I’m switching gears from last week’s Public Sector BYOD Thursday blog on BYOD in the government – it’s time to talk about education!
While I was visiting my 6 year old niece in Denver last week, she amazed me with her agility when navigating the iPad. I watched in awe as she surfed the American Girl website, downloaded videos from YouTube, and played games. With children engaging so well with personal devices, it’s no wonder educators want to leverage technology as a learning tool.
While a BYOD-friendly environment certainly lends itself to greater productivity, mobility, flexibility and employee satisfaction, it also raises certain challenges, especially in education settings. After all, when it comes to schools, we’re not just talking about employees; staff, teachers and, most importantly, students all must be taken into consideration.
We know many students and staff want access to their personal devices while they’re at school. They want to use these devices for planning, research and work purposes, ranging from group projects to personal email accounts and social networks. The desire for wireless connectivity from personal devices is certainly strong at universities. In fact, the University of South Florida (USF) negotiates 40,000 wireless users, with up to 11,000 of them simultaneously accessing the network at any given time.
Schools find themselves addressing issues of scalability, security, manageability and budget when it comes to developing and implementing BYOD policies. How will they accommodate in real time the explosion of new devices and applications that students and staff want to use on the network? How will they regulate who uses what device from which location in what manner? How will they support BYOD within a restricted budget?
Cisco helped USF securely expand its network to meet the demands of its population by implementing a streamlined wireless solution. Cisco provided a network that scales to meet the university’s needs, centralizes maintenance, and provides intuitive, intelligent management protocols.
With Cisco’s Unified Workspace, we’re enabling educational institutions everywhere to realize the same successful transition to BYOD. We’ve detailed our BYOD solution for education here, so please take a look. Let us know if you have any questions about the technicalities—we’re always here to elaborate and explain!
It’s our mission to provide cost-effective, comprehensive network-based solutions that let schools create 21st-century connected learning environments. There’s no question that BYOD can and must be part of such an environment. Are you ready to make it happen?
Next week we’re going mobile!
*Cisco is also currently on the road talking about all things BYOD. Find out if it’s coming to a city near you.