Information Technology Council Meeting

May 12, 2006

 

Present:†††††††††† Jan Fox, Dennis Prisk, Terri Tomblin-Byrd, Matt Christian, Herb Karlet, Tom Hankins, Arnold Miller, Gary Anderson, Ben Sandy, Don Combs, Michael McCarthy, Monica Brooks, David Johnson, Yanzhi Wu

 

Review of Minutes:††† Approved as amended

 

Jan

Fox:†††††††††††††††† We had the WVNET Policy Board Meeting yesterday. There are some real issues in the state with the network and this has been brewing for 10 years but I think this is the year when something happens.Because there havenít been real proactive moves on the state network, other people are moving in on the network.Thereís competition between the Governorís Office of Technology and WVNET of who will control the network.Per Arnold: We are now seeing the shared service costs in the range of $20,000 per month for the actual network connection and their shared facility costs are going to be an additional $9,000.Right now Marshall University pays over 1/12 of the entire overhead for the whole state network.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† We have asked for the detail of that bill because we donít know what we are paying for.IS&C produces the bills based on information obtained from WVNET.Another thing that came up at the meeting is that our internet costs are way beyond what they should be.The contract was bid a couple years ago; they were asked to re-bid the contract.We are seeing a fraction of those costs with other companies.

††††††††††††††††††††††† We have put forth an RFP for quotes from other companies.

 

The whole ďWe are MarshallĒ movie becomes an issue for us because the US News Today web report on the movie received 48,000 hits in one day. We have to prepare for those types of possibilities.The movie is set to be released in October.The marketing will happen in August which would impact our students if the network is hit that hard.If anyone has any ideas of how to promote that, let me know.We are working now to avoid a single point of failure.††

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† We have the state IT conference in August.

 

Matt

Christian:†††††††† We just checked enrollments this morning for all of Summer and we have 2,663 enrollments in online courses.That is approaching the number we had for Spring a year ago.We had 1,800 for all of last summer.

 

We have been working really hard to get the Turn it In Power Link to work.We were able to get that functioning this week and Donna and I are doing some testing in the next couple of weeks.Hopefully we can roll that out for the Fall.

 

We are also looking at a Merlot power link.It sets your settings and then pulls in the top learning objects.Itís not as cool as we would like it to be but it opens the dialog of the concepts of learning objects and reusable content in courses.If we could start thinking about learning objects repositories, as we look at K-12 in the state they are beginning to do some of the same sorts of things and this might be a place where we can build a bridge.

 

We are currently looking at a Fall promotional campaign for online courses and we really like doing the faculty promotion, especially to recruit new faculty to teach online.We have come up with a promotion called MU Online Faculty of the Game, so at each of the five home games this season, we are going to select a particular online faculty member and weíre going to do a 20-30 second video on the big screen and they are going to get a guest pass for them and a friend to be in the Presidentís box for the game.It really ties in academics with athletics and gives the faculty out in front of large crowds of people.

 

Don

Combs:††††††††††† One thing that just cleared faculty senate:In my area we will have a new degree program called the Bachelor of Applied Science; similar to the RBA but it requires an AAS to get into it. It will be something that can be delivered around the state.

 

Gary

Anderson:†††††† The Ad Hoc committee that Donna put together is on track with putting multimedia equipment installed in a lot of classrooms for next fall.

 

Jan

Fox:†††††††††††††††† We are doing the wireless maps because the TECI project has increased the wireless.We want the students and the faculty to understand all of the locations.

 

Arnold

Miller:††††††††††††† We are about finished with the first yearís plan for the TECI project and that basically amounted to nearly 80 wireless access points distributed around the campus.It has made a big dent in access space.We hope to be able to continue that next year. There are 5 classrooms that have been selected to get the full TECI outfitting.Per Jan: As part of the North Central visit, we added wireless access in the Commons as well as the Presidentís Dining Hall and the Shockey room in the Student Center.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† The campus re-wire project is pretty much coming to an end.We have almost re-wired all of the buildings; weíve put new fiber in the ground and thatís just about over.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† Something Iíve been remiss on following up on is the creation of SLAs where we do Service Level Agreements when we do special work for people other than the normal things we do on the help desk.Itís time to have those renewed, so Iíll be working on those.

We have SLAs with Medical School, Journalism, Fine Arts, Foundation and Alumni.Some of these need to be more formal.

 

Terri

Byrd:†††††††††††† We have a Banner upgrade scheduled for Memorial Day weekend.

 

With regard to Luminis over the summer, we are waiting the software to be released which should be in the next few weeks.Weíre going to be upgrading the environment of the myMU portal.At the same time we are going to provide a much faster interface for users of the portal.We hope to be finished before the medical school studentís start in the Fall.

 

Arnold

Miller:††††††††††††† We are going to rework the entire email infrastructure for everyone.Effectively since the net result of that email either goes to Luminis for the students or into Exchange for faculty and staff.You, theoretically, wonít see any net result.There some other things that will change; it will change the way we do list serve capabilities so we are trying to work our way through that.We will get the word out to everyone as to when that will be affected.Hopefully we can do conversions of data and everything will work out okay.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† The LAN/WAN bid:We have gone out with an RFP to look an entirely different network infrastructure in the wide area network to move away from the ATM/frame relay network and actually go to metropolitan area network, which is basically an extension of Ethernet out into the wide area network which will gain us significant growth in bandwidth.†† We are attempting to get a full gig link between here and South Charleston so we can begin to implement the South Charleston site, if we choose to do so, as a disaster recovery site/back up site for a lot of our functions.With some other reworking of that we should be able to significantly improve the communications between the various campuses and cut our costs given the threat of the extra $9,000 a month from that network. It will also give us access to more internet service providers to improve back up and recovery capabilities.

We have not awarded the bid yet.Once that is done, there will be parts that we can get into place before the semester starts in the Fall.Even if we donít do that, we will still be upping the band width to the internet.We hope to have a second ISP before fall.

 

In terms of disaster recovery, we brought the medical school component at the Joan C. Edwards site back onto the telephone network last spring.As part of that there is a single point of failure possibility for them in terms of their phone service which includes the fiber run between here and Cabell.We are in the process of purchasing the equipment that will allow them to be a stand alone recovery mode should that fiber be cut.

 

We are also in the process of putting the network up in the Biotech building this summer.

 

We have about 300 computers sitting in the basement that are scheduled to go to the labs and various faculty desk tops to continue the replacement cycle.

 

Jan

Fox:†††††††††††††††† The WV Department of Education/K12 has created a very aggressive Technology Work Plan. They have really looked at their infrastructure issues; and faculty development issues that may financially help Marshall if we can organize ourselves to what they want. Monica is working with education on that issue.They are going to want every single teacher certified with certain technical expertise.If you added up all the requests that they will have it will be $180 to $200 million dollars of requests just for technology.The community doesnít know how much we do to work with K12.

 

Monica

Brooks:††††††††††† Many of you are aware that we are recruiting for an Information Literacy Librarian.This dovetails on the SAILS project which we did two years running where we assessed the information literacy skills of our incoming freshmen and we discovered that we were actually above average but that average was failing.

††††††††††††††††††††††† The committee is moving really fast.We have a hopeful candidate coming in on June 5.She will give a presentation and we will ask her to touch on the information literacy competencies.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† We also lost Cora Teel who decided to retire, effective May 16.We have gotten approval to replace her.She may come back on a part time basis to help ease the new person in since she has possession of the Marshall University ďmemoryĒ in her head.

That position will probably not require a Masters in Library Science but will be a preferred qualification.

 

We have 4 major library systems coming up in June.

 

CELL PHONE PLAN

 

Herb

Karlet:†††††††††††† These are changes being made to the existing Cell phone policy.When we originally created this policy, we concentrated heavily on the stipend, but forgot about the purchase of the cell phone.It wasnít really spelled out in the policy.Accounting has been getting Pcard statements where people have been using their Pcard to purchase cell phone.They were then getting rebates on the cell phones and then asking accounting what to do with the rebates.It was the intention never to have bought the cell phone with university money.The purpose of this alternative plan was to totally be a personal purchase and a personal bill and then the user gets a stipend for the business portion of the personal bill.We got together and Arnold rewrote and edited the policy.

 

Arnold

Miller:††††††††††††† It still may be feasible for the institution to help subsidize the cost of some of the more advanced devices in some areas, but under no circumstances would state money be used to do that.Funding from alternative sources, if available, would be used.Under all circumstances, that would have to be approved by the Vice President.

 

The first thing we want to look at is the authorization form itself.It now has a new section in the middle for cellular telephone purchase.Everything else is the same.If you are requesting assistance on the cellular phone purchase you have a choice to ask for a base cell phone, a Windows mobile spark phone; a Windows mobile PDA or a PCMCIA card if you are going to use it in a computer.

Base is a regular run of the mill cell phone.According to the policy, you are expected to get that much.What we are talking about here are advanced devices that have a higher probability of containing sensitive information that we want to reserve the right to specify what the capability, security issues related to those, password protection, central ability to wipe out if lost or compromised.Those come in two types, a smart phone or a higher level such as a Blackberry.The third level is for a card to put in a notebook that lets you get data across the cell telephone network.That also has to be approved for stipend.

 

Marshall University Information Technology Council Cell Phone Stipend Plan Instructions.

††††††††††††††††††††††† In here, everything has remained the same until you get to something in red text. Basically, this was to help someone walk through the process step by step.Everything is the same until you get to the section on cell phone purchase.

1.      It is assumed that employee is responsible for the purchase of the base cellular phone equipment

2.      Under no circumstances should state funds or University purchasing card be used for purchase of cell phone equipment used under stipend plan

3.      Vice presidential approval is required for the purchase of cellular phone equipment under this plan from non-state allocated funds.

 

On the second page of the Cell policy in the middle section 2.2: Marshall University reserves the right to specify certain minimum capabilities of cell phone equipment used in conjunction with this stipend.Iíve added a section that comes at the end.Purchase of cellular telephone equipment:for the purpose of the stipend it is generally assumed that the employee is responsible for the purchase of phone equipment to be used for base cellular service.Most plans have established specials on equipment in this class; however, in those circumstances where advanced features such as data plans, access to computing systems or access to institutional communications and data are required, approval by the Vice President for that area may be obtained to provide all or part of the funding for this advanced equipment from non-state funds.These advanced features generally require that specific security features are available on the equipment and MU reserves the right to define the minimum capabilities of these devices.Under no circumstances should the university purchasing card or state funds be used to purchase cellular telephone equipment that is used under the stipend plan.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† Voted and Approved

 

Jan Fox:†††††††††† The next Agenda item involves Layton and I would like to wait until he is here to fully discuss.I know the Student Government Rep has probably already been dealing with this, but we are just overwhelmed with issues of illegal downloads.It is a problem everywhere.We have companies like Ruckus network coming to us wanting to sell us music to give to students.The concerns I have are both ethical and financial.Nothing is free.There are costs involved even if someone says they want to give you free music.There are band width considerations; there are real financials that come back to the university on bandwidth.The other issue with these companies, I have a concern ethically.If students feel like the music is free because everything they get on campus is free music, and they leave us and they continue those behaviors, we havenít done anything for students.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† We will wait for this discussion until Layton gets here because it is truly a legal discussion.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† We will have newsletter out for orientation that deals with all kinds of technical issues.I will try to approve that newsletter through this group first for feedback.It will have a whole issue on illegal downloads as a part of that.

 

 

Privacy and Security Issues:

 

Ohio University has recently been in the news for instances of unauthorized access to accounts.Luckily, we have gotten away from Social Security Numbers.My concerns are regarding our agreements with all our partners, whether it be internally, (i.e. who has access to the Enterprise System?) and as our data goes externally, (i.e. Foundation who are not directly Marshall centric) what controls do we have over our information?; what procedures do we have in place so that the security of the individuals is not compromised in any manner?I have asked Terri Byrd here today to describe what we are doing and to discuss if there are any additional policies or procedures we may need.

 

Terri

Byrd:†††††††††††††† What I have put together for you really encapsulates the issues that we are discussing in the Banner Oversight Committee (BOC) meetings as well as the Security Sub-committee of the BOC.We are talking about talking about security and the procedures and practices we have in place with regard to data security and individual permissions to data.This handout goes beyond that to the overall encompassing issue of privacy itself.

 

Iím not going to spend my time talking about privacy statements and lack thereof.What I want to talk today about is the security piece of the whole privacy initiative.

Where we feel that we are doing a good job is actually disseminating the permissions to the data to begin with so when people come in and the get accounts and permissions to data we are doing really good job of verifying their need to know and following proper procedures.One of the areas where we feel the need to improve upon is what happens when employees exit or when they move from department to department.We have things in place for when people exit, but we have some deficiencies there with regard to timing of their exit and when we are notified of that exit.We need to be able to detect movement from department to department to adjudicate changes in permissions to the information.The administrative procedure recommendations are going to be coming to you for review soon.

Our other areas of concern are our decentralization of the data that is not controlled in our central environment.We have so many tools now that make it easy for end users to retrieve, store and use the data to make their business decisions which is what we should be encouraging people to do.We have been sitting up the technology to do that.We have been educating these people on what their responsibilities are with regard to that as well as doing any kind of auditing of where these repositories of information are located, whether they are on departmental servers; personal laptops; or personal devices such as a PDA.We have a very good piece in our information security policy about the responsibilities of data owners, but what we feel we to be doing better is actually taking that to every employee and making sure they see it and understand it and understand what their options are with regard to the actual security of that data.

The overall governance of that is also an issue; who is the watchdog looking at this?

We really feel that there should be some training going on to truly educate all of us on whatís going on out there.

 

Jan Fox:†††††††††† This committee will need to review security and privacy policy and procedure.

 

This summer we will be testing within Banner pictures of the students for class lists. We probably need some type of information for faculty to make sure they understand what they can and can not do with those pictures.

 

We do not need to have meetings over the summer.We will begin the next year with security and privacy as a major topic area.I will also accept any agenda items from members.

 

Demonstration of Breeze Product

David Johnson

 

Jan

Fox:†††††††††††††††† The state of Indiana has already made issues with the threat of the Asian flu that if any person-to-person contact happens in the state of Indiana; they shut down all academic and state agencies for 4 weeks.This is one of their methods of continuing the university.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† We are going to try to introduce a new technology, hopefully at every meeting to give you some idea of things coming up.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† Do we want to meetings over the summer?It is agreed that we will have meetings on a per need basis over the summer months.If you see things that we may need to deal with before the Fall semester, please let me know.

 

Adjourned