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Technology Happenings In Higher Education


CT Briefs

WAKE FOREST U offers admissions interviews via webcam.

THE NEW ADMISSIONS INTERVIEW: CAM-TO-CAM? Applicants at Wake Forest University (NC) may now elect to take their "face-to-face" interviews with WFU admissions counselors using a medium most are familiar and very comfortable with: the webcam. The university tested its virtual interview process this past October with early decision students and, in light of its success, now offers the option to all applicants. The Admissions office has been using Skype for the interviews but, to conduct interviews that will not require a Skype account, soon will have Adobe Connect software as well. Admissions staff also hold traditional in-person interviews as needed, both on campus and in their travels around the country. "While a personal visit is the first choice, the virtual interview is an innovative way to use technology to connect individually with those who, because of financial or other reasons, cannot come to campus," says Martha Allman, director of admissions at Wake Forest.

VERSATILE WEB CONFERENCING. At the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia, standardization is the mode of choice for a web conferencing system, used widely across campus, and for diverse groups. "We identified that standardizing on a web conferencing solution would not only support distance learning, but also would give administrators, faculty, and students immediate anywhere, anytime access to information and to each other," explains Chris Lehmbeck, director of Darden Media. The school has implemented Adobe Connect across its Executive Education, MBA, and MBA for Executives programs-- as well as for administrative functions schoolwide. Read more here.

IMMERSED IN EXCELLENCE. St. Paul College (MN) and Sun Microsystems have opened the new Sun Center of Excellence for Open Virtual Worlds. The center's demonstration of cutting-edge immersive education technology will help support the work of the Education Grid and advance the global build-out of an open network of servers used by the Immersive Education Initiative and the Media Grid. At the center's virtual ribbon-cutting event Jan. 22, St. Paul officially opened its Virtual Northstar campus, which will offer classes beginning in fall 2009. St. Paul College President Donovan Schwichtenberg, Sun VP of Education Joe Hartley, and Grid Institute Director Aaron Walsh were on hand for the virtual celebration.

CT GreenZIPPY AND TRIPPY. Duke University's (NC) Zipcar vehicle-sharing program has students going into "green" gear. An environmentally friendly Zipcar can be rented starting at $8 per hour or $66 per day, including insurance. When the students are done using it, they just turn it in. And students can reserve the vehicles online or via cell phone. Read more here.


Eduardo PadronPADRÓN TO CHAIR AAC&U. The Association of American Colleges and Universities has elected Miami Dade College (FL) President Eduardo Padrón as its chair. Padrón, who served as AAC&U vice chair last year, says he will work to "advance a comprehensive agenda that will help maintain the nation's colleges and universities as the best in the world." As MDC's president, he oversees the nation's largest higher education institution. Padrón serves on the CT editorial advisory board.

Sayeed ChoudhuryCHOUDHURY APPOINTED CLIR FELLOW. The Council on Library and Information Resources has appointed Sayeed Choudhury, associate dean for digital library programs at The Johns Hopkins University's (MD) Sheridan Libraries, as a CLIR Senior Presidential Fellow. CLIR President Charles Henry says Choudhury will offer CLIR perspectives on "building successful coalitions of diverse constituencies."

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