5 reasons SysAdmins are being celebrated

New infographic celebrates SysAdmin Day 2014

sysadmin-it-infographicDid you know that today, Friday July 25, is the 15th anniversary of SysAdmin Day? We didn’t either, and we’re sure our IT team is glad we do now.

SysAdmins also perform critical tasks for institutions across the country, and to help explain exactly what those tasks are, as well as the character traits needed to perform these tasks well, Untangle–a network software and appliance company– has created an infographic to celebrate SysAdmin Day.

Thank you to all the SysAdmins out there, and for not completely losing it in this era of mobile devices; anytime, anywhere access; data security; and all-online systems.…Read More

Five ways to save money on campus IT

Here are five money saving ideas from colleges and universities nationwide

Virtualizing servers and sharing IT services are among the many ways that campus IT departments are saving money.

Virtualizing desktops and servers, moving to energy-efficient technologies, and sharing IT services across institutions are among the many ways that campus IT departments nationwide are saving money.

In this special roundup, we’ve pulled together five examples of how colleges and universities are saving money on technology. To learn more about each example, just click on the headline.

Program takes eWaste off universities’ hands, replaces it with cash…Read More

EDUCAUSE exhibitors respond to key campus IT trends

Trends such as student success, competency-based learning were a focus of many announcements from EDUCAUSE 2013 exhibitors

Collaborative learning was another key higher-education trend that EDUCAUSE exhibitors sought to address.

Exhibitors at the 2013 EDUCAUSE conference in Anaheim, Calif., unveiled new ed-tech products that responded to several key trends in higher education, such as helping to ensure student success and facilitating a shift to competency-based learning.

One important trend in recent years has been an increased focus on student success and retention, with many colleges rolling out programs designed to track student performance and deliver more personalized, targeted support to keep students engaged and on a path to graduation.

As a reflection of how significant this trend has become, “leveraging IT for student success” tied for the third biggest priority among campus IT leaders this year, according to the 2013 Campus Computing Project survey. And in response to this trend, a number of EDUCAUSE exhibitors introduced new products (or discussed existing services) designed to help boost student success.…Read More

Device theft a growing concern on campus

Annual survey of campus IT leaders indicates device theft is their top IT security concern

35 percent of campus IT leaders reported the theft of a computer, phone, or thumb drive with confidential data this year.

The theft of computing devices with confidential data on them is a growing concern for campus IT leaders, a national survey suggests.

For the past five years, the percentage of IT leaders reporting the theft of devices on their campus has hovered around 20 percent. This year, it rose to 35 percent, according to the 2013 Campus Computing Project survey.

Casey Green, director of the Campus Computing Project, cautioned higher-education leaders not to read too much into this finding.…Read More

Key campus technology challenges ‘no longer about IT’

2013 Campus Computing Project survey reveals shifting higher-education technology needs, priorities

The technology itself is “the easy part” of campus IT leaders’ jobs, Green said.

The top challenges facing campus technology leaders today “are no longer about IT,” Casey Green, founding director of The Campus Computing Project, told attendees of the 2013 EDUCAUSE conference in Anaheim, Calif., Oct. 17.

Instead, the top challenges for campus technology leaders include supporting faculty and students, and communicating technology’s effectiveness to presidents and provosts.

The technology itself is “the easy part” of campus IT leaders’ jobs, Green said. He added: “Technology is almost linear by comparison” to all of the other demands that campus IT leaders face, such as managing people, policies, priorities, and egos.…Read More

The key to campus network security: Better risk management

“Identify the threats most likely to impact your company, and spend your limited funds defending against those,” one expert says.

Campus networks host tens of thousands of devices each day, and while those devices have access to network resources, campus IT administrators must be vigilant as they strike a balance between openness and vigilance.

Finding that balance can prove difficult if IT administrators attempt to address every single threat, no matter how relevant that threat might be to the campus. Many experts suggest focusing on a university’s mission, and adjusting security measures so they support this mission.

Campus IT security staff should determine exactly that, said Dave Cullinane, retired chief information security officer at eBay and co-founder of the Cloud Security Alliance, during an EDUCAUSE webinar to celebrate October’s Cyber Security Awareness Month.…Read More

Campus IT’s No. 1 worry: Protecting student, faculty data

College campuses have seen a major increase in the number of mobile devices since 2009.

Eight in 10 colleges and universities allow students to access the school network with any mobile device they bring to campus, but less than half have an official policy for enforcing certain security standards before a smart phone or computer tablet can use the school’s internet connection.

Those findings – along with a range of others showing campus technologists fret over student and faculty data security – were detailed in an April 16 report from CDW-G that listed higher education’s most persistent IT concerns.

Most college and university IT officials surveyed said their campus had taken basic information protection measures like installing web security filters, or using encrypted storage and data loss prevention programs as the number of people who access college networks has increased by 41 percent since 2009.…Read More

How to lead change successfully in uncertain times

Author and motivational speaker Simon T. Bailey advised campus leaders how to thrive in times of change.

Author and motivational speaker Simon T. Bailey has some advice for how campus leaders can thrive in an era marked by rapid change and disruptive technologies: Focus on people, process, and problems.

Bailey was the opening keynote speaker at the 40th annual conference of the Association for Information Communications Technology Professionals in Higher Education (ACUTA), held in Orlando April 3-6. The conference brought together nearly 300 campus technology specialists from across North America to learn about the latest trends and new developments in delivering voice, video, and data services to higher-education stakeholders.

The theme for this year’s conference, “Succeeding in the New Reality,” was a nod to the many challenges facing colleges and universities today, including cuts in federal and state education funding that make it harder to invest in campus IT infrastructure—as well as the accelerating pace of change in education and technology. And it was this latter challenge that Bailey’s keynote sought to address.…Read More