Residence halls to implement wireless plans, student says

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    Students are interested in making TCU’s entire campus wireless and installing new classroom technology, said a student representing undergraduates on the Computer and Telecommunications Committee.Matt Madderra, a junior computer information technology major, serves as the chairman for the student subcommittee creating a new technology plan for the 2006 fiscal year.

    Madderra sent an e-mail to all students last week requesting their input about campus technology.

    “Although we haven’t received feedback from the survey, many students have voiced their concerns to me on campus,” he said. “There is currently a four-year plan to make the entire university have wireless capabilities.”

    Madderra said implementing the wireless plan began last year when all academic buildings on campus became equipped with wireless connections. Last summer, the plan revolved around making sure other buildings on campus were wireless, including the Student Center and the University Recreation Center.

    “The plan will continue this summer when all residence halls will have wireless connections,” Madderra said. “By the fourth year, all outside areas around TCU will have wireless capabilities.”

    Students have also voiced their opinions about electronic dry-erase boards in classrooms, he said.

    “Instead of markers, professors would use computer stations and could save anything they write on whiteboards to the computer to pass out to students,” Madderra said.

    Arthur Busbey, associate professor of geology, is chairman of the Computer and Telecommunications Committee.

    He also expressed the importance of a wireless campus.

    “There was a time when the most important thing the committee did was to make sure each faculty member had computers,” he said. “Now we are working on a wireless campus and networking throughout dorms.”

    Busbey explained that the primary function of the committee is to assess the technological needs TCU has and make sure they enter university planning.

    “We take the previous plan from two or three years ago and update it with these surveys and get new ideas from all over campus,” Busbey said.

    The Computer and Telecommunications Committee is broken into three subcommittees representing faculty, staff and students. The faculty and staff members are appointed by the chancellor and the student representatives by the Student Government Association.

    Madderra said the committee is in charge of allowing student access to campus facilities through ID cards and said the issue is very important to him.

    “Every student should have access to buildings they need at all times,” he said.

    The student survey, which can be accessed at my.tcu.edu, will end next week, but will not be discussed until February.

    Emily Burgwyn, director of student affairs information services, said she has been receiving completed surveys from students, but said she will not release the results until the committee has had a chance to view them.

    The technology plan will be implemented in June with the new fiscal year.