Call it the marathon without a finish line: As new network demands such as mobile computing and rich media increase, campus IT strategists are trying to keep running ahead, to ensure that their networks can meet the need.
Professionals who have helped create inviting places for groups to study on campus have vivid memories of the uninviting study spaces of yesterday. “When we studied as a group, if we studied as a group, it was typically in the dining hall,” recalls Jeff Vredevoogd, director of Herman Miller Education.
Thomas Edison, America's most prolific inventor, once explained his passion for innovation by saying, "There's always a better way." That's the spirit, if not the directive, for the campus departments profiled in the first round of 2011 Models of Efficiency honorees. When it comes to finding ways to streamline business processes or save time and money, the stories you'll read on the following pages will, we hope, inspire you and your department to look for your own ways to better serve constituents.
As new technologies are developed, many tried-and-true staples of academia have fallen. So it is with the carousel slide projector.
Long a staple of art history classes, slide projectors are becoming obsolete, and while many professors and instructors have plenty of media, they don't have a way to replace the projector itself.
For the University of Denver's multimedia department this presented an opportunity not only to solve an immediate problem but to create something that would go beyond the traditional uses of media objects.
Smart, highly educated, experienced executives moving into a new role are expected to hit the ground running. Their calendars are already packed with appointments and tasks, and their bosses (e.g., the president, chancellor, provost, or board, depending on the person's role) have pressing goals that need to be achieved ASAP. After a promising start, the new leader's performance veers off track. If a course correction isn't made, it can lead to derailment. Why?
People rarely work in isolation. But it's not always easy to meet in person to work on a project. Connecting online can be done from almost anywhere. The collaboration possibilities run the gamut from passing a Word document back-and-forth via e-mail to holding a multiparty videoconference.
Read on to learn how a variety of online collaboration tools are helping college and university administrators execute projects more efficiently.
Over the past two years, Arizona State University has opened two new schools at its campuses in the Phoenix area. But these educational additions are not training future social workers, lawyers, or business executives. They'll be turning out qualified future college students, many of whom—ASU officials hope—will populate the state's universities years from now.
VUKUNET web platform by NEC Display Solutions of America can turn a digital signage display into a source for vendor advertising—and revenue for an institution—in public spaces with much foot traffic. Campus officials can register their institution's network and include demographics about the location and how much ad time is available, and then use the web platform for approving offers from agencies for ad placements. The web platform enables ad content to be uploaded and displayed as needed on the network.
At Abilene Christian University in West Texas, technology managers were struggling with an outdated email system. While providing basic service, it lacked advanced functionality and was time-consuming and expensive to maintain. in addition, the full-time email administrator’s position had recently become vacant.
Kevin Roberts, chief information officer at ACU, knew it was time for a change. “We were disenchanted with our current email system,” he says, adding that the system servers were outdated, expensive to maintain, and were running out of space.