Welcome back to the Spring semester. As we are only in early February, “Spring” semester seems to be a misnomer, but I am sure that warmer weather is not far away.
Winter break allowed CTS to accomplish quite a few items to prepare for the start of school. Here are a few highlights:
Park Hall was completed and opened for classes on January 27. Ten new Advanced Technology Classrooms and wireless access throughout the building were added, along with some technically advanced meeting and conference rooms.
Hewitt Union was updated with new technology in three classrooms and also had extensive wireless network access added. Faculty from C&I moved into the building in preparation for construction in Wilber tower. In total, 36 wireless access points were added to the classroom and office areas on the first and second floor.
Wireless upgrades were made to Johnson and Funnelle in known dead areas. Additionally, two wireless access points were added to Lake Effects Cafe in Penfield Library to handle the large amount of technology use in this area.
Winter breakout was a success with record attendance. Many of the participants participated virtually, with the campus’s Panopto lecture capture application, helping people who could not be on campus still reap the benefits of the presentations.
One other highlight was the announcement of the TIP grant awards at the December CTAB meeting. Four awards were made from ten applicants – the full story is available on the CTAB Tip Grant page. One of the awards was for all campus members – faculty, staff and students – to have access to Lynda.com. The grant application was the first ever to come from a faculty member from all four colleges and Penfield Library. Lynda.com will replace the campuses former app, Skillport. Lynda.com has tremendous potential for advancing the technical skills of everyone on campus. Over 500 people on campus had logged in to the system by early February. More information on Oswego State’s implimentation of Lynda.com is available at http://www.oswego.edu/lynda.
Lynda.com will be highlighted at the CTAB meeting on Thursday, February 13 in the Campus Center Room 114 at 8:00 am. Attendance is open to all campus members, so please feel free to join us.
Chief Technology Officer, Campus Technology Services
At the final Fall Faculty Assembly (FA) meeting in November, I had the privilege of updating FA on the activities of Campus Technology Services. My update tried to convey CTSs commitment to being an integral part of enabling student success. All of the actions and projects that we are engaged in are directly or indirectly related to reaching this goal. My presentation is available at
After the talk, in the Q&A portion, I was asked about the move to the “cloud” that Oswego, as well as most Universities and indeed most of the IT industry is making. When Technology people refer to the “cloud”, they are referring to services that are delivered by an off-campus vendor or partner. Examples of use of the cloud are Oswego’s move to Google Apps (referred to as LakerApps on campus) and working with companies like Starfish to implement an early alert system to assist students who are at risk of failing. Concerns on all campuses are of the effect that moving into the cloud has on the Privacy and Security of our data.
It is an important topic and I am happy that we have explored that issue over the last semester at a Campus Technology Advisory Board (CTAB) meeting in October and a Information Technology Committee (ITC) meeting in November. The strategy that we have utilized at Oswego to deal with the risks around moving to the cloud have centred on:
utilizing contracts with our vendors to ensure they are using safe and responsible security practices and meeting the terms of the agreement
responsibly using applications like GoogleApps – our contract specifies the services that we can use with Google under the contract (i.e. Mail, Calendar, Drive, Sites and Contracts) and which ones we can not (i.e. YouTube)
and developing partnerships with our vendors such as Starfish to enable they are utilizing our data appropriately to help us reach our goals of helping more students to graduate.
This is a particularly important conversation to have as we approach Data Privacy Day, January 28, 2013. Data Privacy and security is a shared responsibility of everyone on campus. Ways that you can ensure that you protect your data and privacy are:
Be suspicious of data phishing emails. Be assured CTS will not ask for your username and password through email, and reputable firms will not as well. There are some sophisticated phishing attacks out there, but if you are suspicious err on the side of security.
Keep your passwords safe and secure, do not give them out to anyone.
When you are working with confidential and private data, ensure that it is always kept in a safe place. In data terms, that means that it is on a secure system behind appropriate passwords, i.e., your smartphone should always have a password if you are accessing your mail on it.
Congratulations to Mr. Sadig Gulaghayev for being promoted to the position of Technical Support Professional (TSPs) Coordinator. Sadig has worked at Oswego State and has been a Technology Support Professional for 2.5 years, starting in June 2011. Among Sadig’s top achievements at Oswego is automating much of the OLS, EOP and CSTEP departments to a paperless operation. Sadig’s new responsibilities will include supervising the TSPs who are responsible for a variety of support areas including computer support in labs and advanced technology classrooms.
And finally thanks to Professor Kelly Roe’s Graphics Arts class for the work they did on imagining a CTS logo and creating a new Facebook personna for the CTS facebook page. Congratulations to Mark Hanna, Samantha McCarthy, Hannah Joy, Alaina Dethier, Elijah Vary and Kristy Benicase for having their work selected to be the CTS Facebook page banner. Go to our page at https://www.facebook.com/SUNYOswegoCTS and see which of the works you “Like”.
All the best in 2014.
Chief Technology Officer, Campus Technology Services