State of IT at WPI
The alignment of IT initiatives with our strategic plan, academic vision and research thrust areas is excellent. The IT Division figures prominently in the WPI Strategic Plan. Since completing most initiatives in that ten-year plan and making progress on remaining items, IT has focused on their Data Protection and System Recovery planning and is beginning a more formal IT Strategic Planning process.
We are implementing/planning hardware and software resources that will provide WPI with an off-site disaster recovery site with hot-backup for mission critical systems: the myWPI teaching and learning portal, Banner/Oracle enterprise resource system, UNIX academic and administrative file storage, and the WPI web site. Other division-wide key initiatives include the IT web site service integration project that will aggregate Web access to nearly all IT services, IT visioning exercises and strategic planning activities within individual departments, development of an e-business plan with key project prioritization, crisis planning, operational audit, FY04 operational and capital budget development, and FY03 budget execution.
WPI owns the Goddard GigaPoP, a connection to Internet2's Abilene network. This network, of 200 educational and research institutions, is 1000 times faster than the commodity internet. WPI invited regional educational institutions to connect to Internet2 via the Goddard GigaPoP. The monthly gatherings blossomed into the Goddard Collaborative, where shared information results in cost savings and improved services. Members include Olin College, College of the Holy Cross, Assumption College, American Antiquarian Society, and many other institutions. Other examples of our community outreach include work to create a bioinformatics computing facility with the Mass. Biotech Initiative (MBI), and board membership on the Worcester InfoTech Corporation - a regional business development activity.
WPI won an EDUCAUSE award for Excellence in Campus Networking (2001). EDUCAUSE is a national organization for higher education whose goal is to advance higher education by promoting the intelligent use of information technology. Although WPI has an outstanding network, this award heavily weighted our use of instructional technology and integration of IT services. WPI has consistently been recognized by Yahoo Internet Life Magazine as being one of the "most wired" national universities (10th, 18th, 23rd (2000); 2nd - small college category (2001)).
In summary, IT creates vision, is aligned with our formal strategic and academic plans, executes yearly spending within budget, is focused on improving services and creating new capabilities, exploits synergies across the division, hears critical feedback, and has a culture of dedicated, service-oriented staff that strive for excellence in our mission of continuous customer delight!
Last modified: Sep 26, 2008, 16:19 EDT