enterprisesecuritymag

Weaving Robust Identity Systems Into The University's Security Infrastructure

By Dr. Jan I.Fox, SVP- IT & CIO, Marshall University

Dr. Jan I.Fox, SVP- IT & CIO, Marshall UniversityDr. Jan I.Fox, SVP- IT & CIO, Marshall University

Innovative ways to foster growth within their organizations

Growth within the Marshall University IT organization means utilizing existing team members in new, innovative ways while reaching out to new collaboration partners. University Libraries are part of the IT Team and have taken on new roles and responsibilities. Circulation staffs are now members of the IT Service Desk Team, while Library faculty is imbedded to support technical and information literacy both in and out of the redesigned flipped classrooms. Our mobile strategy required a total over-haul of the entire University web site to support responsive web design. Securing the campus or cloud resources requires working with external vendors, strong campus-wide policy and governance teams, along with adding an Information Security Office. The greatest challenge is sustaining a stable, technical staff with skills that businesses crave.

Infrastructure investment to counter the onslaught of both digital content and mobile devices

The infrastructure to support the dramatic increase in mobile and wireless devices requires new strategies that include supporting 802.11ac. This will require wiring upgrades to support multi-gigabyte connections to access points, monitoring applications and a superb technical staff that have the right tools to perform proactive monitoring of problems in the mobile environment. Students have insatiable appetites for streaming video, social media and online everything. On an average, each student is bringing more than three disruptive devices to our campus and resident halls. Traditional central financial models that are based on wired port cost recovery must now be reviewed in a “shared service” model. Robust identity systems must be woven into the support and security infrastructure.

Role of Big Data in the Education Space

We are in the infancy of knowing just how to unleash the power of the unstructured information, but we are well down the path. Learning Analytics can assist in accelerating knowledge scaffolding. Higher education is now in an outcome driven mode, which requires us to ask more meaningful questions that will provide academic and financial insights into the business of education. Defining student success requires new metrics as we draw connections between all levels of academic performance, including the prior K12 experience, outcomes of job attainment and life-long accomplishments.

Technologies and initiatives that helped the university to excel or keep pace with the change

One of the barriers is that the majority of our current universities’ Enterprise Resource Performance (ERP) Systems are not designed for managing the growing variation and pace of change in our campus requirements. The new successful institution belongs to the ranks of those who rethink the entire information spectrum. Visualizing new information connections can unravel the complexities of learning, administrative efficiency, healthcare and research.

Technological trends impacting the education sector

The combination of personalized and adaptive learning paired with MOOCs will change the entire educational paradigm. It will not happen overnight, but academic tools are appearing that can uniquely provide content based on correcting concept or content deficits that are exclusively tailored to the individual’s academic acumen.