News Update September 6, 2005

CT News Update:
An Online Newsletter from Campus Technology

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News for Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2005

* Universities Hit by Katrina Tap Technologies To Stay Afloat
* Tufts Hires U. of Rochester CIO to Head IT Department
* Gates Says Educated Workforce Top Economic Health Factor
* State Tech Worker Bilks Indiana U. in Overcharge Scheme
* UMassOnline Offers Programs in Aging, Other ‘Growth Fields’
* ETS Redesigns Web Site to Improve Assessment Services
* Reality Show Blog Promotes Study Abroad

ONLINE RESOURCES
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Universities Hit by Katrina Tap Technologies To Stay Afloat

By Dian Schaffhauser

In spite of a lack of electricity, a hugely damaged telecom
infrastructure, and increasingly explosive civil unrest,
university staff and students in Louisiana are applying
what technology they can to communicating with each other
and helping in the arduous process of rebuilding their state.

Molly Dorfman, a first-year medical student at New Orleans-based
Tulane University (LA), says she has stayed in close touch with
school friends through instant messenger, text messaging through
cell phones, and posting to an unofficial Google group started
by her class during the summer.

"It's been really helpful, because we needed to identify that we
got all of our people out," Dorfman says.

Read Exclusive CT Web coverage of Katirna
http://www.campus-technology.com/article.asp?id=11751

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Tufts Hires U. of Rochester CIO to Head IT Department

Tufts University has hired University of Rochester
chief information officer and provost Amelia Tynan as
its new CIO and vice president for information technology,
the Tufts Daily reported. She previously was vice provost
for IT at the University of Arizona. In addition to
overseeing Tufts Computing and Communications Services
(TCCS), Tynan will serve as co-chair of the IT Council
(ITC), a group of representatives from the university's
different schools and central administration.

Mary Lee, a co-chair of the ITC, said IT plays an
important role in coordinating the university's schools.
"What's critical is the coordination of school IT and
central IT," she said. At Rochester, Tynan consolidated
six separate IT units into a central Information Technology
Services Center. Tynan wants to implement similar collaborations
across schools and disciplines at Tufts.

"Light speed communications are instrumental in teaching and
research, and can blur boundaries between groups, disciplines,
and geography," she said. "A good CIO brings people together
and defines a shared agenda for what everyone needs. How to
mobilize and rally people together on getting things done is
what I plan to work on."


Gates Says Educated Workforce Top Economic Health Factor

A well-educated workforce, not tax breaks, is the key to
luring high tech-business to a state, Microsoft chairman
Bill Gates told state policy-makers meeting last week for
the National Conference of State Legislatures. "The industries
that I think about most ... are far more sensitive to the
quality of talent in the area than they are to tax policies,"
Gates said when asked how states can attract more jobs.

The economic growth engines of the future will be information
technology and biomedical firms, Gates said. "If you're coming
up with a breakthrough in medicine, it d'esn't matter if you're
paying a little more in taxes," Gates said during a wide-ranging
conversation moderated by University of Washington president Mark
Emmert.

Gates, who dropped out of Harvard University after his junior year
to found Microsoft, repeated criticism he voiced earlier this year
at a meeting of the National Governors Association that high school
learning standards had become "obsolete." He said it was worrisome
for the U.S. economy that the number of Americans studying science
and engineering was declining while those academic disciplines were
increasingly popular in China and other nations.


State Tech Worker Bilks IU in Computer Overcharge Scheme

A former Indiana state technology worker agreed to plead guilty to bank
fraud and money laundering for grossly overcharging the state and Indiana
University for computer equipment, the Indianapolis Star reported. Shawn
Solomon of Indianapolis is accused of billing IU and a state agency called
the Intelenet Commission for $93,842 in computer equipment, much of which
wasn’t needed, according to court documents filed last week

Solomon was a state networks senior engineer at the Indiana Higher Education
Telecommunication System, which operates the computer network for public
agencies, schools and libraries. He arranged the computer deal with a friend's
consulting firm and concealed the conflict. While the computer equipment was
worth $31,541, state agencies and IU paid $93,842 for it. Solomon got $44,000
out of the deal, according to court documents

The telecom agency, which receives $6.6 million a year from the state, is a
consortium of colleges and universities that provides information technology
to campuses so they can undertake such things as long distance learning and
video conferencing. The entity also operates the expansive network that
provides computer network services to about 700 government offices, 500
schools and 240 public libraries.

UMassOnline Offers Programs in Aging, Other ‘Growth Fields’

UMassOnline has launched eight new online programs, including an innovative
Behavioral Intervention in Autism Program. This graduate certificate program
was developed in partnership with the Eunice Kennedy Shriver Center, the
University of Massachusetts Medical School, and UMass Lowell, in an effort
to educate and develop compassionate healthcare and human service professionals.

The eight new programs address increased demand in growth fields such as
gerontology, autism, software development, and teaching English as a second
language. The new programs are: a Master's Degree in Gerontology, a Certificate
in Gerontology: Management of Aging , a Certificate in Behavioral Intervention
in Autism, a Master's Degree in Curriculum and Instruction, a Certificate in
Software Design & Development, a certificate in computer networks and distributed
systems, a certificate in club management, and a master’s in applied linguistics.


ETS Redesigns Web Site to Improve Assessment Services

The Educational Testing Service last week launched a redesigned Web site that
it claims dramatically improves service to its clients and makes available
electronically every program offered by ETS. The non-profit assessment
organization says more than 26,000 people visit the site, ets.org, each day.

The new site has information on assessments, including the Graduate Record
Examinations, the Praxis Series, Professional Assessments for Beginning
Teachers, the Test of English as a Foreign Language, and the Test of English
for International Communication. Links are also provided to The College Board's
SAT and AP programs.

Products on the home page of the ets.org include the Criterion Online Writing
Evaluation; the Pathwise series of professional development programs; and
ScoreItNow!, an online writing practice tool that can help people sharpen their
writing skills and prepare for the writing section of the T'EFL test. “With this
redesign, if we've got it at ETS, you'll be able to get it on ets.org,” said Scott
Weaver, ETS's chief information officer.


Reality Show Blog Promotes Study Abroad

Four college students have landed their own interactive educational reality show
called BlogAbroad.com. They are: Jonathan Jackson, a 20-year-old Rice University
junior; Vanessa Ruiz, a 22-year-old photography major at the Rhode Island School
of Design; Amy White, a 24-year-old grad student at the University of Colorado
studying post-colonial North African history; and Keri James, a 20-year-old from
Wellington, New Zealand, who us completing her degree abroad at Hartwick College
in Oneonta, N.Y. They are blogging their stories to entertain people and to inform
them about the realities of studying abroad.

The four bloggers were chosen by three judges from over 100 students studying
abroad who competed for the parts. They are given tasks to complete and they
post new episodes at least three times a week, which are available for viewing
24 hours a day.

This is the second season of the show. "The second season will continue to
innovate and give the audience an influence over the show like never before,"
said Mark Shay, president of StudyAbroad.com. "Plus, while highly entertaining,
BlogAbroad.com is a terrific educational tool. It is a way to show firsthand
what it's like to study abroad."

For more information, visit http://www.blogabroad.com

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Online Resources

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Microsite: Wireless Technologies for the Campus Enterprise
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White Paper: Mapping Information Technology Strategies to Answer Today’s Agenda
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White Paper: Benefits of Dynamic Signage in Higher Education
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