 participated.
Do you have ideas you would like to see for a professional development session? Let CEN know at firstname.lastname@example.org
CEN Event Calendar