In This Issue
Avi Asher-Shapiro

The University of Minnesota, Morris is located in a small 5,000-person town, and its 1,200 residential students often rely on university-sponsored activities for entertainment. To fully engage students in on-campus life, in 2012, Morris’ IT director Jim Hall decided to develop an app that alerts students to the university’s events and on-campus programming. Read more>>

Avi Asher-Shapiro

A state-of-the-art emergency alert system that can reliably reach the entire student body is a must for modern-day universities. “It’s really imperative,” says Gary Nickerson, IT director at Oklahoma Baptist University, a 2,000 student school in Shawnee, Oklahoma. In implementing these alerts systems, university IT directors like Nickerson face an important choice: they can develop their own product or purchase a system from a vendor. Read more>>

University Business

In this UBTech 2013 featured session, Mark Greenfield, director of the office of web services at University of Buffalo, explores how the forces of technology and globalization will redefine higher education. He provides guidance not only on how to survive, but how to thrive in this new paradigm. Read more>>

Marcia Layton Turner

Realizing that access to critical information was difficult during an emergency, members of Texas A&M Health Science Center's Environmental Health and Safety department developed a mobile app that would give campus community members instant access to emergency instructions and information through their phones. The app has been so successful that the university's IT department created a start-up venture, named m2s3 Holdings, Inc., to facilitate commercialization of the app. Read more>>

Ed Finkel

The exploding popularity of MOOCs is beginning to open up a mother lode of data about prospective students that colleges and universities can use for marketing and recruitment purposes. MOOCs are still in their infancy stages, and the concept of leveraging their reach as a data-rich marketing vehicle for the institution is even newer. But it’s beginning to gain a foothold. Read more>>

Thomas W. Durso

One day Greg Flanik, chief information officer of Baldwin Wallace U, walked into the university’s data center and saw an astounding 75 servers humming along. “I’m standing in the room and looking at all these other machines, and I said, ... ‘What an incredible waste. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could get all these machines and consolidate them into a smaller footprint?’” Read more>>

More Innovations
Tech Crunch

Udacity co-founder and CEO Sebastian Thrun and California Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom have announced the Open Education Alliance, a consortium of online organizations dedicated to closing the skills gap, developing standards for career readiness and providing the content that will help get students ready for the workforce. Read more>>

The Nation

MOOCs were promoted as the disruptive innovation that would make higher education better, cheaper and more widely available. Not only would they be free and disconnected from a university, but instead of enrolling 100 students, like a typical lecture course, they would enroll hundreds of thousands of students. Read more>>


Business incubators have been around since the 1950s. Typically attached to universities, these entities offered a proving ground with back-office resources for fledgling entrepreneurs. Now a new breed of incubator, catering mainly to technology types, is springing up all over the country. Read more>>

Michigan State University Today

The ReInvent Law Laboratory at Michigan State University’s College of Law was named a 2013 InnovAction Award winner in recognition of its work to promote innovation in the legal services industry. Read more>>

Herald Online

The University of California, Irvine has been awarded a Distance Education Innovation Award by The National University Technology Network for its development of OpenCourseWare content, specifically for its Open Chemistry project. Read more>>


Erin Webster is a computer engineering graduate student, University of Massachusetts Lowell. Along with Jay Weitzen, professor of electrical and computer engineering at UMass-Lowell, and technology companies Analog Devices and Digilent, she is creating a “Lab In A Box” – a new way of getting students excited about electrical and computer engineering for the 21st century. Read more>>