While EDUCAUSE 2016 has come and gone, there were countless introductions and insights presented last week that will influence higher education until Philadelphia next year.

One of the highlights this year was the launch of the new Cisco Digital Education Platform.  This platform makes it easier for colleges and universities to offer online courses and programs by integrating Cisco WebEx and Cisco Spark into a school’s existing learning management system (LMS), which means educators can schedule highly secure online classes, connect over video, manage attendance and share recordings – all in the cloud – within their own LMS.


You can check out more detail on this new educational offering within Campus Technology’s EDUCAUSE feature, “Cisco Debuts Online Learning Platform.”

In addition to the focus on digitization, we had great discussions on the need for new, online learning solutions with a range of publications, such as EdTech: Focus on Higher EdeCampus News and University BusinessEdScoop elaborated on the importance of simplicity and better integration and detailed how Cisco is working with Georgia State University to provide effective communications between students, faculty and staff – all in real-time.

Overall, one trend dominated both the presentation and discussion circuit: the critical need to secure sensitive student and research information within education. Now more than ever, colleges and universities – no matter their size or scope – feel the need invest in secure, affordable and easy-to-use technology. Cisco’s Peter Romness and Tae Hwang addressed these needs in-depth during their session on how the philosophy of “openness” on college and university campuses can safely survive (and thrive) with the integration of of the right technology tools.

As we look to EDUCAUSE 2017, it’s going to be important to focus on how colleges and universities can not only better collaborate, but also on how they can best meet their recruitment and retention goals. Be sure to check for updates on higher education news and trends on social media – we’re on Twitter at @CiscoHigherEdu and @CiscoEdu, and on Facebook at Cisco U.S. Education!


Renee Patton

Former Global Director of Education and Healthcare

Global Industry Solutions Group