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Technology Services: From the CIO

June, 2017 CIO Update »

Earlier this month the Technology Services team, along with our Administration colleagues in Human Resources, Facilities Management, Police, Parking & Transportation, and Safety & Risk Management gathered to celebrate our accomplishments and to recognize those who this year exemplified great service.  I would like to thank Technology Services’ own Eliza Weeks and Rob Toback for participating on the committee that put on this great event (and  Eliza was a most excellent emcee). I would also like to recognize Amber Shaffer for her award for Customer Service, Dan Thomas for his Ambassador award, and James Daniels, for being part of the Teamwork award for the implementation of T2.  Congratulations also to the many TS team members who were nominated fro awards. More information on this event and the awards given can be found here

This event is a small part of our effort in the Division of Administration to create a “healthy, high-performance culture” in order to ensure that VCU is a great place to work and that we provide excellent service to the VCU community.  To this end, two surveys were conducted in the Spring:  a customer satisfaction survey and an employee engagement survey.  In the coming months, we will be sharing the results of those surveys along with preliminary plans to address findings.  We will also be seeking input on those plans.  I look forward to working with everyone to continue our progress. This work will also integrate with the Great Place: HR Redesign initiative as we begin to implement improved processes and policies.

On the Horizon

With Summer in full swing, we begin preparations for the start of the new academic year.  This includes completing critical infrastructure upgrades, repairing and replacing equipment in residence halls and classrooms.

We are also working on several exciting new initiatives:

  • We are executing an agreement for Infrastructure as a Service (cloud hosting) beginning with authentication (CAS, Shibboleth, LDAP) and later Web Hosting.
  • We also will be retiring our current version of VCU Mobile and replacing it with a more modern and customized version for employees and students.
  • We will announce later this summer our new Identity Management System and will share our project plan for implementation.
  • Our Web Content management system is getting a facelift as we move from version 7 to version 8 (presentation on July 6th from 2:00 – 4:00 pm, room 303 Cabell Library).
  • We will publish a new Technology Services System Status site with many new features and functions.

As summer progresses, I will provide more information about these and other initiatives underway to improve and enhance VCU’s use of technology. I hope everyone enjoys the 4th of July holiday and has the opportunity to take some much deserved time off this summer!



May, 2017 CIO Update »

As we successfully close another academic year and begin to close another fiscal year, the Technology Services team is now beginning to perform various maintenance and upgrade tasks to multiple systems and infrastructures as well as plan for the fall.  Over the summer months I will highlight some of those efforts.  For this month's entry, I will co . . .

April, 2017 CIO Update »

For the past week or so, I think I've been living in Seattle. However, the sun has made an appearance today and I believe that all of the April showers will in fact lead to May flowers.  For this month's update, I would like to highlight two significant changes being driven by Microsoft and Google. Windows 10 & Classrooms This summer the Labs . . .

March, 2017 CIO Update »

It is definitely March, and I have a busted bracket and the start of some spring allergies to prove it.  Earlier this month I had the opportunity to attend another excellent annual ACCS (Association of Collegiate Computing Services of Virginia) conference in Portsmouth.  It was great to see so many VCU staff benefiting from the professional develop . . .

February, 2017 CIO Update »

Compromise of data and IT systems through the use of stolen credentials continues to be one of the top cyber threats faced by our University. A compromise may not only place University information at risk, but can also jeopardize your personal information that is protected by these credentials.  In order to reduce the risk associated with stolen creden . . .

January, 2017 CIO Update »

As the New Year comes into full swing, Educause (the primary professional organization for Higher Education IT) has released its Top 10 Issues list for the coming year.  This year's list and associated materials are particularly helpful in contextualizing our priorities and initiatives in Technology Services with trends across higher education, and the . . .

December, 2016 CIO Update »

As we wind down the year 2016, please accept my best wishes for a safe and joyful holiday season and a wonderful 2017!  For this month's update, I thought I would share information about a project being completed over the break as well as mention a change we'll see in January. Border Router Replacement/Upgrade The border routers that connect VCU . . .

November, 2016 CIO Update »

Fall is in the air, and winter is definitely approaching.  As we prepare for Winter Closing and the new year, I'd like to highlight a couple of initiatives as well as wish everyone a great Thanksgiving. VoiceThread VoiceThread, which replaced Blackboard Voice Tools, bridges the gap between real-time discussions and standard video lectures or onl . . .

October, 2016 CIO Blog »

It is definitely Fall in Richmond with beautiful weather, folks on Hanover getting ready for Halloween, and all of us getting our jackets out again.  Fall is my favorite season, and this year even more so since my beloved Cubs are playing in the World Series (though they are down a game to Cleveland).  A highlight of the season for me is the Technolog . . .

September, 2016 CIO Update »

With the school year in full swing, I thought it might be useful to share with everyone some information put together by Scott Davis, our Director for Application Services, in collaboration with colleagues in Information Security and Technology Support Services.  The below represents a good set of guidelines to securing your home computing resources, a . . .

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We are responsible for implementing and supporting the technology used around campus, such as the network, phones, enhanced classrooms, and Internet-based systems including myVCU, Blackboard, email, and more.

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