Cross Functional Team (CFT) Charge: Global Education

September 22, 2005

Purpose

To advance Dickinson College's vision of a global campus by offering support and providing opportunities for collaboration between the Dickinson campus in Carlisle and our various centers abroad.

Background

During the spring semester of 2005 the Office of Global Education created a task force from members of differing departments including Admissions, Development, LIS, Athletics, Student Activities, and Global Education to consider and evaluate ways to create a global campus that would enrich the experiences of students in Carlisle as well as provide connections to home for students studying abroad.  Most of the ideas generated by the task force involved technology in some manner.  Some of these ideas, such as implementing blog's and facilitating hardware updates for our abroad centers, have already been pursued.  Others, such as audio/video conferencing with Polycom units or Skype, have been implemented to varying degrees at the different centers abroad.  The goal of this team is to implement fully the ideas already in progress and discuss new possibilities using technologies that may further this goal.

Process

The team will meet to discuss current initiatives and what needs to be done to complete them.  Team members will also brainstorm further possibilities.  A timetable for each project will be established, and particular attention will be paid to the availability of staff with technical expertise to implement initiatives onsite.  (For example, Todd Bryant is scheduled to visit several of our abroad centers in Europe in October 2005.)

Issues

  • The level of technical support varies at the centers abroad.  Some have relatively good support and are considered part of a large and well equipped university;  others are more isolated and depend on a mix of student labor and consultants.
  • While all of the computers are now running Windows XP, the internet connections again vary.  Some are part of a university network; others have  private DSL connections of variable quality.
  • Routers for these private systems were set up by private consultants, but may need to be altered for some applications.
  • Directors at the offices are largely independent and will need to be consulted regarding the implementation of any changes.  The team may need to be proactive in convincing directors of the benefits offered by such changes.
  • Although we have succeeded in moving our centers to Microsoft XP, we know that each center uses different computers and forms of connectivity to the Internet.  We need to think about the need for baseline standards for computing at the centers and at other locations for Global Education programs. 
  • We need to capture information about computing assets at the centers and enter this information into the asset tracking system maintained by the User Services Department.  
  • Computing assets for the centers has to date been purchased by Global Education.  We need to think about whether LIS should include these costs in its budget.  An analogy may exist in terms of the fund transfer that occurs each year from the NEH Endowment controlled by Global Education to the library.  In this case Global Education funds are administered by LIS.   Another aspect of this issue is that of placing computers at the centers on the same replacement cycle as those on the Carlisle campus. 

Decision Making Scope and Process

The CFT analyses technical, functional and organizational issues within the scope of the purpose statement above and makes recommendations through its team leader to the Vice President for Library and Information Services.   The Vice President in turn takes recommendations to the LIS Management Group at his discretion.  When a recommendation has budget implications, the Vice President may approve requested expenditures or may confer with the LIS Management Group with regard to seeking funding from the All College Committee on Planning and Budget. 

Initial Deliverable

The CFT's initial deliverable will be a report from Todd Bryant summarizing his trip to the centers in October 2005.  This report should address the following:

  • List of computing assets at each location
  • Nature of connectivity to the Internet at each location
  • How support is provided at each location
  • Library services at each location
  • Digital photos of each location
  • Service issues and opportunities

Reporting

The Cross Functional Team Leader reports for the purpose of this activity to the Vice President of Library and Information Services. 

Resources

Necessary resources for the implementation of individual initiatives will be addressed on an "as needed" basis through the established budget request process for LIS.


Staffing

  • Todd Bryant (Team Leader, LIS Academic Technology Department)
  • Chuck Steel  (LIS User Services Department)
  • John Steely (LIS Infrastructure Systems Department)
  • Yunshan Ye (LIS Library Services Department)
  • Brian Brubaker (Global Education)
  • Petar Gitsoaika (Student Liaison, Alumnus from Program Abroad)
  • James Gerencser, Acting Director, LIS
  • Malinda Mochizuki (Global Education)

Timeline

The team will meet as needed to establish workflow and deadlines for individual projects.  (Early efforts will focus on what can be accomplished prior to a October 2005 visit to several European centers by Todd Bryant to provide training and to finish installations and modifications that could not be done remotely.)  The team will continue to meet on an ad hoc basis to discuss new technological developments that may have valuable application for the Dickinson College study abroad experience.