Central Oklahoma sits snugly in Tornado Alley, but it was a flood, not a twister, that shocked officials at The University of Oklahoma into the realization that student advising records were one natural disaster away from disappearing forever.
The Library and Information Services (LIS) department at Carthage College (Wis.) has provided support services to the campus community since 2001. Part library information desk, part IT and media help desk, LIS’ 22 staff members answer nearly 10,000 questions a year, ranging from where to find a book to figuring out why a student’s email account suddenly stopped working or helping a faculty member put a course online.
Vanishing boundaries, emerging opportunities. That was the overarching theme in Orlando this June as approximately 1,000 attendees gathered at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin resort for learning, networking, and fun. Some traveled far to UBTech 2013—with attendees from Brisbane, Australia; London; and Rio de Janeiro—and others came in from a few dozen colleges and universities in Florida.
Ask any taxpayer who impatiently begins checking the mailbox within days of filing an income tax return: People may wait until the last minute to pay a bill, but when owed a refund, they want it as quickly as possible.
And so the manual refund process at American Public University System (W.Va.) was problematic. Financial aid refunds at the fully online school took up to 10 days to process; nonfinancial aid refunds could take up to twice that time. And that was with staff members who did nothing but process refunds full time.
Where can administrators go for ideas and answers to questions about Clery Act compliance? Soon, it may be easier to learn what peers are up to in this area. On July 1, the Clery Center for Security On Campus launched the new year-long Collaborative Learning Program. Representatives from 34 Pennsylvania institutions can learn about Clery together and self-assess their compliance efforts, says Alison Kiss, executive director for the Clery Center.
This May, the news broke that Yale University had been fined $165,000 by the U.S. Department of Education for Clery Act violations. The charges against Yale are considered significant and serious: failure to report four instances of forcible sex offenses occurring between 2001 and 2002.
Imagine arriving on campus as a prospective student, being greeted by name by the security guard at the gate, pulling into a parking spot with your name on it, and then seeing your name featured prominently on signage in the admissions office. There you meet up with a student tour guide from your hometown who is studying just what you think you’ll study.
That scenario is a reality at Lynn University (Fla.), which gives new meaning to the “where everybody knows your name” sort of welcome.
Students, faculty, and staff turn to campus help desks when their work has come to a standstill because technology isn’t behaving as they think it should. IT support centers at colleges and universities across the nation are ditching paper and turning to software solutions to help get frustrated users back on track more effectively and efficiently.