September, 2018 CIO Update
September has been a busy month for VCU and the Technology Services team, and many events have highlighted the vital role played by the technology and services we provide every day. One can now walk through the beautifully restored and reopened Monroe Park (complete with networking technology enabled by our team). Key events were live-streamed and recorded by our Media Support Services team including the 2018 Faculty Convocation and the September 24th appearance and lecture delivered by Bob Woodward.
The importance of the technology we deploy was also on full display during the extreme weather brought on by Hurricane Florence. In preparation for the possible activation of the Siegel Center as a state managed emergency evacuation center, several members of our team very quickly set up network connectivity to aid emergency personnel and provided ongoing support through the event. As tornadoes hit Richmond, the emergency communications systems we have in place were critical in providing timely alerts to the VCU community to shelter in place. Thousands of texts were sent; hundreds of beacons and desktop alerts were activated; and VCU’s network and web infrastructure was critical to ensuring our community members had the information they needed to keep safe.
As the new College of Health professions building nears completion, the Academic Technologies team took a hard hat tour to look at all 17 centrally-supported classrooms. Each classroom is different, and all require high-level, high-tech, complex AV systems and support.
This technology will be critical in delivering the quality of instruction needed to support the nationally ranked programs that will reside there. Technology will also play a role in continuing to support diversity and inclusion at VCU: Technology Services staff are collaborating with the Office of the Vice President of Inclusive Excellence in developing an app to randomly survey faculty and staff to measure university climate on an ongoing basis. Other TS team members are working with the Office of Capital Assets and Real Estate to leverage our imaging and workflow systems to automate space requests. Projects such as this demonstrates the value our work has in delivering process improvement and increased efficiency to everyday business at VCU.
One other piece of exciting and related news: Virginia Commonwealth University won a Governor’s Technology Award at the Commonwealth of Virginia’s COVITS Conference for our eSignatures project. Congratulations go to Barry Lanneau for leading this project and to the many team members in TS and the functional areas who contributed to its success.
As always, thanks to my teammates in Technology Services and to our colleagues across both campuses for making VCU a great place!