Schools must value IT teams to attract tech-savvy students
- Students are customers, and the first line of customer service for potential students is a strong IT support infrastructure, according to a recent article in Ed Tech.
- Institutions which cannot deliver “secure, high-performing connectivity” through the college or university will have a difficult time attracting students and faculty. Students also need to be given an opportunity to be involved in IT decisions and give needed feedback.
- UC Berkeley’s Student Technology Council was heralded as a model for collaboration between students and the school's CIO. Students are represented on IT committees and they help staff the school’s IT help desk, allowing students and IT professionals on campus to maintain a close relationship while providing relevant work experience to students.
Integrating students into campus IT response teams not only offers students input into campus decisions, it could also promote to the student body the importance of campus security and wise usage of data storage. It is important to introduce students to the fragility of cybersecurity on a campus populated by thousands of devices, as hackers are increasingly targeting students as a possible entry point to inflict damage. Students must be better equipped and understand the danger of weak passwords, along with the importance of pinpointing and reporting suspicious e-mails.
Involving students in such essential IT conversations can help them feel like they are a part of the solution on a campus, and may inspire them to further disseminate and inform other students about those important safety tips. In lessons on cloud computing, for example, educators reported how important it was for students to be cognizant of not misusing data, to the point that students in such classes were penalized if they used too much. The more administrators work to make students aware of the costs and necessity of proper use of tech and data on campuses, the more colleges can avoid more disastrous consequences in the event of a student’s mistake.