ANNUAL REPORT 2001-2002 Table of Contents Foreword …………………………………………………………………….. 1 Overview …………………………………………………………………….. 2 Directors’ Reports Administration………………………………………………………….. 3 Business Computing……………………………………………………. 8 Academic Operations & Systems Support ...….…………………….. 12 Telecommunications……………………………………………………. 21 Technology Outreach …………………………………………………. 26 Project Management…………………………………………………… 31 Research and Development……………………………………………. 34 Public Relations……………………………………………………………… 38 Significant Accomplishments……………………………………………. 38 Future Plans…………………………………………………………………...40 Appendix: Organizational Chart Foreword Fiscal Year 2002 was one of great challenge and significant accomplishment for Information Systems as we settled into an era of managing a full implementation of the University’s technology initiative. While rising to meet new challenges, we continued to demonstrate excellence through improved service levels, high national rankings, and expanded services to our user community. The 2001-2002 year marked our third year of full implementation of the ThinkPad project. All undergraduate, Babcock, and School of Medicine students at Wake Forest have IBM ThinkPad computers. ThinkPads are now a standard in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. An enhancement of our own intranet, WIN, which was rolled out in the fall, provided the campus with faster, more reliable access to campus resources. Primarily through WIN, we continued our progress in enhancing the administrative processes of the University with technology driven solutions. The implementation of online timekeeping for the University’s non-exempt employees provides staff with the convenience of reporting their time online while benefiting Finance and Accounting Services and Human Resources with more accurate data and time savings in processing payroll. Online course registration and foreign language testing are now seamless parts of the student experience at Wake Forest. In collaboration with Student Government, the WIN team developed and implemented e-voting for all student elections as well. Throughout 2001-2002 Information Systems staff worked collaboratively with all information technology professionals on campus, including those in the Instructional Technology Group, the Z. Smith Reynolds Library, the Babcock School, and the School of Law, to upgrade our PC-based operating systems from Microsoft Windows 98 to Windows 2000/XP. This change is the most significant server and client change since the migration from Windows 3.1 to Windows 95 in 1996. The project planning took virtually the entire year, with implementation during the summer of 2002. Training developed and delivered by the IS staff for administrative computing users has been most widely welcomed during this year. This training, focused on specific computing applications, is an important complement to the computer-related staff training offered by Human Resources. As anticipated, the 2001-2002 year presented significant challenges in managing the amount of Internet bandwidth available to academic activities on campus. File sharing technologies such as Morpheus introduced significant growth in peer-to-peer file sharing activities, resulting in a serious bandwidth crisis during the year. Information Systems responded both with a campus-wide educational campaign for students, faculty, and staff and the implementation of rate limiting on our campus network. To prevent such problems in the future, Wake Forest successfully upgraded its wide area networking capability to bring increased Internet bandwidth to the campus. We deployed the first North Carolina High Speed Regional Point of Presence in conjunction with the School of Medicine, the North Carolina School of the Arts, Winston-Salem State University, 1 2 Forsyth Technical Community College, Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools, the Chamber of Commerce, and the Idealliance. We are now connected to other non-profit educational organizations in Winston-Salem at an amazing 1 billion bits per second. Together the WinstonNet consortium has 622 million bits of access from this network to the Internet through the NCREN3 network. We have one of the most capable and advanced networking infrastructures available anywhere in the country. From the perspective of personnel, 2001-2002 was another exceptional year. Our turnover remained low. Our success in retaining staff continues to contribute to substantial gains in both the stability and quality of service we provided in the past year. Among our many efforts this year was the development of our 5-year strategic plan. Still in the refinement stages, this plan promises to: • Establish the completely integrated digital campus, providing a set of systems that allow the business of the University to be conducted effectively, efficiently, and with greater accuracy. • Significantly add to the value of a Wake Forest education through student- centric technology projects that focus on the student experience and through the expansion of our already successful student programs. • Recapture technology leadership in higher education by reinvigorating the technology project through a new deployment of post-ThinkPad technology. • Redefine electronic communications at the University as we employ new technologies to ensure long term financial stability for the telecommunications department in a rapidly changing business environment. Our efforts over the next several years will be to bring these goals to fruition. In doing so, we believe that we will support the University’s overall mission and in particular the strategic goal of leveraging our existing advantage in technology. Supporting the academic enterprise remains our unswerving focus. Overview Information Systems (IS) operates under the direction of Jay Dominick, Chief Information Officer (CIO) and Assistant Vice President. In January 2001 the department underwent a significant reorganization that gave the CIO three direct reports, each overseeing one of three primary areas: operations, project management, and research and development. Fiscal year 2002 was the first full year of operation under this organizational structure, which is outlined in the organizational chart, available through the Information Systems web site at http://www.wfu.edu/technology/about_is/staff/index_frame.htm. Nancy Crouch, Assistant Chief Information Officer, manages the operations group. The bulk of IS staff members work within operations to support the daily needs of faculty, 3 staff, and students. Within operations there are five functional areas, each one led by a director. Kriss Dinkins, the Director of Technology Outreach, oversees the student outreach programs, community outreach programs, and departmental communications. This year the Outreach team assumed responsibility for the University Call Center, described in detail later in this report. John Henderson, Director of Administration, is directly responsible for the financial management and asset management in Information Systems. Tommy Jackson, Director of Telecommunications, manages the campus computing network, multimedia services, campus telephone and cable television services, and all associated projects. Lee Norris, Director of Academic Operations and Systems Support, oversees all computing systems, the Wake Forest Information Network (WIN), and academic support, including Hardware Technical Support and the Help Desk. Business Computing, responsible for the administrative computing systems at the University, is currently managed by two assistant directors, Lea Anne Iles and Lynn Berry, reporting directly to the Assistant CIO. The Project Management Office (PMO) works under the direction of Lynda Mitchell, Director of Project Management. Under Mitchell’s direction, the PMO established guidelines and work flow processes for project management within IS. Such processes are enabling the department to plan, implement, and manage projects across the campus most efficiently. Anne Bishop, Director of Research and Development, leads the research and development efforts for IS. Focused on innovations in academic technology, the research and development group led multiple projects this year piloting the use of new technologies campus-wide. In all, 104 employees currently serve IS. Of these, 92 are regular full-time employees and 8 are part-time; presently, there are 4 open positions in IS. Eleven staff members received promotions during the past year; three staff members submitted resignations; one retired; one was terminated; and one moved to another department within Wake Forest. Directors’ Reports Operations……………………………………………… The Operations area is comprised of Academic Operations and Systems Support, Administration, Business Computing, Technology Outreach, and Telecommunications. Highlights concerning the activities of the operational units follow. Administration The Administration team is responsible for overseeing Information Systems’ financial activities, directing the department’s human resources operations, managing the 4 University’s hardware and software technology assets procured through Information Systems, and directing contract and compliance management for the department. Financial Management In fulfilling its responsibilities for financial management, the Administration team maintains the Information Systems budget, manages departmental payroll, and administers financial processes for auxiliary telecommunications services and for ICCEL. Financial management within Information Systems begins with the budgeting process. In coordination with the Chief Information Officer, Assistant CIO, and Information Systems’ functional area directors, the Administration team’s financial group is responsible for preparing, analyzing, tracking, and forecasting Information Systems’ operational, salary, and capital budgets. This team is also responsible for payroll processing for Information Systems’ biweekly staff and students; procurement of goods and services; preparing purchase orders; receiving documentation; processing invoices; depositing cash and checks; managing interdepartmental billing; and preparing journal entries. The financial team was instrumental in the smooth transition this year of non-exempt staff monthly payroll to the new online, biweekly system in WIN. The financial group also coordinates online payroll submission for approximately 75 IS student employees. This year the Administration team’s finance group has further refined the use of nVision, a tool that allows the creation of timely, detailed, customized reports from PeopleSoft. Human Resources Management Fiscal Year 2002 was another year of change for Information Systems with all but one of the department’s functional units experiencing a personnel realignment or reorganization during the year. A major reorganization occurred within the Technology Outreach department by reorganizing staff to create the University Call Center. This unit was staffed from personnel transferring from Administration and Business Computing, as well as two telecommunications operators previously assigned to Technology Outreach. The Administration team facilitated these changes within Information Systems and served as liaison in these transitions with the Human Resources department. Routinely, IS Administration coordinates the application of human resource management procedures and forms, including position descriptions, physical requirements checklists, exempt status determinations, hiring requisitions, job postings, and hiring and exit checklists. New in Fiscal Year 2002 was the University’s requirement of the Annual Performance Review for all regular status employees. The Administration team assisted in fulfillment of those reviews, especially the requirement of written position descriptions for all jobs. To track and communicate personnel changes and departmental restructuring, the Administration group maintains an online organizational chart on the IS website at http://www.wfu.edu/technology/about_is/staff. 5 Asset Management The IS Administration’s Asset Management team has the primary responsibility for inventory control of the University’s technology hardware and software assets procured and maintained by Information Systems. In this role, overall project management for the distribution of computers, printers, and other technology assets to students, faculty, and staff is assigned to the Director of Administration. The complete life cycle of technology assets is managed under the supervision of one team. This cycle begins with needs analysis, budgeting, and procurement. To ensure efficient and secure inventory control of technology assets, the Remedy Asset Management software application is utilized. This system allows full life cycle tracking of technology assets from receipt, warehousing, and distribution through the end of the life cycle. The Remedy system houses all asset data on current ThinkPads and printers as well as relevant demographic information for students, faculty, and staff. The first major test of the Remedy Asset Management system came at the beginning of fall 2001 semester when it was used successfully in the ThinkPad and printer distribution to incoming first- year students and rising juniors. Student Equipment Distribution The Asset Management group plays a major role in student ThinkPad and printer procurement and distribution. The team is responsible for determining student ThinkPad eligibility, quantity requirements, and coordinating logistics for the distribution of this equipment to first-year and third-year students, as well as transfers and readmitted students. Distribution to students takes place at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters. In the fall, first-year and transfer students receive ThinkPads and printers on move-in day, while rising juniors exchange ThinkPads and receive new printers during the first week of classes. At the beginning of the spring semester, Information Systems distributes equipment to new first-year and transfer students and conducts a ThinkPad exchange for juniors who were abroad during the fall semester. To assist students in understanding the ThinkPad and its software, the ThinkPad project team works closely with staff of the Information Technology Center in the Z. Smith Reynolds Library to develop support and training materials for the ThinkPad. New undergraduate students and new faculty members receive a Technology Guide outlining features of the ThinkPad and solutions to many common computing questions. In addition, all new undergraduate students must attend a mandatory ThinkPad orientation session led by the Z. Smith Reynolds Library staff with assistance from Resident Technology Advisors, the Instructional Technology Group, and Information Systems staff. The library staff also offers student training classes throughout the year based on student interest. Faculty Equipment Distribution As part of the Undergraduate Plan’s technology component, full-time faculty members typically receive a new ThinkPad every two years. On the basis of a distribution schedule determined by the Dean of the College and the IS Director of Administration, the Administration team’s Asset Management group works with Support Center staff and 6 the Instructional Technology Group to distribute new ThinkPads to faculty each summer. The summer distribution periods allow faculty to become familiar with the new ThinkPad before classes begin. More extensive two-hour orientation sessions that began in June are led by trainers from the Information Technology Center in the Z. Smith Reynolds Library. These sessions help acquaint faculty with the new features of the ThinkPads and the Windows XP operating system. IS Support Center staff and members of the Asset Management team assist with this distribution and training, which is held in ICCEL training facilities in the Information Systems Building. Faculty members who are unable to exchange ThinkPads during the summer will receive new ThinkPads in August, when new and temporary faculty members receive computer equipment. Delivery of new equipment will be completed by the beginning of the fall 2002 semester. Staff Equipment Distribution To ensure that administrative departments have access to technology capable of meeting their computing needs, IS performs a hardware analysis for administrative staff offices each year. Following this analysis, each administrative department submits its computer allocation request to IS through Financial and Accounting Services’ online budget system. In 2001-2002, IS received requests for 172 new and 18 refurbished ThinkPads in staff offices. In response to these requests, IS allocated approximately 65 new A30 ThinkPads and 65 refurbished units. In addition, 17 IBM Netvista M41 desktops have been procured for staff offices and the Z. Smith Reynolds Library, as well as seven of these units for the Instructional Technology Group. Asset Management also provided for the distribution and tracking of technology equipment to Graylyn International Conference Center and provided twenty-four refurbished A21m ThinkPads for Reynolda House this year. To address the issue of aging laser printers in staff offices, Information Systems completed a campus printing solutions project this year. This project included an inventory of existing laser printers, a needs analysis, and customer opinion survey. As a result of this project, Information Systems procured 63 new Lexmark T522 laser printers and began placement of these units, in exchange for outdated printers in staff offices, in June. In addition, this project team recommended an upgrade of the campus inkjet printers from the current Lexmark Z42 to the mid-range Hewlett-Packard 940C inkjet. The initial shipment of 200 of these printers was received in June, and staff allocations began at that time. Of these new inkjets, 96 are allocated as upgrades in academic departments and 61 are allocated to staff departments. The student shipment is scheduled for the first week of August, well in advance of the first-year ThinkPad distribution. Graduate Student ThinkPad Program The Administration team has worked closely with the Dean of the Graduate School in the development of a technology initiative for graduate students. For the past two academic years, a ThinkPad rental program has been in place for the graduate students in master’s degree programs. In addition, Asset Management worked with Financial and Accounting Services and the School of Medicine’s Computer Sales and Service division to make an 7 extended payment purchase plan available to these students. During the past two years, IS Asset Management worked with the Graduate School in procuring and distributing new ThinkPads to matriculating Ph.D. students, which will continue in 2002-2003. The Graduate School ThinkPad initiative has expanded for the 2002-2003 academic year to provide two-year old refurbished A20m ThinkPads to all incoming master’s degree program students. Asset Management provided early distribution of the A20m to 27 master’s students who began their program of study in June. The remaining A20m ThinkPads will be distributed to the incoming master’s students the day before fall classes begin. Refurbishment & Resale Asset Management is responsible for refurbishing ThinkPads that students, faculty, and staff return in exchange for new machines. Asset Management has revamped the refurbishing process completely to achieve more efficiency, higher quality, and lower costs. During 2001-2002, a total of 1089 refurbished ThinkPads were sold to local public school systems for use by teachers and staff. Obsolete equipment not needed on the Reynolda Campus is offered for sale through the School of Medicine’s Computer Sales and Service division or donated to local charitable organizations. A share of revenue from sales was returned to the Reynolda Campus. Contract/Compliance Management The Administration team facilitates contract negotiations and execution among Information Systems teams, the University’s Legal and Purchasing departments, and external vendors and providers. Responsibilities of this group include managing license renewal negotiations; originating and distributing requests for proposals; and negotiating quantity, pricing, and other terms and conditions for new contracts. In this capacity, the Administration team ensures licensing compliance for Wake Forest standard load software, including Microsoft Office, enterprise software, and selected academic and administrative applications. In addition, the team works with the School of Medicine and the Reynolda Campus professional schools on software procurement and compliance issues involving shared software, particularly the Microsoft Campus Agreement. This group also monitors budgetary guidelines for licensing and determines future licensing requirements. The new Remedy Asset Management application is being utilized in contract and compliance management and will expand in scope in the coming fiscal year. The IS Administration Department played an active role this year in the negotiation and procurement of Adobe products for the standard software load on the new A30 ThinkPad. All A30 ThinkPads include Adobe Acrobat 5.0; in addition, concurrent licenses allow limited access, on an as-needed basis, to Adobe Photoshop, Elements, Illustrator, and Premiere through KeyServer, a software license management utility. IS Administration facilitated the increase of the available KeyServer licenses on campus, and serves to verify the licensing and compliance for departmental requests to add new software to the KeyServer. 8 Business Computing The Business Computing team consists of two areas: programming and database administration and business computing support. Together, the staff in Business Computing seek to provide the University with reliable, efficient computing services and support for administrative processes of the University. Programming and Database Administration The programming and database administration group within Business Computing is responsible for supporting the administrative computing applications used for administrative functions in offices throughout the campus, including everything from Admissions and Student Life to Human Resources and University Advancement. In the past year, this group has played a major role in implementing a number of new projects and in refining processes for existing activities. Through these efforts, this group has assisted administrative departments in conducting their work more efficiently and effectively. Highlights of these efforts appear below. Projects Major projects during the past year included the conversion from a credit-based to hour- based course registration system, implementation of the online telecommunications billing project, and the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) reconciliation project. Credits to Hours In conjunction with the faculty decision to move from a credit-based system to a semester-hours based system for the Undergraduate College, the Business Computing team worked closely with the Registrar’s Office to develop a system that will allow accurate maintenance of records both for students admitted under the new hours system and for those who enrolled under the previous credits system. This project was completed in July 2001, enabling incoming students who enrolled in fall 2001 to begin under the new system with great success. Call Accounting Project Working with the call accounting project team, Business Computing team members developed interfaces that allowed for automated nightly updates of financial and biographical data. The new processes not only greatly reduced the amount of manual work involved in processing monthly telecommunications bills, but also provide greater control of data accuracy with the billing system than available with the previous system. FASB Reconciliation Project This project, implemented on June 30, 2002, provides an automated process for use by Financial and Accounting Services and University Advancement in reconciling year end giving. This new process has eliminated tremendous amounts of manual work required in the past. 9 Process Improvements Because of the Business Computing team’s involvement with many administrative processes, each year the team devotes considerable time to enhancing administrative computing services to support these processes. Among the efforts this year have been initiatives related to student records management, Financial and Accounting Services, University Advancement, and Human Resources. Student Records Management • New grade mailer for undergraduate students. This initiative allowed printing of grades on regular 8½” by 11” paper, eliminating the need for expensive, customized forms and envelopes, thus resulting in significant cost reductions each semester. • Law School registration enhancements. This initiative involved creation of a unique term code for the Law School, which eliminated much of the difficult scheduling complexity previously required for conducting the Law School’s online course registration process through WIN. • Satisfactory Progress Report for athletes. This effort allows Athletics staff to generate reports on student athletes’ academic performance, as required by NCAA regulations. In the past, this process was entirely manual, taking significant time and thus making interim analysis of students’ progress cumbersome. • Clearing House Upload. This process allows automated transfer of financial aid data, again eliminating significant manual work. Financial and Accounting Services • CQ/PQ Hold process. Creation of this process eliminated a major manual process. With this process, financial holds on student accounts are placed and removed automatically, based on a student’s account status. • Purchase order roll-overs. This process allows FAS to move outstanding purchase orders at the end of the fiscal year to the new fiscal year. Previously, all outstanding purchase orders had to be closed in the prior fiscal year, then re- entered in the new fiscal year records, creating significant rework. • BiTech GL updates. This process automatically updates GL chartfield accounts in BiTech after these updates take place in PeopleSoft. This eliminates redundant work and greatly reduces the possibility of error, thus reducing reconciliation and research time as well. University Advancement • New pledge reminder process. This change provides University Advancement with an easier interface that allows this department to print pledge reminder notices internally, providing better looking and less expensive forms. • Alumni year end tally report. This report allows University Advancement a tool to compare donations from class year to class year, without programmer intervention. • Council for Aid to Education reports. These annual reports provide an accounting of the gifts to the University each year and are used to compare Wake Forest data with other universities. This year, the programming underlying this report was modified so that University Advancement staff can incorporate additional 10 information in the future, as required by the Council for Aid to Education standards, without requiring programmer intervention. Human Resources & Payroll • Paid Time Off policy. With the implementation of the University’s new paid time off policy came significant programming modifications. The Business Computing team provided the required modifications to implement this system quickly and effectively. • Online timekeeping. Working with the WIN team, the Business Computing team implemented this new WIN application, which provides non-exempt employees with up-to-date information on their accrued time off and sick leave reserve hours while drastically reducing payroll processing time. • Electronic performance evaluation form. To ease the process for completing the University’s new performance evaluation process, Business Computing converted the paper performance evaluation form into an electronic document. This allowed staff and supervisors to share the document via email, greatly streamlining this process. • Human Resource Benefits. The addition of new employee benefits through Human Resources created a need for new reports and modifications of the application that handles benefits such as optional life insurance, group life insurance, and dependent life insurance. • Student master file conversion. Business Computing developed new programming to support the transition of student employee data from payroll to Human Resources. • Development of a new budget screen. Among other things, this effort eliminates manual payroll work required for employees who are paid from multiple accounts. Together, these projects and process improvements have helped ensure that the University is conducting its business in accord with all regulatory guidelines and as efficiently as possible. In the coming year, the programming and database administration group looks forward to continuing to provide support for improvements and changes in the University’s business processes. Business Computing Support Business Computing Support (BCS) provides user support services for standard and non- standard computing applications to the University’s administrative departments, auxiliary operations, and senior management through two channels: the BCS Help Desk and on-site technical support. The BCS Help Desk offers first-level support to administrative users via telephone and email. Business Computing Support Consultants provide on-site support for resolution of issues escalated to second-level support. During the past year, Business Computing Support continued to strengthen its role as a single point of contact for administrative users. A Student Admissions Module user group was added to the existing BOX and RIM user groups. This user group, which meets periodically during the year, provides opportunities for members of the Undergraduate Colleges, the Graduate Schools of Arts and Sciences, the Babcock 11 Graduate School of Management, and the School of Law to discuss issues common to all and to gain a greater understanding of how their actions affect other users. To streamline the processes associated with upgrading administrative computing systems, the Business Computing Support group worked with Business Computing’s software engineers to develop a testing strategy that includes all users affected by any upgrade effort. The model created was well received by the user community and will be used as a template for future upgrades, decreasing the time required to complete software upgrades and user acceptance testing. Deployment of technology in the University’s administrative offices is a major component of the support offered by BCS. BCS Consultants installed 141 ThinkPads and 30 printers during the fall semester allocation process. Support during the allocation process provides users with assistance in data backup and transfer as well as installation and initial testing of non-standard software applications. To further enhance support of our administrative users, BCS began development and delivery of training programs for campus-wide business applications. Utilizing the talents of individuals across the department, the BCS team developed and delivered customized end-user and Help Desk training for two new business applications: online timekeeping and online telecommunications billing. In addition, a course for the new A30 ThinkPad, utilizing the XP operating system, was developed and delivered to Information Systems staff. Based upon participant feedback (see below), the sessions were a tremendous success. BCS will continue to offer this service as new administrative systems are implemented. Number of Session Offered Attendees/ % Number of % “Disagree”or Evaluations “Strongly % % ”Strongly Received Agree” “Agree” “Ambivalent” Disagree” Online Timekeeping 349/322 Training Efficiency 60% 33% 3% 4% Instructor 73% 27% 0% 0% Effectiveness Online 73/67 Telecommunications Billing Training Efficiency 58% 38% 3% 1% Instructor 67% 31% 2% Effectiveness A30 ThinkPad / 36/31 XP Introduction Training Efficiency 68% 26% 3% 3% Instructor 84% 16% 0% 0% Effectiveness To assist the FAS and HR teams during the transition to the new online timekeeping system, the BCS team created an Excel-based timesheet for use by non-exempt employees. The timesheet incorporated HR policies and procedures, resulting in a more 12 streamlined method to report and process employee time records while easing the transition to a fully online system. In late 2001, management responsibility for the FAS Call Center was transferred to the Technology Outreach group and transformed into the University Call Center. The BCS staff member previously responsible for this remained within BCS and moved into an administrative computing support role, allowing BCS to increase the number of consultants without increasing overall headcount for Information Systems. Academic Operations and Systems Support Academic Operations and Systems Support includes the Help Desk and Hardware Technical Support, Systems Operations, Systems Development, and WIN. The information below provides details of the year’s activities in each of these areas. Support Services Providing reliable, prompt, accurate, and professional computing support continues as top priority for Information Systems. The Support Services group – which includes the Help Desk (walk-in and phone support) and Hardware Technical Support areas – is critical in providing quality support to students, faculty, and staff. Since 1997, our customers have given Information Systems’ support teams consistently high marks for service. As part of this year’s ongoing efforts, Information Systems identified the following support goals for 2001-2002: 1. Maintain Support Services’ continuous improvement program as a way to refine the support services offered to IS customers. 2. In response to continuous improvement program findings, refine basic support functions to allow greater responsiveness and follow-up on system and network downtime. 3. Expand capabilities within the Hardware Technical Support center to allow more on-site repair and increased responsiveness to repair needs. 4. Expand career opportunities within Academic Operations and Systems Support for Help Desk and Hardware Technical Support staff. Continuous Improvement Results Last year Information Systems implemented a new method of measuring customer satisfaction. This new method was designed to build an information base for a continuous improvement program within Support Services. This year Support Services saw significant benefits from this approach. During the 2001-2002 year, the Information Systems Help Desk handled an average of 500 calls per week. Peak call volumes occurred during the back-to-school period each semester, with 1300 calls per week during these periods. Lowest volume occurred Thanksgiving week, with 160 calls. In all, the Help Desk received 55,000 calls during 2001-2002, up 1000 from 2000-2001. Despite this increase, the number of unanswered (or abandoned) calls decreased from 4000 to 2000 from FY 2001 to FY 2002. 13 An essential component to customer service satisfaction is the quality and promptness of response to each of these calls. In 2000-2001, call abandons (calls that Help Desk staff members are unable to answer before the caller hangs up) were a source of concern. In October 2000, the Help Desk had a consistent abandon rate of 14%, which significantly exceeded the industry norm of 7% to 9%. By February 2001, abandon rates averaged just above 6%. During the 2001-2002 year call abandon rates continued to run at an average of around 6%, but have dropped as low as 3% for several weeks at a time (as in the February/March 2002 timeframe). In 2002, the University’s Human Resources department expanded the amount of paid time off (PTO) available to staff members. Consequently, during early summer 2002, Help Desk abandon rates climbed to 11% for several weeks as staff members pursued PTO leave for summer vacations. These changes impacted overall results in keeping abandons low. As a result of this policy change, Help Desk management is now looking at new staffing models that include additional part- time staff — mainly students — to level these abandon rates during sparse staffing periods. In addition to monitoring and adjusting for call volume, managers of the support organization conduct weekly surveys focusing on very specific aspects of service quality. The survey consists of five questions focusing on promptness, courteousness, effectiveness of support, clarity in explaining the problem, and overall satisfaction levels. If ratings in any area are low, the customer is asked to provide a verbal description indicating the concern that contributed to the low rating. The customer is also given the option to comment on each question and an option to provide overall comments on the support experience. Upon completion of a support call, Help Desk staff direct customers to an online version of our customer satisfaction survey and suggest they complete the survey. To supplement this sample, a Help Desk staff member randomly selects customers from records of completed support calls and calls each customer to administer the survey until ten additional surveys are complete. This approach allows for timely feedback and connects survey responses to individual support calls and support consultants. Results include the following: 1. Overall customer satisfaction ratings in all areas comfortably surpass industry standards. Mean satisfaction ratings for all respondents to our survey from July 2001 to July 2002 were 93%. Neutral responses (a rating of 3 on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being very satisfied) are calculated as “unsatisfied” for the purpose of compiling this statistic. If neutral responses are calculated as “satisfied”, satisfaction ratings increase to 96%. Ratings have improved since last year when 83% expressed satisfaction with Help Desk performance in February 2001, and 91% expressed satisfaction in July 2002. All these numbers compare very favorably to industry standards of 75%. Similar satisfaction ratings appear below in the Hardware Technical Support section. 2. In addition to overall satisfaction, the survey also measures support consultant skills such as problem analysis and communications. Low numbers in any of these areas can be correlated with specific customers, specific Support 14 Consultants, and specific support activity. This information allows Help Desk management to focus on individual training needs. Based on these results, Support Services management has targeted specific consultants for professional development in verbal communication, telephone skills, and application-specific support. Because the survey has consistently shown very high ratings in all areas, Support Services intends to modify the instrument in the future to capture additional performance areas, allowing for continuous improvement processes into other performance areas. Changes in Hardware Support For two years, Information Systems has maintained a self-insurance ThinkPad repair program, which has remained financially healthy throughout. In its first year, this program improved hardware repair turn-around time by more than three days on average and in turn improved customer service ratings dramatically. As part of the warranty repair process, IBM’s customer service organization conducts a survey of the University’s hardware repair customers for overall satisfaction. IBM reimburses the Hardware Support group for all warranty repairs and provides a premium based on customer service ratings. In effect, the higher the customer service ratings an organization receives, the higher the level of repair reimbursements. IBM has consistently found outstanding overall performance ratings in IS’ Hardware Support area. In 2000- 2001 satisfaction ratings ranged from 90% to 97% and averaged 93%. With an increase in satisfaction ratings to 95% in early 2001-2002, the Hardware Support group was designated in mid-2001 as an IBM Premier Service Center, becoming one of two such centers in North Carolina. This designation increased the repair premiums earned by the group on each warranty repair, in turn contributing to the solvency of the self-insurance program. This has also brought significant IBM-financed training opportunities to Hardware Support personnel. These opportunities should grow in the coming year. For instance, the Hardware Support group achieved a 97% satisfaction rating in May and June of 2002. If this satisfaction level persists for a full quarter, the Hardware Support group, already ranked in the top 5% of service centers in the U.S., will achieve IBM’s highest customer satisfaction level and will again benefit from the possibility of increased revenue and training opportunities. Improvements in Career Opportunities for Support Staff To retain experienced staff and the service quality they can provide, the Support Services group has continued its efforts to implement a career development path within Support Services. As part of this plan, a senior consultant position was established in FY 2001, and one Support Consultant I position was converted to a Support Consultant II position. This plan was fully implemented during 2001-2002. Staff members were promoted to fill these positions and were then given additional authority within the Help Desk. These new positions have become second- and third-tier escalation points for Consultant I staff members, and have provided the basis for shifting frequently requested systems services to Help Desk staff. With this change, senior Help Desk staff can perform activities such as listserv creation, user account management, and printer management that involved as much as a three-day turnaround time when performed by 15 systems administrators; now, such requests are often resolved the day they are received. During the coming year, the Support Services team will continue to move other such tasks to the Help Desk to provide faster response to customer requests. In addition to changes made in the Help Desk staffing structure, a Technical Hardware Support manager position was created in the Hardware Technical Support area. This position has oversight of all hardware technical support and repairs, and has been instrumental in further increasing customer satisfaction levels in the Hardware area as noted above. In the coming year we hope to extend this effort by creating a Technician II position within the Hardware Technical Support area. As part of the process of career development this year, Academic Operations and Systems Support management established a cross-training program. This program allows support staff members to train in other technical areas within IS. To date, members of the Help Desk and Hardware Technical Support have undertaken training in systems administration, networking, and application development; as a result, they have developed support applications and become much more adept at problem diagnosis. In addition, this training has allowed Support Services staff to develop deeper and broader cross-functional expertise. This cross-training program will continue full force in the coming year. Future Plans for Support Services The Support Services group has outlined a number of significant goals for 2002-2003. These include the following: 1. Implementation of total call ownership. With customer satisfaction extremely high, it is imperative that support staff pay careful attention to all survey results showing dissatisfaction. Through detailed study of such surveys, staff members have found that one place where IS can make substantial support improvement is in follow-up on escalated support calls. To address this, Information Systems plans to implement a total call ownership program. In a total call ownership process, the support consultant who is first assigned the call is responsible for all aspects of follow-up (both internal and external), and has full authority to obtain action on the call within any area of IS. This person monitors the support activity from start to finish, obtains regular reports on progress, and keeps the customer regularly apprised of progress throughout. Implementation of this process will require fully redesigning the Remedy Help Desk system currently in use, developing policies and structures in support of the process, enhancing technical training for support staff, and providing customer service training for more technical staff members such as network and systems analysts and administrators. 2. Improve turn-around on Systems requests. Another area where IS can improve support results is in reducing turn-around time on requests for such activities as listserv creation and management, user account administration, and print queue administration. The Support Services and Systems groups will accomplish this by continuing to shift additional basic administrative access and responsibilities to senior Help Desk consultants. 16 3. Continue and enhance cross-training. Continued cross-training is critical to achieving many Support Services goals, particularly the first two goals outlined for FY 2003. Cross-training is also an important component of job satisfaction for support staff and provides a framework to prepare talented staff for other career opportunities within IS. Systems Support Systems Support is provided by both the Systems Development and Systems Operations groups. The Systems Development group is responsible for the implementation of all academic and business computing systems. The Systems Operations Group is responsible for the administration of all systems services. In 2001-2002, Systems Support performed numerous enhancements to the computing infrastructure. These improvements were aimed at achieving the following goals: • Continuing improvements in systems performance requirements associated with the campus intranet (WIN) and other business related applications, including such things as online student registration, online course materials, business and student services, and other intranet-related projects. • Continuing to reduce total ownership costs for the systems infrastructure and to reduce support costs wherever possible. • Successfully implementing Windows 2000 in support of the June-August 2002 rollout of Windows XP clients. IBM SP/2 Network and Other UNIX Systems The IBM SP/2 networks consist of high-performance, parallel-processing capable IBM SP/2 computing complexes called frames. Each frame contains a number of RS/6000 computers called nodes. Nodes within a frame are interconnected with a high-speed internal communications switch that allows each node to communicate with other nodes at dedicated speeds of 100 megabytes per second and greater without using the campus network. This allows SP/2 frames to function either as parallel processing supercomputers or as a collection of independent computing nodes. Although only maintenance-level upgrades were necessary to the SP/2 infrastructure during 2001-2002, staff continued to examine overall cost of ownership for the aging SP/2 network and to perform research to determine the technology that would supersede these networks. By September 2001 it was clear that LINUX-based computing clusters would provide the best replacement technology for the SP/2 network, and experiments began with a number of alternatives, including SUSE, MOSIX, and Red Hat. Ultimately, this led to the purchase of an IBM LINUX cluster for use in scientific computing. Installation of this cluster is scheduled to begin the first week of July 2002. This cluster offers the cost of ownership advantages of LINUX and the management features of the SP/2 network. Knowledge gained in implementing this LINUX cluster will be used by current Systems staff to implement additional clusters in place of the existing SP/2 infrastructure. 17 To assist in implementing this new LINUX cluster, IS will add a Systems staff member, with experience from the LINUX supercomputing implementation at Vanderbilt University. This staff member’s time will be shared with Computer Science and Physics. In addition to the activities related to the SP/2 frames, Systems Support manages a number of stand-alone UNIX systems. Two important highlights of activities related to these systems are as follows: • Library system. Systems migrated all Voyager disk space from SSA to EMC disk space in the new EMC disk environment (see EMC Upgrades below). Systems also configured and installed a new IBM pSeries 680 to replace the existing Voyager server. At the time of this report, this server was up and running, but the migration of Voyager to the new platform had not been completed. Target completion for this is October/November 2002. • School of Law mail server. Systems continued its email management partnership with the School of Law and added disk space to increase quota on the Law School email server. Systems also began the process of planning the full integration of Law email and network accounts with the University-wide computing infrastructure. The target completion date for this process (except email accounts) is August 2, 2002. LINUX Systems In addition to the LINUX cluster activity associated with the SP/2 migration, Systems staff performed other production LINUX implementations as follows: • Sophos email virus filtering. Although Wake Forest-issued ThinkPads come equipped with Norton AntiVirus software, 17% of all Help Desk traffic in FY 2002 was associated with computer viruses and trojans (small programs, delivered through another file, that corrupt or compromise data, security, and software applications). Because almost all of these viruses and trojans were delivered by electronic mail, Systems began plans to implement antiviral filtering for the electronic mail system. This implementation, which was completed in October 2001, consists of a cluster of five LINUX computers running Sophos antiviral filtering software. These IBM xSeries 330 servers, with single 1.2 GHZ Pentium III processors and 512 MB of RAM, use automated processes to disassemble and examine all incoming electronic mail for viruses and trojans. If the filtering system finds a virus or trojan, it notifies the sender and the intended recipient but does not deliver the infected message. This cluster processes between 40,000 to 75,000 messages a day, depending on the time of year, and has the capacity to evaluate more messages. In the first several months of life the system prevented transmission of an average of 700 viruses a week. In late May and throughout June, this number soared to over 3700 per week, largely because of a new and prolific virus called KLEZ. During this period many unprotected sites on the Internet were infected and subsequently brought temporarily offline by KLEZ, but Sophos protected the Wake Forest campus. Since its implementation in October, Sophos has intercepted vast numbers of viruses, thus protecting the health of the University’s ThinkPads, the campus network, and 18 the University’s productivity. Implementation and subsequent high performance of this service on inexpensive, modestly powered LINUX computers has also proven that the entire electronic mail infrastructure can safely move from SP/2 nodes to smaller, far less expensive LINUX-based servers and still perform exceptionally well. • DHCP and Dynamic DNS infrastructure. Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) and Dynamic DNS provide network address and name assignment services to ThinkPads as they connect to the campus network. As part of the Windows 2000 implementation, Systems staff installed DHCP on Windows 2000 DHCP servers. Systems testing showed that this worked well for providing addressing, but created potentially serious security and functionality gaps with the Windows DHCP server when interacting with AIX-based and other UNIX-based DNS servers, a very serious problem since campus Internet services rely upon AIX-based DNS services. After much research, Systems staff again discovered that LINUX provided the only viable solution to this problem and began to migrate all DHCP and Dynamic DNS services from Windows 2000 to LINUX, with completion of this process scheduled for July 2002. This case suggests that many Systems activities, both from a Windows 2000/NT and UNIX perspective, can be performed more efficiently and cost-effectively with a LINUX-based infrastructure. • Electronic theses and dissertations. In conjunction with the Graduate School, the Z. Smith Reynolds Library, Carpenter Library, and the Professional Center Library, Systems staff installed a LINUX-based electronic thesis and dissertation system, linked to the Voyager library system. This system allows graduate students to file theses and dissertations online and allows the libraries to catalog and index these documents electronically. It also allows users access to these texts online through the online catalog system. This saves the graduate student printing costs, saves the libraries inter-library loan costs, and dramatically increases use of the material contained in these theses and dissertations. Systems completed this project in March 2002, and the Graduate School went into production with this in April/May of 2002. • WIN test environment. Systems Support added a LINUX-based development environment for WIN to allow for regression testing and staging of applications before implementation. EMC Disk Infrastructure Substantial portions of this year’s systems work centered around replacement of portions of the EMC disk infrastructure with upgraded EMC hardware and software. This infrastructure provides redundant, high speed disk storage to all mission-critical systems and many other systems within IS. This includes, but is not limited to, the SP/2 network (which contains such systems as electronic mail) and the student records and financial systems. In 2000-2001 the EMC disk infrastructure consisted of one Symmetrix 3430, one Symmetrix 3930, and fiber links utilizing SRDF software for business resumption processes. This year the Symmetrix 3430 was replaced with an EMC 8530 series Symmetrix. Additional disk storage was installed to provide for future growth. Implementation of this upgrade required the installation of the Symmetrix 8530 and the migration of all data on the 3430 without shutting down production systems. Although 19 accomplishing this task took eight weeks of planning and four weeks of migration work, the migration was 100% successful. In addition to upgrading the disk infrastructure, Systems also added two EMC Celerra systems to the infrastructure. Celerra systems are, in effect, gigantic file servers capable of providing consolidated file sharing for Windows 98/NT/2000/XP and UNIX networks. To perform these functions, Celerras utilize an optimized version of the LINUX operating system to offer NFS and SMB shares to network clients. Currently there are over 60 Windows NT/2000 servers providing a variety of production network services. Many of these provide some form of file services. Installation of these Celerras was undertaken to allow consolidation of these NT file servers into a single, more manageable platform. Migration of NT file services to Celerra will be complete in October 2002. At that time we anticipate removing at least twelve aging NT/2000 servers from service. Windows NT Network Two issues drove activity with the Windows NT Network this year. As noted in the EMC section above, Systems Support began implementation of Celerra which ultimately will reduce server management requirements and improve reliability of file services. This decision led systems administrators and management to hold the line on all new Windows NT implementations as well as on some upgrades. Additionally, planning and performing the implementation of Windows 2000 obviated any additional growth in the Windows NT 4.0 network. Given growing requirements from the applications environments and growing security risks afflicting the Microsoft Windows server environment, standard maintenance this year was extensive. It included extensive work on items such as disk and memory upgrade and optimization, frequent login script changes, and frequent application and testing of Microsoft service and security packs. One notable implementation within the existing Windows network did occur. As part of the effort to continue providing high quality financial systems, Systems staff worked with Financial and Accounting Services to implement budget reporting for all budget directors. This was done using a Windows 2000 server and CITRIX software. Windows 2000 Network As noted above, the Windows 2000 implementation project occupied vast amounts of resources in FY 2002. This effort included staff from many IS teams as well as four Instructional Technology Group staff, who worked with IS staff under a new IS-ITG partnership program. These partnerships, conducted in conjunction with the Dean’s Office, allowed these ITGs to participate as full IS staff members for up to 10 hours a week for the duration of this project. In September 2001, Systems staff began to plan implementation of the server infrastructure and the provision of extensive technical training in Windows XP and Windows 2000 Server to staff members in Information Systems, the Instructional Technology Group, and the Information Technology Center. The main portion of this implementation culminated in the completion of the first Windows 2000 network, called 20 DeacNet, at the end of May 2002. This network currently provides login, active directory, file, and printing services for all new ThinkPads. As of July 1, 2002, more than 200 client systems were members of the DeacNet network, and configuration of 2800 additional clients for the DeacNet network was underway. By August 30, 2002, there will be nearly 3000 clients participating in the DeacNet network. All non-administrative network clients will participate in DeacNet beginning in October 2002. This will bring the total number of DeacNet users to approximately 4000. HP 3000 Systems Because Hewlett-Packard announced the obsolescence, by 2005, of the HP 3000 system platform this year, Systems Support’s efforts to optimize performance on the HP 3000 focused on upgrades required for adding disk capacity to the EMC disk arrays. Such disk space is recyclable to any system that replaces the HP 3000. Efforts related to the HP 3000 in the coming year will focus almost entirely on planning for platform migration. WIN: Wake Forest Information Network The Wake Forest Information Network, or WIN, is the University’s Intranet. It provides students, faculty, and staff with access to online services and information. Some of the most popular of these services are online registration, degree audit, grade lookups, online purchasing of textbooks, campus telephone directories, budget reporting, telephone bill information, and student and non-exempt staff time cards. As noted in last year’s report, Systems completely reengineered the WIN architecture in spring 2001. In 2001-2002, this reengineered architecture provided outstanding performance. Although this change generated many improvements within the systems infrastructure, the most important impact was on class registration. All incoming first-year students must register for classes when they arrive at Wake Forest University. Compressed into a single day, this registration process takes place in an eight-hour window, with students assigned registration starting times in 15 minute increments. In the past, the systems architecture was unable to fully cope with this stress, causing dissatisfaction among incoming students and the Registrar’s Office. With the newly designed WIN architecture, which had been subjected to two months of performance tests, Systems worked with the Registrar’s Office to conduct a 100% successful registration process in August 2001. During this process all students successfully registered online, each student had individual assistance as needed, and no overflow lines formed in the library or the Registrar’s Office. This made one of the first Wake Forest computing experiences for incoming students impressive and successful. WIN undertook many development projects in 2001-2002. Some of the more significant projects are as follows: • Alumni career networking. This project, which grew out of a Babcock School idea to include Alumni Affairs as well as the career services offices for the Law School, the College of Arts and Sciences, and the Babcock School, created an online directory of 21 alumni who agreed to publish valuable information about themselves (such as contact information, willingness to assist in placement, or mentoring) for use by students in their career planning. The application was implemented in April 2002 and has seen widespread use, with hundreds of alumni already participating in the career networking process. This not only enhances the career search process for current students but also assists the University in maintaining close relationships with alumni. • Staff Online Timekeeping. Based on the success of the online payroll application for student employees, which was implemented in FY 2001 and provided significant productivity savings, the WIN team worked with Financial and Accounting Services and Human Resources to develop a similar application for non-exempt University employees. This application was implemented in March 2002, with training provided by Business Computing Support for all non-exempt staff and their supervisors. For FY 2003, WIN has established a number of goals. Most important among these are two: • E-commerce. The ability to perform financial transactions online will become a very important part of what students will expect from University systems in the future. Exploring and implementing infrastructure and applications in support of this activity will occupy considerable effort in 2002-2003. A significant portion of this time will be devoted to the planning of a cohesive security structure in support of these efforts. • HP 3000 replacement. As noted above under the HP 3000 section, HP will discontinue HP 3000 support and service at the end of 2005. This will significantly impact our registration and student records processes within WIN. Much of 2002-2003 will be devoted to dealing with how to replace the HP 3000. Telecommunications The Telecommunications team is comprised of five functional areas: networking, multimedia, videoconferencing, cable television, and telephony. Although these areas have unique responsibilities, they work closely with each other as technological convergence is occurring. The department as a whole is focused on operational excellence, most notably in ensuring availability of services. Network Operations Center (NOC) The Network Operations Center remains an essential part to the overall development and success of the data network. With the exponential growth in data flowing through the infrastructure, it has become increasingly important to ensure quality of service for the applications that support daily activities on the campus. Because of the dynamic nature of the industry, it is important for NOC staff to have access to appropriate training and tools for analyzing traffic patterns; more important is the opportunity for staff to 22 collaborate with other universities in learning about current technology and current best practices. One example of this is the recent formation of a network engineering committee, which has several North Carolina higher education institutions represented in its membership. This committee has played an important role in identifying applications and associated traffic patterns that can be disruptive to daily operations on the data network. They are also developing possible solutions that allow these applications to be available to the Wake Forest community while maintaining quality of service to daily applications. The most profound example of this is the increased popularity in peer-to-peer applications such as Morpheus and Kazaa. Additionally, the NOC staff has played an important role in several classroom wireless pilot programs by providing usage statistics that help in assessing these programs. Data Network Several projects over the past year have focused on enhancing the functionality of network resources. Perhaps the most profound effort has concentrated on enhancing the speed and continuous availability of campus Internet access. This project began with the addition of a secondary gateway router. If the primary router fails, the secondary router can assume routing functions within thirty seconds. A second stage of the project focused on connection of the campus to a new regional Point of Presence (rPOP) located in Winston-Salem. The hardware located at the rPOP provides a one gigabit Ethernet connection to the campus, compared to the prior connection speed of 155 megabits per second. Additionally, connection to the rPOP has allowed creation of two backup paths from the campus to the Internet, thus reducing the risk of Internet access disruptions. Further testing and eventual implementation of Virtual Private Networks (VPN) has been an additional focal point in enhancing the campus network. This technology has proven to be a reliable and secure means by which users can use a public network, such as the Internet, to access sensitive data, such as information on the campus administrative network. The Bowman Gray campus’ Legal Department piloted this service to access resources on the Reynolda campus, while Financial and Accounting Services staff have used VPN to access private resources from the WFU public network. Given the success to date, we will continue to deploy VPN solutions as an integral part of daily network operations, which may eventually eliminate the need for the separate administrative network. Infrastructure The integrity of any data network is only as reliable as the infrastructure upon which the data is carried. Because of this, the infrastructure team continues to research and develop a variety of solutions that provide high availability. The most recent infrastructure solution being researched and tested is VDSL (Very High Speed Digital Subscriber Line), which – like ADSL technology – uses telephone cable infrastructure. However, ADSL data rates range from 1.5 to 9 megabits per second when receiving data and from 16 to 640 kilobits per second when sending, while VDSL operates in data ranges of 13 to 55 megabits per second, with fastest connections at short distances. In addition, VDSL incorporates both voice and data services on the same cable, thus eliminating the need to 23 install additional copper cables beyond the existing telephony infrastructure. This technology is being researched as a possible solution in some locations on the Graylyn campus. Additional infrastructure enhancements being planned include replacing or upgrading all uninterruptible power supplies (UPS) that support data hardware. Additionally, a plan has been developed to connect all UPSs to the data network, so that their performance can be monitored through the Network Operations Center. Wireless From a technology perspective, the wireless infrastructure on campus has remained unchanged during the past year. The existing wireless access points and wireless network interface cards utilize the 802.11 standard, which provides 2 megabits per second with frequency hopping. The wireless network includes 205 access points that provide coverage to approximately 40% of the campus in many residence hall locations, the Z. Smith Reynolds Library, and common areas such as the cafeteria in Reynolda Hall. During the past year, underutilized access points have been moved to instructional locations for wireless pilot projects. The Telecommunications team is aggressively researching two newer wireless standards: 802.11b, which shares 11 megabits per second of bandwidth; and 802.11a, which shares 54 megabits per second. In evaluating these, security and service quality are major criteria. Multimedia The 2001-2002 fiscal year was a period of continued expansion for multimedia at Wake Forest. The Multimedia team continued the upgrade and renovation of classrooms to improve audio and video quality, control systems, and lighting. As of June 30, 2002, 78% of campus classrooms are multimedia enabled. The Multimedia team approached classroom technology from several directions to improve both the ease of use and quality of support for faculty and staff. The standards established for the undergraduate classroom technology have expanded to auxiliary entities as well. Customized Training The Multimedia team has aggressively taken its technology-training program to the faculty in order to ensure the maximum use and value of the technology to the University. In the 2001-2002 year, the Multimedia team continued faculty and staff training both on an individual and group level. This has not only significantly reduced the number of complaints and trouble calls but also increased the ways in which faculty members integrate the technology into their curriculum. Annual Training Each department is contacted annually to schedule a training session conducted by the Multimedia team. The training is offered at the end of the summer and scheduled so that it may accommodate both new and returning faculty. This training covers all aspects of the classroom multimedia systems and focuses on interaction with the equipment. 24 Group Training Training is also offered throughout the school year to faculty and staff. The Multimedia team schedules one academic department per week for training. This allows the Multimedia team to train any faculty members who are unable to attend the summer training sessions and to address any new issues that may have arisen. Individual Training If a group training session does not satisfy the needs of faculty or staff members, the Multimedia team provides individually tailored training upon request to accommodate individual schedules or special needs. Multimedia Web Site A Multimedia web site (http://www.wfu.edu/technology/multimedia/) was expanded to give faculty and staff a resource for learning more about multimedia services at Wake Forest, including detailed instructions for operating classroom multimedia equipment. It also provides scheduling and technical information for satellite downlinks and videoconferencing. Additionally, users can access cable television channel line-up information and can find help in connecting and configuring their televisions with the campus cable system. Multimedia System Uniformity In 2001-2002, the standardization of all classroom technology systems continued. In addition to the logistical and maintenance savings that uniform classroom systems provide, uniformity also allows users to operate classrooms systems technology outside of their regular department without the need for additional training. This is vital to an integrated, University-wide classroom technology plan, giving faculty and students access to all forms of multimedia regardless of location or classroom size. The key to this program is a common, interactive, color LCD touch panel that controls the systems in each room. These uniform touch panels can now be found in all classrooms. This year the standardization was extended to system document cameras, with digital cameras replacing many older analog based cameras. Additionally, twelve older Epson projectors were replaced, giving Wake Forest a single projector manufacturer (Sharp) across the Reynolda Campus. New Installations By the beginning of the fall 2002 term, the Multimedia team will be responsible for 187 multimedia classrooms. This year the Multimedia team’s reach crossed the Atlantic Ocean to install a standard classroom in the Flow House in Vienna, Austria. The breakdown for all new multimedia classrooms is as follows: Number of new Building multimedia rooms Salem Hall 1 Scales Hall 1 Winston Hall 1 Carswell Hall 3 Flow House, Austria 1 Total 7 25 In addition to the standard multimedia classrooms, the Multimedia team has developed a role in specifying equipment in several other types of rooms on campus. The new Athletic Enhancement Center, Graylyn, and Wake TV are just a few examples. Videoconferencing Videoconferencing at Wake Forest University expanded in several ways during 2001- 2002. With the direct connection from the Reynolda Campus to the North Carolina Research and Engineering Network, faculty from the Reynolda Campus can now participate in videoconferences with fewer technological and scheduling constraints, as the video connection no longer depends upon availability of resources at the Bowman Gray Campus. Currently, the Reynolda Campus has three videoconferencing systems available for academic activities as well as for remote employment interviews of Wake Forest degree candidates. In addition, the Multimedia team has expanded videoconferencing options by acquiring a portable videoconferencing system based on the H.323 standard, which transmits videoconference data through regular Internet pathways, at no cost, rather than over leased telephone lines. In addition to reducing the cost of videoconferencing, this creates greater flexibility in scheduling videoconferences, which can now take place using the portable videoconferencing system in any room that has a network jack and a power supply. During the fall semester, this technology was deployed by the Health and Exercise Science department in offering a joint course with Winston-Salem State University. University Cable Television Improvements to the Wake Forest University Cable Television (CATV) system continued throughout fiscal year 2001-2002. The most significant change in the cable television system has been the transition to direct management and support of the system to achieve greater professionalism and quality of service. All customer service issues for the CATV system are now routed through the Information Systems Help Desk and resolved by the Multimedia team rather than by a subcontractor, as in the past. The move to in-house maintenance of the cable television system also allowed for better infrastructure development and maintenance. In the past year, the Multimedia team has continued substantial renovations to the cable system that began in FY 2001. The work this past year has improved the system in the following ways: • Redundant or outdated distribution points have been removed throughout the campus. • Fiber optic cabling has been used to distribute the CATV signal to major distribution points throughout campus. • The Time Warner signal feed has been relocated to the IS building. • The entire system has been mapped to allow for quicker repair and utilization for special events. 26 Telephony The Telecommunications group took several steps to improve telephony services to the University community during 2001-2002. Highlights of these efforts follow. Personnel A new telecommunications manager was placed this year for voice services. The manager oversees daily operations and the new online billing service. A new technician was also added to the staff. This technician will play a dual role supporting telephony service requests as well as cable television maintenance and repair. Online Billing During FY 2002, the Telecommunications team worked with other IS teams and Financial and Accounting Services to implement an online billing system for telecommunications charges. Through an application service provider, full call rating and detailed reporting of long distance and other telecommunications billing services are available through WIN. Students can see a daily update of their phone charges online, and faculty and staff can view monthly listings of all charges. Department heads and proxies may see listings for an entire department. Telephone system and voice mail The Nortel Meridian system has been upgraded for increased efficiency. Faster system processing and increased maintenance capability in the switch have reduced time in restoring service and isolating service interruptions. Through an agreement with Residence Life and Housing, Telecommunications now provides caller ID and call waiting as part of the campus housing package. Upgrades to the voice mail system have included the installation of a dual memory system that provides full redundancy. In the event of a service interruption, the Telecommunications team can restore caller information and messages with no loss. Voice over IP and technology With continued improvement in Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) technology, Telecommunications has continued preparations that will allow migration from the current telephone system to the new medium. The phone system upgrade completed during FY 2002 increases the core processing speed, thus preparing for a more efficient transition and integration of new technology. In the coming year, the Telecommunications team will work with Information Systems’ Research and Development team to begin an investigation of VOIP and related technology issues. Technology Outreach The Office of Technology Outreach supports multiple campus and community initiatives. During FY 2002, the Office of Technology Outreach continued to refine communications processes for the department and expand Information Systems student programs with greater student involvement. In addition, the Technology Outreach group grew as it assumed responsibility for management and expansion of the University Call Center (outlined below) and daily operations of the WinstonNet initiative. 27 Student Programs Information Systems has established a tradition of leveraging student resources to enhance the technological learning environment. With the Resident Technology Advisors (RTAs), Student Technology Advisors (STARS), Knowledge2Work, and Arthur Vining Davis STARS, Wake Forest University’s Information Systems department developed model programs that have been replicated throughout the country. Further information concerning these programs is available at http://www.wfu.edu/technology/ programs.html. Resident Technology Advisors Resident Technology Advisors, or RTAs, are full-time undergraduate students, with sophomore standing or higher, who live in residence halls and provide first line computing support to undergraduate students. For the 2001-2002 year, the RTAs received monthly stipends totaling $3600 for the academic year. The RTA program supported 14 students, including 5 sophomores, 7 juniors, and 2 seniors. Three of these students were female; three were minority students. During the 2001-2002 year, the RTA program worked to increase awareness concerning the services that RTAs provide. The goal for the upcoming year is to increase the effectiveness of the RTAs through: o Continued hiring based on the student’s ability and desire to interact and help other students. As always, technical skills are second to interpersonal skills. o Promoting the RTA hotline (758-RTAS) through the RTAs, the desktop of the ThinkPads, stickers on the ThinkPads, and IS staff members. o Continued collaboration with Residence Life and Housing’s Resident Advisors program to provide knowledge and assistance to residents. o Increased training. To assist with ongoing training, selected IS staff members will continue to attend RTA meetings to address computing and technology support questions. o Continued access to Remedy (a help desk management tool) and ongoing participation of Information Systems staff in the RTA listserv. The students will be challenged to define new ways in which they can further apply their technology and leadership skills to enrich campus life. We will also challenge them to refine the role of an RTA to better accommodate the needs of their residents. Further information concerning the RTA program is available at http://www.wfu.edu/ technology/RTA. STARS: Student Technology Advisors The 2001-2002 academic year marked the fifth year of the Student Technology AdvisoRS (STARS) program. In FY 2002, 25 students participated in STARS, including 4 first-year students, 5 sophomores, 6 juniors, and 10 seniors. Eighteen of these students were male and 7 were female; five were minority students. The STARS continued their efforts to support a diverse group of faculty projects during the academic year. Summaries of the STARS projects during the year are available at http://www.wfu.edu/technology/ STARS/projAndTier/proj.htm. 28 During 2001-2002, the STARS program continued to focus on developing leadership and fostering creativity among the students. As in the past, the students led their own meetings and developed and implemented the marketing plan for TIER (Technology In Education Review). Throughout, the students displayed a high level of professionalism. In the coming year, the STARS program will have a decreased number of students. The students will be empowered to think of innovative ways to reach the faculty with limited resources. The students will also work on modifying TIER (http://tier.wfu.edu/), which will become a one-day conference instead of a two-hour event. Arthur Vining Davis STARS The Arthur Vining Davis STARS project, which partnered Wake Forest students with local educators in using technology, received an extension for a third year of operations in 2001-2002 using funds left over from the original two-year grant. During this year, the project focused on providing student technology mentors to teachers who serve students with distinctive social or educational needs. Seven teachers from five public and private schools participated in the project, working with six STARS, including two sophomores, one junior, and three seniors. This model proved effective, and teachers were enthusiastic about the benefits they received from working with the Arthur Vining Davis STARS. With the conclusion of the project, the knowledge about technology training needs for K12 educators gained through this project have been shared through a presentation at the IBM ThinkTank conference, a gathering of K12 and higher educational institutions involved in or considering laptop programs. In addition, the Arthur Vining Davis STARS project web site has been revised to provide information and suggestions on initiating a project like this in other settings. Students who worked as Arthur Vining Davis STARS will be encouraged to participate in other IS student programs to ensure that they continue to have access to challenging, technology-related work opportunities. In addition, Technology Outreach staff will continue to work with Winston- Salem/Forsyth County Schools (WS/FCS) to support them in implementing a school- based STARS program that will partner WS/FCS students with teachers in their respective schools. Knowledge2Work The 2001-2002 year marked the second year of operation for Knowledge2Work, which grew to include 26 students by the end of the 2001-2002 academic year. The group included 5 first-year students, 4 sophomores, 10 juniors, and 7 seniors. Six students were female; five were minority students. Knowledge2Work’s main ambition for the 2001-2002 academic year focused on growing the program both in numbers of students participating and the number of clients served. Knowledge2Work completed projects for 27 local non-profit organizations and 11 for- profit organizations throughout the East Coast. Revenues grew to more than $33,000 for the year, with more than $22,000 of this earned during the second half of the year. In addition, the program provided approximately $4800 in pro bono services and $1700 in discounted services during the year. 29 Because the program grew to a size that will be the benchmark for the next several years, the program’s focus in the next several years will be less on growth and more on improving the experience for the students and the quality of the services provided to clients. For the 2002-2003 academic year, Knowledge2Work will focus on involving students more in leadership roles and in the administration of program operations. Allowing students to assume more responsibilities will help them develop valuable business experience while meeting their clients’ needs through high quality technology solutions. Communications During 2001-2002, Information Systems has continued its efforts to identify and implement the most effective strategies for ensuring that faculty, staff, and students have access to accurate and timely information concerning computing and telecommunica- tions services and to channels for expressing concerns or questions about IS services. IS has continued to rely on email and voice mail distribution for messages concerning system downtime and other significant computing developments, while using WIN announcements, fliers, and memos in cases of less urgency. Every effort is made to target messages to appropriate audiences based both on the urgency and the impact of the issue. To increase awareness concerning Information Systems services, Information Systems has employed several strategies. Information Systems continues to issue periodic open letters highlighting significant issues of concern to faculty and staff; these letters are distributed to all academic and administrative department heads via email and are available to all faculty and staff through the WIN announcements board. In addition, the Technology Outreach staff work closely with Project Management teams to develop and implement communications plans related to IS projects. To ensure that student perspectives and concerns help shape IS policies, the Outreach group initiated the creation of a Student Technology Council in spring 2002. This group, comprised of volunteer undergraduate representatives, meets on a monthly basis to discuss significant technology issues or to learn about and comment upon prospective or existing technologies on the campus. In the coming year, Information Systems will work with members of the Student Technology Council to refine this group's role, thus ensuring that it provides maximum value to Information Systems, the student representatives, and the student body as a whole. To assist new employees of the University in familiarizing themselves with campus technology services, the Technology Outreach group developed a technology orientation presentation and brochure as part of Human Resources' new employee orientation. In addition, this group developed and delivered training to familiarize Reynolda House employees with the Wake Forest technology environment; this model could be used for other new employees in other areas of the University. To ensure accurate and relevant information through the Information Systems web site, the communications group initiated a revision to the departmental web site in late spring 30 2002. During the summer of 2002, the site will be reorganized, additional IS staff will be trained in maintaining individual pages within the site, and the content and organization of the site will be evaluated to help improve the usefulness of the IS web site for faculty, staff, students, parents, and others who visit the site to learn about technology at Wake Forest. In the coming year, Outreach staff will continue evaluating IS communications efforts to enhance the information shared between IS and the campus. In addition, Outreach staff will seek to work with other University offices in raising awareness about all Information Systems services. Community Collaboratives During 2001-2002, the Technology Outreach staff has continued to support Information Systems’ outreach to the community. Highlights of these activities follow. WinstonNet Initiative With the addition of a program administrator in December 2001, the Technology Outreach office assumed responsibility for the operational tasks of WinstonNet, a non- profit community outreach endeavor with the goal of “bridging the digital divide” that currently exists in the Winston-Salem and Forsyth County communities. Hosted by the Idealliance, WinstonNet serves as a partnership between many of the major academic, social, and corporate institutions in Winston-Salem. Chief Information Officer Jay Dominick serves as vice chair and continues to lead the development and promotion of WinstonNet. With such strong backing and support, this partnership hopes to spawn a new era in information technology while strengthening and connecting the Winston- Salem community. By reaching out primarily to non-profit agencies and underserved populations, WinstonNet seeks to set the standard for ubiquitous computing. Connecting the community through an extensive collection of shared resources, WinstonNet will offer community databases and other valuable common tools to assist Winston-Salem residents in creating a strong community network and building sound relationships. Striving to be a prototype for the nation, WinstonNet is employing cutting edge technology to accomplish these goals. Over the past year, thirteen non-profit agencies have adopted WinstonNet technologies. They include: ABCD, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Catholic Social Services, Children’s Center, Downtown Middle School, Enrichment Center, Experiment in Self-Reliance, Family Services, Project HOPE, St. Leo’s Catholic School, Salvation Army, Second Harvest Food Bank, United Way of Forsyth County, and Youth Opportunities. Training and training support for K12 educators In addition to the work conducted through the Arthur Vining Davis STARS project, the Technology Outreach group works closely with the Administration team in managing Information Systems’ relationship with the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools. During the past year, Technology Outreach staff coordinated ThinkPad training and distribution for approximately 600 Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools teachers who received refurbished ThinkPads as part of the contractual agreement between Wake 31 Forest and the school system. In addition, customized training programs are developed and executed by the Technology Outreach team on an as-needed basis for individual schools. University Call Center In December 2001, the Technology Outreach team assumed responsibility for a newly created University Call Center. Currently, the Call Center includes 3 full-time and 2 part- time staff who provide support for Financial and Accounting Services, Telecommunications administration, and University switchboard operations. During the last half of FY 2002, Call Center efforts focused on integration of staff, implementation of the online telecommunications billing system, cross-training, and workflow documentation. In the coming year, the goal will be to refine the strategic goals for the Call Center to identify the configuration that will best enhance its benefit to students, faculty, staff, parents, and friends in interacting with the University. Project Management………………………………………… The Project Management Office (PMO) team continued its efforts to support and improve the competency and services in all its IS project management endeavors. Information Systems recognizes that successful implementation and on-going development of the Project Management Office (PMO) continues to require an approach that evolves over time to serve the needs of the Wake Forest community as well as the department. This strategy has worked well and has produced significant results. Significant accomplishments during FY 2002 included the following: 1. Refining the methods and practices of project management within Information Systems. 2. Developing a process for post project reviews. 3. Providing project training and mentoring to Information Systems staff with project management responsibilities. 4. Providing project management and consulting services for Information Systems project implementations. Refining project management practices within IS The Project Management Office has focused on three phases in the project management process: project initiation, project planning, and project closeout. Project initiation plays a critical role in ensuring a clear understanding and agreement on the results that a project is expected to deliver. Prior to initiating a project, the PMO now requires completion of a business concept document for all potential IS projects. This document, created through initial meetings with customers and IS staff, delineates the scope of the project and the readiness of the client to execute the project. Once the document is completed and approved by the customer and IS staff, it is then presented to 32 the IS Leadership Committee, which consists of the Chief Information Officer, Assistant CIO, and directors from each area. Based on customer input, the Leadership Committee reviews the project requirements; assesses the priority; determines the disposition of the project; and allocates appropriate technical and business resources to the project. This process has helped IS anticipate and avoid difficulties in subsequent phases of projects. Because project planning is critical to the success of any project, the PMO has created standard templates that provide the project manager and project team with a framework for the planning phase of the project. These templates include communication plans, change control process, managerial and technical schedules, budget, and risk analysis. These documents are available to all project teams and used throughout the department in establishing a solid structure in the overall planning of each project. A project binder is also created for each newly accepted project and delivered to the project manager. Before moving into the execution of the plan, the project manager obtains sign-off from his/her director that the planning is complete. This process helps ensure that IS and the customer agree on all requirements and understand the process for modifying the project plan if necessary. Project closeout, which includes the transfer of operational activities associated with the project from the project team to functional teams, is often the most challenging aspect of project management. In an effort to refine the execution of this phase of project management within IS, the PMO has developed an official sign-off process to assist the project team in transitioning day-to-day support and maintenance responsibilities associated with the new applications or processes to the appropriate functional areas within Information Systems. Post Project Review Process Post project reviews provide a means to evaluate the overall results of a project as well as specific deliverables within the phases of the project. In March 2002, the PMO established a process whereby all completed IS projects are formally reviewed. The process includes a written comprehensive report from the project manager. Surveys are completed by the customer, executive management, vendors (if applicable) and all project team members. From this information an executive summary is prepared and a meeting is scheduled to review the results with the project teams and management. The results of these evaluations assist in enhancing project management and help to: • Validate and refine project management standards and guidelines for use with future projects. • Provide performance feedback to individual project managers and teams. • Highlight strengths and identify areas for improvement in regard to project activities and the performance of the functional and/or project organizations. • Provide a record of lessons learned for future projects. • Identify innovative techniques that enhance project success and customer satisfaction. 33 Ten post project reviews have been conducted thus far. These reviews have been very insightful and provided project managers and teams with information to incorporate into future endeavors. Project training and mentoring During FY 2002, the PMO increasingly recognized training needs associated with project management. Some of these needs arose from IS staff who were responsible for managing projects. Others arose as a result of project implementations; many projects changed business processes and thus created a training need among those individuals who would be using the service or application produced by the project. Consequently, the PMO was heavily involved in the development and delivery of training for several major projects, the including online payroll, call accounting, and Windows XP migration projects. Over 800 end-users were trained in the use of these new technologies. To address the need for training on project management processes, the PMO conducted project management training for approximately 100 staff members during fall 2001. Throughout the year, the PMO has also offered individual mentoring services to new project managers. These sessions familiarized the project manager with the project management process, provided assistance in completing project initiation documents, and provided guidance in the planning phase of their project. The PMO also offered a monthly 1-hour project management training workshops to provide project management training to interested IS staff. The sessions, led by IBM’s Wake Forest consultant – a certified project manager – covered a variety of project management subjects. Because of time demands, the PMO will sponsor these sessions on a quarterly basis in the coming year. The PMO will also continue to research further training opportunities in project management to address needs expressed by IS staff. Beyond this, the PMO has encouraged IS staff to take an active interest in thinking about new technologies and best practices and their application within the Wake Forest environment. In fall 2002, the PMO – working with the Chief Information Officer – implemented monthly “Brainstorming Sessions” to facilitate an exchange of ideas on challenges and opportunities facing Information Systems and the University. These monthly lunch meetings, which have involved IS staff as well as students, faculty, and other University staff, have proven highly effective in stimulating discussion about technology deployment at Wake Forest. Project Management and Consulting Services In August 2001, the PMO was assigned its first major project: the call accounting project. This project marked Information Systems’ first experience with an application service provider (ASP) model for telecommunications billing. The project, which affected every department across campus, was restricted by a very limited implementation timeframe. Despite a number of obstacles, the project team delivered the first online bill to Wake Forest telephone customers in January 2002. 34 The PMO is currently involved in several other projects, including the evaluation of a remote Internet service provider as a possible replacement for the AT&T Global Network service currently in use. Through the Wake Forest’s IBM consultant, the PMO has also been involved in a variety of projects, including the credit-to-hours project, which was completed in summer 2001. This project, which moved the Undergraduate College from a credit to semester-hours system, was delivered on-time, within project scope and under budget. The consultant is now involved with new e-books project, which provides text books on line. The pilot is scheduled for fall 2002 and will involve a limited number of academic departments. Because electronic commerce (E-commerce) is a priority for many departments, the PMO directed a campus-wide survey to assess credit card and Deacon OneCard transactions in University offices and to perform a benchmarking study of other universities’ e-commerce strategies. A comprehensive report on this project was presented to executive management both in IS and other administrative departments in May 2002. Having begun in September 2000, the Project Management Office has worked to ensure the adoption of project management methods and practices within IS and continues to refine its processes to provide value to customers. PMO staff continue to pursue professional certification through the Project Management Institute (PMI) and George Washington University. Overall, these efforts have created greater awareness within Information Systems on how to deliver successful projects and the importance of developing good communications with the customer and within IS. This year, all accepted projects finished on time and within budget and met the project scope requirements. Research & Development………………………………… As part of Information Systems’ efforts to sustain Wake Forest’s leadership in the use of educational technology, the Research and Development team was created in January 2001. The mission of this team is threefold: 1. To support advanced uses of information technology in teaching and academic communications. This includes developing tools and techniques required to facilitate the use of information technology by faculty and to develop new structures and templates that facilitate teaching and learning. 2. To research new technologies that have potential strategic benefit to the University in maintaining its position as a leader among liberal arts institutions in the effective use of information technology. 3. To manage the successful integration of personal computing hardware and software in support of the University computing initiative. Since its creation, the R&D team has undertaken activities to support all three objectives. 35 Technology in Teaching and Academic Communications The R&D team has worked extensively with new devices such as hand-held computers to determine their capabilities and potential benefits in both academic and non-academic areas. To date, the team has focused its academic-use research on using hand-held computers with wireless Internet connectivity to enhance the teaching and learning experience. During the 2001-2002 academic year, these efforts have revolved around the Hewlett-Packard iPAQ, a PocketPC-based handheld computing device. With a StrongArm 207 MHz processor and 32 MB RAM, this device has created new possibilities for ultra-portable computing at Wake Forest. One of the most promising and exciting accomplishments during the year was the launching of the PocketClassroom software, developed by the R&D team for use with PocketPC devices. PocketClassroom’s features include the capability to set up a web server on a PocketPC equipped with a wireless card, which allows an instructor to start and stop the web server, accept students’ electronic questions and feedback during class, and collect student opinions using a meter approach that provides continuous graphic feedback on the PocketPC. PocketClassroom also allows an instructor to use the PocketPC to control PowerPoint presentations remotely. Although other software packages provide either presentation or feedback, PocketClassroom is unique in combining these two features, giving the instructor freedom to move around the room rather than being tethered to a desk or podium. Because it also gives the instructor complete control over the web server on the PocketPC without assistance from a server administrator, it provides an easy means of putting documents on a web server for students. With assistance from a project team including other IS staff, the R&D team conducted pilot projects with iPAQs in two academic departments during the year. A fall pilot with a Physics class provided iPAQs and wireless cards to an instructor and 46 students. The instructor used the PocketClassroom software to manage his PowerPoint slides and to collect instant, reliable, aggregated data on students’ comprehension of the class material. The spring pilot issued iPAQs to students, instructors, and a lab assistant in a French class. The students used the iPAQs to access the instructor’s web pages containing lab exercises. Because another section of this course used ThinkPads instead of iPAQs for the lab activities, this pilot provided IS staff and the instructors the opportunity to compare the impact of these different technologies on the classroom activities. Both pilots generated many positive comments from instructors and students, while also revealing the limitations and challenges of devices with smaller screens. With additional faculty members eager to participate in future pilots, the R&D team is planning for additional pilot projects in fall 2002. The R&D team is busy adding a new “concept test” feature to the PocketClassroom software that will enhance its usefulness in the sciences. The R&D team is also investigating ways to enable faculty members to create multimedia presentations that students may view during or outside of class. The team has worked directly with several faculty members to determine requirements and has identified the various types of presentations that might be desired. This research seeks to create software tools where needed, acquire equipment that faculty members can borrow, and provide instructions and/or staff assistance for using these resources. The underlying philosophy in creating these capabilities is that faculty members should not have to 36 become technology experts in order to use multimedia tools that can enhance learning for their students. Supporting New Technologies The Research and Development team actively seeks ways to make new technologies highly visible and useful on the University campus. In collaboration with Information Systems’ Operations teams, Research and Development implemented two projects to accomplish this goal. In support of the second part of the R&D mission statement, the team packaged the PocketClassroom software for distribution and marketing to the higher education community. The software was introduced to national audiences at two conferences: the Syllabus Conference in Santa Monica in July of 2001, and the Educause Conference in Indianapolis in October of 2001. Working with a production company in Winston-Salem, the Information Systems staff produced a CD describing the University’s technology initiatives and the PocketClassroom software. More than 200 of these CDs were distributed at the Educause Conference. The CD provides the link to the PocketClassroom web pages, developed by the R&D team, at http://pocketclassroom.wfu.edu. From this site, educators can download the software free of charge. As of June 30, 2002, more than 40 institutions from around the world had done so. In addition, the team has received requests from a local bank and from a city government in Florida for permission to use the software, which they discovered through Web searches, in their employee training classes. At a national PocketPC conference in Philadelphia in May of 2002, a speaker from Microsoft urged the audience to visit the Wake Forest web site to look at the technology activities taking place here. Such publicity continues to boost the University’s reputation as a leader and innovator in technology. Integrating personal computing software and hardware Each year the R&D team works in collaboration with IBM, the Information Systems staff, the Vice President for Finance and Administration, and the Committee on Information Technology to recommend the best configuration of the portable computer for distribution to faculty, staff, and first- and third-year students. In addition, the R&D team is responsible for developing a standard software image that will be installed on these machines. Software The R&D team builds and oversees testing of the standard software set (referred to as the standard load) that is installed on every computer before distribution to students, faculty, and staff. This year, the task was particularly challenging because of the move from the Windows 98 operating system and Office 2000 products to the Windows XP operating system and Office XP products. The team spent many months training, testing, and developing new scripts and tools to work with Windows XP and the Windows 2000 server infrastructure being implemented by the Systems Support staff. In addition, the team worked with the Instructional Technology Group and a group of faculty volunteers to test XP compatability on software used by individual academic departments. 37 The standard software load for 2002-2003 features the programs from last year's standard load but with many upgrades, including Norton AntiVirus Corporate Edition, Macromedia Dreamweaver 4, Netscape Communicator 4.77, and SPSS 10.1. It also includes a full selection of e-book readers including Adobe E-book Reader, Microsoft Reader, and NetLibrary E-book Reader. The standard software load provides all students a full set of the best academic tools available, including word processing with foreign language capability, statistical analysis, mathematical graphing, virus protection, and web page editing. Hardware The ThinkPad A30, which was selected as the standard ThinkPad for the 2002-2003 year, offers a Pentium III 1.13 GHz processor, a 40% improvement over last year’s A21m model, and an installed hard drive of 30 GB, a 50% improvement over the A21m. In addition, the A30 is outfitted with 384 MB of RAM, rather than the 192 MB found on the A21m. The A21m has a 15" high-resolution active matrix screen, powered by 16 MB of video RAM, which allows for the highest resolution (1024 x 768) at 32-bit full color. This means that any image is displayed true to its color and detail with no distortion. The A30 also includes the following features: a 56Kbps modem, 2 USB ports, infrared port, S-video port, 100 MB Ethernet PC port, and a three-hour lithium-ion battery. The most exciting feature found on the A30, however, is a combination DVD/CD-RW drive. This allows users to copy data to CDs – providing an easy and immediate way to back up user data and other files – and to play DVDs. The Hewlett-Packard 940C was selected as the inkjet printer for the 2002-03 academic year. With the move to this more substantial printer, students will retain the same printer throughout their undergraduate career. Students in the class of 2004 and 2005 – who will have two-year old Lexmark inkjet printers as rising juniors – will receive new HP printers as part of the junior ThinkPad exchange process. All other students will retain the HP printer issued to them upon enrollment throughout their undergraduate years. The R&D team is continuing its tests of 11 MB wireless network adapters as a potential replacement for the current 2 MB adapters. This technology, from Symbol Technologies, allows mobile use of ThinkPads and iPAQs by providing network access from wireless zones in locations throughout the campus. Students continue to indicate the technology provided to them at Wake Forest has high value. They believe that it not only enhances their educational experience while they are here but also gives them an advantage in the job market upon graduation because of the name recognition and national attention that the University’s technology initiative has attracted. The Research and Development team is dedicated to maintaining Wake Forest’s leadership among liberal arts institutions and thus increasing the value of a degree from Wake Forest University for our students. 38 Public Relations As more educational institutions follow Wake Forest’s lead in implementing technology initiatives, the focus of media coverage has evolved in recent years beyond the ThinkPad. Increasingly, technology-related news stories featuring or referencing Wake Forest concentrate on the unique approaches that Wake Forest is taking to apply technologies in education. The University’s planning and implementation of the technology initiative was featured in College Planning and Management as well as the Chronicle of Higher Education. Wake Forest’s deployment of handheld computing generated a feature article in Internet Week, while the University’s wireless initiatives were featured in The Wi-Fi Experience (QUE, 2001). Various publications including The Chronicle of Higher Education, InternetWeek.com, Business Week, and the Boston Globe continued to acknowledge Wake Forest’s pioneering efforts in ubiquitous computing. During the year, Information Systems staff also made presentations to representatives from other institutions in a variety of national and international conferences, including Educause, IBM’s ThinkTank, and the Syllabus conference. Topics covered in these sessions included PocketClassroom, student technology programs, and community outreach initiatives. Significant Accomplishments Information Systems set and achieved many ambitious goals over the past fiscal year. These accomplishments included receiving major contributions for replicating the STARS program, launching other initiatives, and receiving national recognition for its technology initiatives. Contributions…………………………………………………………………… In the past year, Information Systems has received funding from a variety of sources. These funds have supported outreach initiatives, training, and infrastructure needs of Information Systems. The table which follows outlines contributions received or used by Information Systems in FY 2001-2002. 39 Information Systems Related Contributions, FY 2001-2002 Given By Amount Notes Carter Foundation $ 1,000 Funds to support the STARS program Compaq/New HP $ 2,500 Goods to support handheld pilots Fund to support summer Enterasys $ 14,000 networking internships Goods and services to promote Film House $ 1,800 PocketClassroom IBM $ 1,500 Funds for IS parents’ reception Funds to further develop e-business IBM $ 668,000 research and course offerings Krispy Kreme $ 175 Goods for ThinkPad distribution activities Doughnuts Funds to support ThinkPad Lexmark $ 2,000 distribution activities Commitment of funds for web Lilly Foundation $ 18,000 development by Knowledge2Work for ProHumanitate Center Funds to support ThinkPad Symbol Technologies $ 1,050 distribution activities Symbol Technologies $ 3,000 Goods for research and development Total $ 713,025 Awards & Achievements…………………………………………………… Over the past year, Information Systems has been recognized in a variety of ways for its leadership in educational technology. The Hardware Technical Support Center (described on page 14 of this report) was recognized by IBM as an IBM Premier Service Center in July 2001, placing it among the top 5 percent of all IBM service centers for quality of service. Yahoo! Internet Life magazine again cited Wake Forest in its Most Wired Campuses edition, ranking Wake Forest #20 among research universities and #1 for its web portal. 40 Future Plans The coming fiscal year will present Information Systems with both challenge and opportunity. During the upcoming year, we must reach a decision about replacing the hardware that supports our administrative computing system. The vendor, Hewlett - Packard, has announced that support for the venerable HP3000 will end in October of 2006. Our challenge is to find a responsible path for migrating the administrative computing software to a new platform. This is a significant task considering that the existing system supports virtually all of the business operations of the University. We will begin exploring our options in early September with a view to launching a project in FY 2003. As we move into the eighth year of our IBM contract, we continue to explore what the new generation of supermobile computing will look like. Our Research and Development team is actively looking at ways to combine smaller devices with wireless networking to enhance the learning process. We successfully established an early leadership position in the use of supermobile computing in higher education through our PocketClassroom project and our extensive research efforts. During the upcoming year, these applications will be enhanced and we will experiment with new devices, such as Tablet PCs, IBM’s MetaPad, and other devices from Palm, Compaq, and Handspring. During the coming year, we will also begin evaluating electronic textbooks as a tool to support learning on campus. We will be deploying electronic textbooks to over 100 students during the year in the Health and Exercise Science program. Along with the deployment is a rigorous study to evaluate the practical and cognitive impact of the technology. Efforts such as this continue to keep Wake Forest at the forefront of new and potentially significant trends in the use of technology on campus. We will also continue to expand the wireless network on campus to include more locations and more users. Current plans call for upgrading the existing wireless network from 2 MB per second to newer technologies which will support in excess of 50 MB per second. Initial implementation and testing will take place in the late fall and early spring. A major initiative for Information Systems is to deploy our first generation of a grid- based supercomputer on campus. Working in conjunction with the Medical School and the Winston-Salem SuperComputing Committee , we will deploy our first small, scale super computer on campus during fall 2002. This will be closely coordinated with statewide efforts to bring grid computing in support of the biological sciences to North Carolina. As always, our challenge for the future is to provide the world-class level of service and support that Wake Forest expects. It is our unflinching goal to provide the best information technology environment in higher education. We will continue to strive to do so. For further information: Any questions concerning this document or any of the activities described herein may be addressed to Jay Dominick at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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