Cisco Blogs


Cisco Blog > Government

Lynn Wins Big with Cisco Technology – Successfully Hosts Presidential Debate

February 21, 2013 at 8:49 am PST

Lynn University is a 50-year old private, coeducational institution located in Boca Raton, Florida.  So how was this fairly small and quiet school selected to host the final 2012 presidential debate?  It’s booming with technological innovation.

The school has long held the belief that student collaboration and sharing of knowledge is vital to the learning process, but realized with time, they need to increase student support through technology.  To move to a 1-to-1 program entailed giving each student an iPad and overhauling its network environment. In late 2011, as this transformation was underway, Lynn discovered that they would also soon be the youngest school to ever host a presidential debate.

This meant the school had less than a year to undergo a complete technical refresh, so Lynn turned to Cisco for help. University CIO Chris Boniforti summed up his decision to select Cisco by saying “All of our diverse technical requirements, for both the debate and the university, could be done under one umbrella, with one vendor, and that was Cisco.”

This umbrella of technology included Cisco wireless solutions, Cisco Unified Computing System and Cisco security, voice and IP communications. Cisco joined forces with longtime partner Modcomp to deliver a solution the university could use well beyond the presidential debate.  The result:  A successful implementation that resulted in a “technically smooth” debate.

It’s important to note this project didn’t shut down once the debate was over.  Today, the school is committed to providing a mobile platform for its entire faculty and students by the time the newest crop of freshmen arrive in fall later this year.  The addition of the new business school will include lecture capture and resources-sharing tools, including video.  Now embedded in the teaching environment, this benefit would not have been possible without Lynn’s new Cisco network.

I’m personally impressed with the university’s commitment to technology.  They are a great example for other small schools looking for cost-effective innovation. What do you think?  Is your school ready for this kind of transformation?

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Modcomp and Cisco Join Forces for Final Presidential Debate

October 23, 2012 at 12:55 pm PST

This week South Florida’s Lynn University was taken over by the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) for the final debate of presidential candidates Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. Moderated by chief Washington correspondent for CBS News and Face the Nation moderator, Bob Schieffer, this debate was critical for the final polling outcome. Just on the Sunday prior to the event a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll showed the race tied.

Cisco is proud to say that it took part in the behind the scenes. Lynn University partnered with longtime Cisco partner Modcomp to provide a secure environment for all data center and voice communications during the debate. Modcomp and Cisco beat out seven other firms vying for the opportunity. Lynn worked with Cisco and Modcomp to design solutions for the short term that could also serve the university in the long term so that the school is not simply buying technology for a single-time use.

Our Director of Government Strategies & Healthcare, Cassie Roach, recently discussed Cisco’s participation in the debate and how Cisco is enabling Lynn to bring the debate directly to voters. Cisco has extensive experience in providing products and services for events requiring reliability, flexibility, and scalability in their networks, including the London Olympics and each of the last three Democratic and Republication National Conventions.

Lynn, Modcomp and Cisco used technology and tools to scale live access and broaden the reach of the debate; this is the infrastructure Cisco provides. Specifically, the solution architecture included real-time intrusion detection and prevention, Network Access Control, self-provisioning guest portals, network monitoring and segmentation, and policy and bandwidth management and enforcement. The result:  A successful debate that allowed Lynn to meet the CPD’s stringent requirements and bring real-time communications and an unmatched user experience to voters.

Just how many resources went into this debate? The Miami Herald reported that more than 70 miles of cable was laid across the campus to broadcast the debate and pre and post shows. Additionally, nearly 3,500 media were credentialed to cover the debate.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,