For the past several weeks, my friends in Philadelphia have been bemused as I’ve recounted my adventures of conferences, happy hours, and networking events galore. With EDUCAUSE and the Apogee Customer Technology Seminar falling within the same three-week period, I’ve had a packed conference schedule that has finally started to wind down for the holidays.
One aspect of my role as the National Content Coordinator I’ve come to love is my ability to stimulate campaigns that educate our campus communities about important issues. The amount of stressors facing students in this intertwined web of social expectations and academic pressures can be overwhelming. However, we’ve found through conversations with students nationwide that our Campus Life Channel has the ability to inform and educate about sobering topics in a language that they can understand. The combination of the “broccoli” and the “cake,” if you will.
Inc. is one of my favorite magazines to read. A recent article particularly intrigued me—it focused on the difference between Generation Z and Millennials and noted that 40% of Generation Z said that working Wi-Fi was more important to them than working bathrooms. How quickly the world has changed. I got to thinking about our nearly 15-year partnership with Ithaca College, and how Wi-Fi is now playing an increasingly important role on campuses. If you visit Ithaca today, you’ll find a world-class Wi-Fi network enjoyed by students, teachers, and guests for everything, everywhere.
Move-in is historically a difficult time for students returning to campus and dealing with the logistics of moving into residence halls, finding classroom buildings, acquiring textbooks, connecting to campus WiFi, and generally facing the post-summer blues that arise with the first day of the fall semester. But move-in also signals exciting changes. It’s a chance for students to reconnect with friends they haven’t seen in months, get involved on campus, and launch themselves into academics and new research. At Michigan State University, Fall also signals exciting events such as Sparticipation, the campus-wide student organization fair in which over 600 organizations organize to recruit new members and communicate information about their clubs.
“Generation Z”: the still-mysterious yet wildly important generation that has worked its way into the Higher Ed sphere. While their predecessors, the Millennials, are “the most researched generation in history” according to Vision Critical, we’re still figuring out how Gen Z will behave in the real world, and how their departure from the Millennial mentality will affect Higher Education operations.
I was intrigued by an October 2016 blog post in Inside Higher Ed titled “Still Waiting for Recovery.” It reports on a Campus Computing survey which finds that nearly a decade after the financial crisis began, many college and university IT officers note their budgets still haven’t recovered. They say the combination of budget cuts and ongoing demands for new services, top professionals and the latest technology is putting them in a tough position.