CTO Updates February 2015

I am pleased to share with the WMU community the following technology related news and updates.  Please let me know if you have any questions, or comments as I would love to hear from you. I can be reached at tom.wolf@wmich.edu or (269) 387-3838. Go WMU! Go Broncos!

Did you know: there are 1,096 servers in the Office of Information Technology computing center, 65% of which are virtualized?

Eduroam: eduroam is now live at WMU! This wireless service allows people from eduroam participating institutions to log into the WMU eduroam wireless network using their home institution's login credentials. Conversely, WMU students, faculty and staff can now use eduroam wireless networks when they visit other eduroam compatible organizations. More information.

RAVE update: WMU's RAVE emergency alert system was recently customized so that it can also provide emergency alert services to the WMU regional campuses. If you wish to be added to the alert network, you may do so in the WMU Alert Registration channel in GoWMU.

Symantec for Android: The Office of Information Technology security team has deployed a beta version of Symantec for Android. We expect to complete beta testing by the end of March and hope to make this new service available to all faculty and staff before the end of the spring semester. It will be available in the Software Downloads channel in GoWMU and an announcement will be made when it is available.

Office of Information Technology reorganization: The higher education IT industry has changed significantly in recent years with Internet-based cloud services being at the core of much of the technology change that has taken place. The importance of technology related security has also never been higher, as evidenced by the fact that more malware was written in 2014 than in all previous years combined. Communication tools have become critical to the success of most business functions. Demand for technology consulting and project management has never been greater. Most research projects rely heavily on technology resources. Online learning, while barely on the radar of most schools ten years ago, is now considered both necessary and strategic. These are but a few of the changes that are impacting the higher education IT industry.

Industry changes, in combination with WMU's adoption of a campus-wide strategic plan, provided the impetus for organizational change within the Office of Information Technology. The catalyst for organization change became the retirement of IT's long-standing Senior Director of Voice, Video and data. Organizational changes are scheduled to take place in the coming months and are intended to:

  1. More closely align IT services to the University's strategic plan.
  2. Help solidify IT's position as technology leaders on campus.
  3. Improve collaboration and governance relationships between IT and the campus community.
  4. Simplify the delivery of technology solutions.
  5. Position IT to more quickly adapt to the regularly changing technology landscape.
  6.  Realize efficiencies through consolidation/elimination of redundancy.

The new structure is focused on research, security, identity management, educational technology services, support services, project management, applications, communications and collaboration while at the same time leveraging the strengths of core utility services such as systems, networking and operations. The reorganization will lay the groundwork for future improvements while at the same time place a priority on continuity of existing services.

If you have any questions or concerns about the pending IT reorganization, please do not hesitate to contact Tom Wolf at (269) 387-3838 or tom.wolf@wmich.edu.