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Sacramento State Moves 50,000 Accounts to Office 365

Sacramento State University, part of the California State University system, is moving 50,000 accounts to Microsoft's cloud-based productivity and collaboration suite, Office 365. It's one of three universities that recently made the switch, Microsoft revealed at its annual United States Public Sector CIO Summit Wednesday.

Office 365 launched as a free service for education institutions about nine months ago, succeeding the Live@edu service. It incorporates all of the features of Office 365, including e-mail, document sharing, Web conferencing, Web site creation, 7 GB of storage per user, calendaring, instant messaging, and Office Web apps (Word, OneNote, PowerPoint, and Excel).

According to Microsoft, Sacramento State is making the move in an effort to save on costs and consolidate services, The campus was already an Exchange and Office customer.

"By moving some 50,000 accounts to the cloud, Sacramento State will be able to greatly reduce the cost of providing email and related communications services without compromising the quality of service," according to Microsoft. "Faculty, staff and students will continue to get the best-of-breed Exchange features, plus SharePoint and Lync services, that will truly expand access to anytime and anyplace availability."

Microsoft has reported several other public sector organizations have moved to its cloud-based Office 365 solution as well. The company attributed the move in part to "budget realities" facing public entities.

"The rapidly increasing public sector adoption rates for Microsoft Office 365 are directly tied to current budget realities and the fact that our customers need to be more productive at a lower cost," said Curt Kolcun, vice president of U.S. public sector at Microsoft, in a prepared statement. "Organizations are achieving significant cost savings through the cloud delivery model while gaining access to the latest collaboration tools without sacrificing on security or privacy."

Two other universities in the United States have also migrated to Office 365, Microsoft reported. University of Miami is moving some 40,000 student and staff accounts to the cloud-based service. According to Microsoft, Miami's Miller School of Medicine "required a cloud solution that offered a business associate agreement as mandated by the U.S. Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act because it handles sensitive health data, and Microsoft offered the capability to provide security and privacy safeguards to meet this federal law."

University of Colorado Colorado Springs is also shifting to Office 365. According to Microsoft, the university has moved 29,000 student and alumni e-mail accounts to the service and is in the process of rolling out SharePoint, Office Web Apps, and Lync to students as well.

About the Author

Executive Producer David Nagel heads up the editorial department for 1105 Media's education publications — which include two daily sites, a variety of newsletters and two monthly digital magazines covering technology in both K-12 and higher education.

A 21-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art and business publications.

He can be reached at dnagel@1105media.com. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/profile/view?id=10390192 or follow him on Twitter at @THEJournalDave (K-12) or @CampusTechDave (higher education). A selection of David Nagel's articles can be found on this site.


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