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Leveraging Cloud Technologies To Yield Positive Results

By Jerome P. DeSanto, VP- Planning & CIO, The University of Scranton

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Jerome P. DeSanto, VP- Planning & CIO, The University of Scranton

Innovative Ways To Foster Growth Within Their Organizations
Recruiting and leading outstanding professionals is key to this. Talent management to include a strong professional development program, career paths, and succession plans are also essential. Most IT operations in higher education are cash starved, so many efforts are now focusing on doing more with less.Leveraging virtualization and cloud technologies can aid in this goal. It’s also crucial that CIO’s can effectively communicate the value of IT to the institution laying out ways that IT can be a difference maker. It’s equally important that CIO’s educate their IT staff about the higher education industry in which they work so that innovation can be stimulated and nurtured and directed in the right direction.

Role Of Big Data In The Education Space
As competition for students intensifies higher education institutions are going to seek out ways of gaining a competitive edge. The treasure trove of information stored in University databases is largely untapped today. Higher education needs to take a page out of Google’s or Amazon’s books to conceptualize and implement ways to mine this data to better understand customer needs, preferences, and behaviors. Higher education needs to become more customer-centric with its thinking and leveraging big data is one way to accomplish this goal.

Infrastructure Investment To Counter The Onslaught Of Digital Content And Mobile Devices
It’s obvious that the network, particularly wireless capabilities, needs to be robust. Wireless standards are continuing to evolve almost as quickly as the utilization on campus is increasing. There is an expectation from our customers (faculty, staff, and students) that the network be capable of handling the traffic and versatility of their mobile devices in the secure, efficient manner without restrictions.

Technology Trends Impacting The Education Sector
The adoption of the cloud for myriad of service offerings is huge in that speed to implementation is dramatically improved and the costs of ownership could be spread out over a long timeframe. Security has improved so that cloud providers are more trusted with institutional data. Business process improvement (BPI) with an eye towards improved customer services/ relationships and greater efficiencies can help the institution save money as well as improve competitiveness.

Technologies That Helped The University Excel Or Keep Pace With The Change
Supporting teaching and learning is core to our purpose. Consequently, helping faculty to advance their pedagogy and teaching methods is a primary imperative. This is accomplished through mediation of learning spaces to include support for emerging trends such as flipping the classroom and lecture capture as two examples. Supporting on-line education through a fully featured learning management system such as Desire to Learn is another important measure that we have taken.