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Message from the CIO

This fall, ITS is focusing on improving technology support, especially for instruction. The Center for Instructional Technology (CIT) has rolled out a new faculty consulting service.  Faculty are invited to contact CIT to schedule a personal one-on-one consultation in the faculty member’s office.  The purpose of the initiative is to have an instructional technology staff member meet with a faculty member and work with them on their own computer to answer any questions they may have.  Many times faculty have a few questions that could really improve their productivity or classroom teaching but are not worth their time to attend an entire workshop on the topic.  These meetings are available for scheduling on Wednesdays or Thursdays between 9am and 5pm. Other days can be worked in as well.  See the article in this newsletter for more details.  Another initiative is the new Blackboard Help Desk that augments the Eastern Help Desk by providing 24×7 support for password resets.

Other improvements this fall include the completion of the voice and data campus network. Due to the improved reliability of this fully redundant high-speed network and a more featured (and less expensive) telephone system, the Fall 2017 semester began with fewer technical outages than last fall and a generally faster network. In addition, over 1,000 wireless access points are now available across campus.

Finally, the Banner team is busy moving the Eastern instance of Banner to an upgraded version wholly in the cloud. Once completed, Eastern users of Banner will have increased functionality along with improved availability and reliability of a cloud-based system that Eastern could not afford to create in the previous environment.

As is the case with the rest of the campus and the State System, ITS is coping with staff positions frozen by the Board of Regents System Office due to the State budget impasse. Fortunately, with the president’s strong support, three of six frozen ITS positions were granted exceptions to the freeze and are in the process of being filled.  Despite the staffing challenges, ITS has been working to refocus its services to better serve the core instructional mission of the university.

Garrett Bozylinsky
Chief Information Officer

 

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ITS has lost some key staff in the past few months.  Brenda Whalen has moved permanently to the BOR system office in Hartford to head up the system-wide implementation of the Banner move to the cloud for the universities.  In her place I have promoted Deb Hunt to Director of Enterprise Applications to head up the ITS information Systems Application group.

I have created two new positions from the Whalen vacancy.  One will be in the Center for Instructional Technology to improve our support of faculty use of technology for student learning.  The other will support wireless and Voice Over IP (VOIP) in Network Services.  Both these positions will be filled as soon as the hiring freeze ends.

Another position that will be filled after the hiring freeze is a replacement for the departure of Ryan Allard who provided desktop computer support.

Finally, a search is underway to replace Tim Sime who supported both wireless and VOIP in Network Services.  Now that the VOIP telephone system is being turned over to Eastern from the vendor, we need this position and the one above to support both telephones and the expansion of campus wireless.

In addition to these changes, Kevin Gill will focus on desktop computing support and provide additional counsel to the CIO with Brenda’s departure as well take the lead on thin client computing, and the ITS role in the new system-wide inventory system.

In order to free up some of Kevin’s time for these new duties, Steve Nelson will head up the ITS Help Desk, Center for Instructional Technology (CIT), and the Webb Hall support group.

I have made these changes to make the best use of remaining ITS personnel resources, and position ITS to improve support to faculty and students.

Garry Bozylinsky

Chief Information Officer

 

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Message from the CIO



This is the first issue of a periodic newsletter I plan to send to the Eastern community to communicate technology information that I think would be of interest, and to seek feedback as well as suggestions for improving Information Technology Services (ITS) and technology at Eastern.  My design for the newsletter is for it to be dynamic and current, communicating notifications and articles as they become relevant at any time of the year. It will therefore be published on an irregular basis as technology changes and issues necessitate. Your input is very important to me.  If you have any comments, suggestions or questions, please email them directly to me at bozylinskyg@easternct.edu.  This issue is somewhat long because it catches up with what’s been happening for the past several months.  There has been a lot of hard work by a lot of staff (both in and out of ITS) to implement an aggressive plan to upgrade existing, as well as deploy, new technology.

In the five months I’ve been at Eastern, I have grown to appreciate the Eastern community and its accomplishments due to the dedication of so many people leading directly to our success as recognized in many arenas ranging from the US News and World Report rankings to workplace accolades and our strong enrollment numbers.  ITS is dedicated to playing a strong role supporting the community with technology solutions to assist in meeting the challenging goals Eastern has established for itself.  I look forward to working with the Eastern community to improve our use of technology to advance the institution and continue to enhance Eastern’s reputation and success.

Garry Bozylinsky
Chief Information Officer