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Addressing Security Challenges and Campus Safety

Schools are facing increasing security challenges, ranging from campus violence to thefts, from vandalism to natural disasters. Abductions, Shootings, Bullying, Thefts, Vandalism, Visitor Management, Bomb threats, Fire, Earthquakes, Local Community Emergencies.

According to the respondents to the Campus Safety Magazines 2013 yearbook & survey, here are some  top challenges for schools in 2013:

  • 43%  more than 2 in 5 campuses lack a visitor management system
  • 39% have a video system not integrated with other systems
  • 33% have radio systems that can’t interoperate with first responder from other jurisdictions
  • 25% or 1 in 4  campuses do not feel prepared to respond to active shooter incidents

Higher Education and school districts often have sufficient network infrastructures to support everything they need in terms of unified collaborative safety and security applications on the network including video surveillance, electronic access controls and incident management.

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The Internet of Everything: Transforming College Education To Align with Business Needs #IoE

As a father of future college students, I’m excited that Cisco’s announcement yesterday about the Internet of Everything (IoE) Economy may finally transform college education to provide graduates with the real-world skills needed by businesses today — and tomorrow.

Before I jump too far ahead, let me explain what Cisco announced. Cisco estimates that there are currently about 20 billion things connected to the Internet, yet more than 99 percent of physical “things” remain unconnected. Obviously, there is a huge opportunity to connect the unconnected. IoE aims to do just that by adding people, process, and data to the things that are connected to the Internet, such as devices, sensors, and machines.

To help businesses understand how to benefit from IoE, Cisco IBSG’s Economics Practice calculated the amount of Value at Stake in the IoE Economy. Value at Stake is defined as the value that will either be newly created or will migrate between lagging companies and industries to the leaders over the next 10 years based on their ability to harness IoE. We did this by taking a bottom-up approach of selecting and analyzing 21 industry-specific and cross-industry use cases, including the one I’m discussing here: connected private college education.

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From this analysis, the team determined that there is $14.4 trillion of Value at Stake in the Internet of Everything Economy over the next decade. The five main drivers of this Value at Stake are:
1. Lower costs from improved asset utilization ($2.5 trillion)
2. Greater efficiencies from improved employee productivity ($2.5 trillion)
3. Less waste from supply-chain and logistics efficiencies ($2.7 trillion)
4. Greater lifetime customer value from improved customer experiences ($3.7 trillion)
5. Increased return on investment (ROI) and new revenue from faster innovation ($3.0 trillion)

So, how much of this value comes from improved education? Read More »

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Technology Promotes Education

The saying “you’ve gotta give credit where credit is due” is exceptionally literal for Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. Recently becoming recognized as one of the most successful academic institutions in the country, Liberty University can thank its ability to support the huge influx of students, faculty, and staff to the updated technology infrastructure of their data center.

With growth comes the need to accommodate the large numbers of people and resources – including IT support. The current IT systems were outdated and obstructing the potential for online expansion at the university. By implementing the Cisco® Unified Computing System™ (UCS), based on Intel® Xeon® Processors, Liberty’s network became more flexible, scalable, and reliable. The virtualized and consolidated infrastructure is able to support the multitude of users, which is ideal due to the 85,000 students accessing the network from 95 countries around the world.

Cisco UCS has significantly decreased downtime for both students and staff, resulting in the ability to focus on education, not IT issues. Higher satisfaction, growing enrollment rates, and a unified network make for a promising future for Liberty University and its students.

Read the full article here.

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Realize the Promise of BYOD with the Next Generation Education Workspace

February 6, 2013 at 8:33 pm PST

Can 1 +1 really = 3 (or more)?  Consider the opportunity presented by the thoughtful convergence of BYOD and virtual desktop technologies.

BYOD is one of the most important trends in education technology today. However, many BYOD initiatives are limited to providing personal devices with basic network connectivity via the campus Wi-Fi network. Traditional virtual desktops (VDI) are not new in education. Historically, VDI has allowed the delivery of non-persistent desktops, primarily to thin clients.

Through the Cisco Unified Workspace for Education, schools, colleges and universities can now provide next generation education workspaces that are virtual, social, mobile and collaborative. The Cisco Unified Workspace for Education integrates the Cisco BYOD and Virtualization Experience Infrastructure (VXI) Smart Solutions to provide students, faculty, and staff with the flexibility of using any device to access any information, any application, and any expertise—from anywhere.

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A Six-Part Series: Transforming Higher Education in the US

February 1, 2013 at 11:02 am PST

This six-part series will focus on transformation of the traditional higher education system in the United States.  While a topic that causes some anxiety for higher education leaders, there is no choice but to change.  The question is how colleges and universities across the country will go about that change and the role that technology can play in facilitation and accelerating transformation.  This series will focus on:

  1. AM73672The Need for Change
  2. Challenges in Changing the System
  3. Systematic Change and Navigating Culture
  4. Modernizing Teaching and Learning
  5. Scaling Best Practices
  6. Recommendations

Part 1 – The Need for Change
Across the nation, colleges and universities are being challenged to transform their systems of higher learning.  While each institution is different, all share common problems: They must contend with outdated teaching methods, crushing budget pressures, and the need to deliver a relevant education that adequately and effectively prepares the workforce of the future.  As a result, educators are being faced with the need to make significant revisions to less-than-optimal systems, in an environment that is dictating that change needs to be made. Institutions that adapt to these imperatives will thrive, while those that are incapable of change will meet their demise.

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