Top Ten Education IT Systems Management Pain Points

Managing IT for a university, community college or K-12 school system doesn’t have to be difficult or require tons of overtime. Establishing the right IT systems management strategy can help you manage your IT assets more efficiently, helping you do your part to improve productivity and raise your reputation within the organization. Download this report to learn about the top 10 education IT pain points (and potential solutions to them).Download Whitepaper

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Watch: Students sell their faces to pay off debt

Calling all debt-ridden students: Would you consider turning your face into a billboard to help pay off your loans? Asks the Huffington Post. This is not a joke, but rather a business plan envisioned by two indebted students in the U.K., according to the radio program, Marketplace. Ross Harper and Ed Moyse, who owed a combined $80,000, launched BuyMyFace.com in October 2011 and have since been selling their faces as ad space to companies for hundreds of dollars a pop.

“Companies can literally buy advertising space on our faces. We then paint whatever they’d like: a message or logo onto our faces,” Harper told Marketplace.

Harper and Moyse post the pictures of their faces on BuyMyFace.com and people who click on the ads are then directed to the advertiser’s website…

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Colleges offer courses and training for flying unmanned drones

For students who haven’t yet declared a major, they might want to consider learning how to fly unmanned predator drones, the Huffington Post reports. A growing number of schools now offer courses and programs around building and flying drones, The Daily reported in a recent article. Jeb Bailey, 28, told The Daily he has taken every drone-related course at Northwestern Michigan College. It’s no wonder why, when drone pilots can make $50,000 to $120,000 per year, according to Tom Kenville, founder of Unmanned Applications Institute International. Bailey said the idea of flying unmanned drones for a year in Afghanistan to pay off student loan debt sounded pretty attractive. Bailey originally took classes on manned flight training, but said he was swayed towards studying drones after learning about how much more he could make contracting in a war zone. “In an airlines career path,” he said, “you really don’t expect to make a whole lot until you’ve been in the industry 20 years.”

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Apollo’s Black donates $48 million to Dartmouth College

Apollo Global Management LLC co-founder Leon Black and his wife are contributing $48 million toward a state-of-the-art visual arts center at Dartmouth College that will open in September 2012, the university said on Thursday, Reuters reports. The 105,000-square-foot facility will bear the Black family name and will house the departments of Studio Art, Film and Media Studies, and a Digital Humanities program.

“This visionary gift recognizes the centrality of the visual arts in our lives,” said Dartmouth President Jim Yong Kim. President Barack Obama last week nominated Kim as the next head of the World Bank.

Leon Black graduated summa cum laude from Dartmouth College in 1973 with a major in philosophy and history and received an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1975. Debra Black graduated Barnard College in 1976…

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Viewpoint: Colleges shouldn’t fear the cloud

Cloud adoption continues, despite lingering security concerns.

The irony about cloud computing in higher education is that most schools have used the technology to some extent but might not even realize it.

Gmail is one example. Yahoo Mail is another. The fact is, web-based applications—which many schools rely on for daily communication—don’t always register with most people as being part of the cloud computing trend. But they are, given that they essentially fit the layman’s rudimentary explanation of the cloud: where storage and computing capacity exist (provided by a vendor) so all that is needed on a PC, laptop, tablet, or smart phone is a browser.

There are more technical details to actual cloud infrastructure, platforms, and delivery, but for the purposes here, we will stick with the basic view.

There’s no question that cloud computing usage has exploded and will continue unabated. A new industry forecast is predicting that cloud computing will account for 33 percent of all data center traffic by 2015—tripling the current percentage and about 12 times the total current volume.

Perhaps even more interesting is the fact that cloud computing is not only becoming increasingly popular, but that it is growing in the education market—normally a slow adopter of new technology.

See also:

IT outsourcing: When it makes sense … and when it doesn’t

While higher education has always been viewed as an innovative force in networking and high-performance computing, major corporations such as Apple and Amazon have led the way when it comes to basic cloud computing. Two critical motivating factors are catalyzing educational institutions to investigate the cloud concept as an option because cloud computing can:

  • Substantially reduce hardware, software licensing and personnel costs. This also saves on space, repair, and electrical costs.
  • Provide new capabilities as they come to market without the incremental costs for equipment or support. The cloud now makes “keeping current” a much more viable option. This might include collaborative efforts such as allowing multiple admissions personnel to view the same student application simultaneously.

To these reasons, one might add the explosion in mobile devices that pressures IT departments—including those in the higher education environment—to provide 24/7 computing that is accessible from anywhere with no downtime. To top it off, there is also an avalanche of data that needs to be stored and analyzed.

Given their shrinking budgets and increasing applicants, schools have a major incentive to investigate cloud computing as a cost containment solution—certainly a simpler, more affordable, and more practical option than attempting to undergo major expansion and rehab of technologies they already have in place.

Why is cloud computing right for colleges and universities?

The advantages cloud computing can bring to a college or university are far-reaching; from a cost perspective, the benefits can reach across campus. Cloud computing can be used in everything from the internal IT organization using the cloud for business continuity planning, or storing archived copies of data off to a cloud storage area—even students’ papers and music that can be stored and retrieved whenever they want.

In the specialized areas of financial aid, enrollment, and admissions, the cloud has proven to be particularly beneficial.

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Everest University Online Makes Generation Donation to The Foundation for Florida Virtual School

Orlando, FL (March 23, 2012) – The Foundation for Florida Virtual School (The Foundation for FLVS) accepted a generous $14,000 donation on March 22 from Everest University Online, one of the nation’s leading online career colleges, in support of the Laptop for Learners Program.

The 2011 Florida’s Digital Learning Act requires all public high school students to complete an online course before graduating. Florida Virtual School (FLVS) is a free, award-winning, public option available to Florida students. As the official supporting organization of FLVS, The Foundation for FLVS provides the necessary resources to deliver a high quality, learning experience to Florida students. Everest University Online’s sponsorship of the Laptop for Learners program will assist The Foundation of FLVS in providing laptops on loan to 20 deserving FLVS students.

The Laptop for Learners program, which provides FLVS students in need with a loaner laptop, was re-launched in November 2011. Currently more than 35 students are being assisted through the program.

“The Laptop for Learners program saved my grandsons’ education when The Foundation for Florida Virtual School loaned us a laptop when ours crashed,” stated Cliff McRary, guardian of an FLVS student. “I have 22 years of experience in education and the traditional brick-and-mortar education does not even compare to the education they are receiving with FLVS. My grandsons have never had a problem getting special attention from their FLVS teachers, working with them until they understand the materials, attention he never got at his brick-and-mortar school. I am an advocate of FLVS, because of the wonderful educational experience we’ve had.”

About Everest University Online:
Everest University Online provides career-oriented associates, bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in accounting, business, paralegal, criminal justice, criminal investigations, homeland security and information technology. The Everest University Online Education Service Center is located at NetPark Tampa Bay, 5701 East Hillsborough Ave. Everest University Online is owned by Corinthian Colleges, Inc., one of the largest post-secondary education companies in North America. For more information, visit www.everestonline.edu. For more information about our graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information, please visit our website at www.everestonline.edu/disclosures.

About the Foundation for Florida Virtual School:
The Foundation for Florida Virtual School (The Foundation for FLVS), the philanthropic arm of Florida Virtual School (FLVS), strives to ensure all students have access to world-class education and quality online learning opportunities that prepare them for a lifetime of success. The Foundation for FLVS invests resources to award scholarships for academic achievement, provide support for clubs and events, and extend FLVS access to students who may not otherwise have the opportunity to benefit from online education. To learn more about The Foundation for FLVS and to make a donation, visit www.flvsfoundation.org.

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In the photo left to right: Judy Tordesillas, community and corporate development for Everest University Online; Star Kraschinsky, executive director for The Foundation for Florida Virtual School; Julie Young, president and chief executive officer for Florida Virtual School; and Keith Burkhalter, Everest University Online division vice president of operations.

Editor please note: could not attache photo. Please contact Tania Clow if you would like it emailed.

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Penn State World Campus Launches Major Initiative to Accelerate Growth in Online Learning

TORONTO, March 28, 2012 – Destiny Solutions, the leading innovator of lifelong learning business solutions, today announced that Penn State World Campus has introduced a new initiative aimed at dramatically growing its global online business. The effort, enabled by Destiny One™, centers around overhauling and scaling how the institution engages working professionals.

“Our adoption of Destiny One enables us to reimagine how we do business with current and prospective adult online students interested in a Penn State degree,” said Wayne Smutz, executive director of Penn State World Campus and associate vice president for Academic Outreach. “The successful implementation of new services delivers a richer experience for adult learners to research and choose the best educational program to advance their career or prepare for a new profession.”

Integrating Destiny One with its various mainframe systems, Penn State World Campus has centralized silos of data onto a single database, eliminated dozens of shadow systems and created a single platform to deploy new services through its existing infrastructure. This will allow World Campus to improve operational efficiency and fiscal control, while providing World Campus and Penn State academic units with a wealth of business insight to stay ahead of global market needs.

In the face of state funding cuts, the new platform will enable Penn State World Campus to rapidly and more efficiently deliver new student-facing capabilities to improve student engagement and grow enrollment. With the first set of capabilities to streamline program and course development already in place, the initiative will also include interactive enrollment, flexible registration and payment, and student degree tracking.

“In the lifelong education industry, it is critical for online institutions to effectively engage adult learners and quickly and efficiently respond to global market demand,” said Shaul Kuper, president and CEO of Destiny Solutions. “Destiny One is crafted from the ground up to help discerning institutions change the way they do business to stay ahead of the pack. We look forward to continuing our work with Penn State World Campus as it adds new services to advance its growth in online learning.”

Dr. Wayne Smutz will discuss the Penn State World Campus journey in a session called “Turboscaling your Adult Online Education Business” on March 29 at the upcoming UPCEA 2012 National Conference in Portland, Oregon.
For more information on Destiny One, please visit:

http://www.destinysolutions.com/product/destinyone-overview/

About Destiny Solutions

Destiny Solutions is the leading innovator of lifelong learning business solutions. Since 2001, Destiny Solutions has delivered breakthrough technology designed exclusively to meet the divergent needs of non-traditional higher education. Our flagship product, Destiny One,TM is the only business solution that offers integrated constituent, enrollment and administrative management on a single software platform. Crafted with the lifelong learner in mind, Destiny One is the most complete, agile and trusted business solution. It transforms traditional administrative systems so educators can grow revenue, enhance student experience and success, and improve operational efficiency.

For more information, please visit: www.destinysolutions.com.

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Chatham University Shines in GfK’s First Annual Next Generation Market Research Competition

New York, NY (March 28, 2012) – GfK, one of the world’s largest market research organizations, is proud to announce that Sarah Cornell and Hannah Esser, undergraduate students from Chatham University in Pittsburgh, PA are the winners of the first annual Next Generation Market Research Competition. Introduced in October 2011, GfK’s US-based Next Generation competition is designed to challenge student researchers and allow them a chance to test their marketing knowledge.

“Hannah and Sarah presented a well-researched, creative project and GfK is pleased to honor them with this award,” said David Krajicek, CEO of GfK Consumer Experiences North America. “Through this competition GfK hopes to generate excitement and interest in the market research industry amongst undergraduate students. This important initiative is a great way for students to become immersed in the daily life of a marketer, and truly become the next generation of talent for our industry.”

All students who entered the competition were required to conduct original qualitative and quantitative primary research and prepare a comprehensive research paper on a critical industry issue. The winning duo, Cornell and Esser, focused their research on the impact of social media with a final paper titled, “Like it – Buy it? Attitude-Behavior Relationships and their Implications for Social Media Marketing.” Their research examines the implications of brand pages on Facebook and whether the amount of “Likes” a brand page has influences the purchasing of a product.

“Facebook is a fascinating global phenomenon that we use daily,” said Sarah Cornell, undergraduate student from Chatham University. “Winning this award is not only a great feeling, but this project has been a wonderful learning experience. We’re appreciative of GfK and The ARF for giving us the opportunity to address a critical issue weighing on marketers’ minds today,” said Hannah Esser, undergraduate student from Chatham University.

As the winners of GfK’s Next Generation Award, Cornell and Esser received a $1,000 cash prize as well as an all-expense paid trip to New York City and presented their winning paper at the annual ARF Great Minds Award Ceremony held on March 28th.
For more information about GfK’s Next Generation Market Research Competition, visit
http://www.gfkinsights4u.com/gfk_next_generation_market_research_competition_now_open_to_college_students.html

About GfK
GfK is one of the world’s largest research companies, with more than 11,000 experts working to discover new insights about the way people live, think and shop, in over 100 markets, every day. GfK is constantly innovating to use the latest technologies and the smartest methodologies to give its clients the clearest understanding of the most important people in the world: their customers. In 2011, GfK’s sales amounted to EUR 1.37 billion.
To find out more, visit www.gfk.com or follow GfK on Twitter: www.twitter.com/gfk_group

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Extron Announces Two Output HDMI Distribution Amplifier

Anaheim, California (March 28, 2012) – Extron Electronics is pleased to introduce the HDMI DA2, a one input, two output distribution amplifier for HDMI video and embedded multi-channel digital audio. The HDMI DA2 supports HDMI specification features including data rates up to 6.75 Gbps, Deep Color up to 12-bit, 3D, Lip Sync, and HD lossless audio formats. This HDCP-compliant distribution amplifier supports all HDTV rates including 1080p/60 and PC resolutions up to 1920×1200. It features two Extron-exclusive technologies: EDID Minder®, which maintains continuous EDID communication between connected devices; and Key Minder®, which authenticates and maintains continuous HDCP encryption between input and output devices. The compact HDMI DA2 is ideal for applications that require the distribution of an HDMI source signal to two displays.

“AV system designers and integrators have been asking for a distribution amplifier that not only splits an HDMI signal but manages communication between the source and the displays,” says Casey Hall, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Extron. “The latest addition to our growing line of HDMI products, the HDMI DA2 with EDID Minder, fills their need for a reliable, high performance HDMI distribution amplifier, and offers a host of integrator-friendly features.”

To enhance and simplify integration, the HDMI DA2 offers integrator-friendly features, including automatic input cable equalization, automatic bit depth management, selectable output muting, and indicators for monitoring and troubleshooting. Input cable equalization restores and reshapes incoming HDMI signals, reducing the need for additional signal conditioning equipment by compensating for weak source signals or signal loss from a long input cable. The HDMI DA2 automatically adjusts color bit depth based on the display EDID, preventing color compatibility conflicts between source and display. Outputs can be muted independently via RS-232, allowing content to be previewed on a local monitor. Additionally, the distribution amplifier provides immediate visual confirmation of EDID status, HDCP authentication, and signal presence confirmation for each port via front panel LED indicators.

For more information, visit our Web site at www.extron.com.

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Students with big ideas to convene for Clinton Global Initiative University

Three students at George Washington University want to build low-cost bamboo bicycles for transportation in sub-Saharan Africa. A junior at New York University wants to make a doll for every child with night terrors. Four Georgetown University students want to extend microcredit to cash-strapped entrepreneurs, the Washington Post reports. This weekend, Bill Clinton is coming to town to help them. The fifth annual Clinton Global Initiative University meeting convenes Friday evening at GWU, bringing together more than 1,000 students from 80 countries and every state to discuss how each hopes to change the world. The weekend agenda includes a one-on-one session Saturday night between Clinton and talk-show host Jon Stewart. Fittingly, the session concludes Sunday in a day of service, with students repairing homes and assembling care packages for the military…

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