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Blackboard Commerce Suite Driving Cashless Campus Transactions

Blackboard reported that several colleges and universities in the United States have selected software from its Commerce Suite to address campus commerce and security management. The company said that most of the schools have implemented the Transaction System, which administers online, real-time campus commerce, meal plans, vending, and facility access control through a campus one-card.

Among the new Blackboard customers are Utah State University, Washington & Jefferson College in Pennsylvania, and Minneapolis Community and Technical College.

"As a dynamic urban two-year college, our students, faculty, and staff have come to expect services that anticipate and deliver to meet the rapidly changing needs of our community," said Gary Westerland, director of auxiliary services at the Minneapolis college. "The Blackboard solution provides our institution with tools to meet these expectations and options for growth as these needs evolve."

Two other schools have purchased additional modules. Besides Transaction System, Catawba College in North Carolina and Hamilton College in New York have deployed Community System, which provides online account management and e-commerce capabilities. Catawba also implemented BbOne, which enables the acceptance of the university ID card as a form of payment off-campus by connecting local merchants to student accounts.

The Commerce Suite addresses payment management and access control. Schools have chosen the solutions to handle securing access to buildings and residence halls, doing video surveillance, offering cashless payment on- and off-campus, granting access to laundry services, parking and copy services, as well as providing self-service online account management.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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