Information Technology Services Plan
For Fiscal Year 2022/23 and Beyond…
We are resourceful, outcome-oriented strategic partners who are empowered to collaborate with the Macalester community to cultivate teaching and learning.
- Our work is aligned with, and complementary to, the Imagine, Macalester strategic plan.
- We are forward-thinking, equity-centered, and innovative, bringing enthusiasm and an open mind to new ideas.
- We are outcome-oriented, using process mapping and technology selection to help improve the experience at Macalester.
- We architect the Macalester environment to be stable and secure, with an eye on best practice.
- We are cloud-first with limited customization and a focus on Software and Infrastructure as a Service.
Major Initiatives for Fiscal Year 2022/23
Campus-Wide Information Security Awareness Training
By June 2023, faculty and staff will be enrolled in ongoing cyber security awareness training, in order to comply with the expanded Federal Trade Commission Safeguards Rule.
Zoom Phone Migration
By July 2023, all campus phone numbers will be moved to Zoom phone and our legacy phone system will be decommissioned. This will modernize our voice communication by bringing Voice over Internet Protocol (VOIP) to our technology stack.
A Single Moodle
In Fall 2023, Macalester will deploy Moodle version 4. This release will include important interface upgrades and behind-the-scenes updates and marks a change in how Macalester will manage Moodle. Instead of creating an environment with a single semester’s courses, we will move towards using Moodle as a resource that houses all semesters going forward. This unified environment will make it easier to move content from semester to semester, give faculty earlier access to prepare courses for future semesters, resolve complicated interfacing with external tools and relieve ITS of redundant work of creating a new Moodle each semester.
By December 2022, replace end-of-life storage system that runs all of Macalester’s on-premise servers and their storage. The previous system is no longer supported by the manufacturer and is an outage risk if not replaced.
CLAC at MAC
Plan for, and lead a successful CLAC (Consortium of Liberal Arts Colleges) conference hosted at Macalester the week of June 26, 2023. Provide a welcoming environment where IT professionals can network and learn from their peers. This conference will enhance our relationship with peer institutions for further collaboration.
Lead the Campus in Process Improvement Initiatives
By May 2023, partner with campus stakeholders to map processes for tenure and promotion, employment services, student admissions – deposit experience. This helps streamline our processes for improved user experience though our systems.
Windows 2012 Retirement
Migrate away from and retire remaining Windows Server 2012 operating systems prior to the October 10, 2023 end of support date to ensure we don’t run legacy operating systems and put the college at increased security risk.
Major System Cloud Migrations
By January 2023, complete the migration of Argos reporting system and Macalester’s website to the cloud to ensure business continuity of key systems.
Continuous Improvement of Technology Service Delivery
By June 2023, certify all ITS staff on Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) Foundations, complete the service catalog, and revamp ticketing system to include process flow to serve our community needs more efficiently, intelligently, and systematically.
In the next 5 years we will…
Strengthen Teaching and Learning by:
- Reimagining computer labs: Through use of Lab Stats and community conversations, reconceptualize the public computer labs to maximize student access. Changes could include anytime/anyplace access to software, collaborative student computing spaces, and transforming the traditional lab space to meet student needs and use. We will also ensure current dedicated teaching labs have the tools and flexibility to increase access for marginalized communities and that all students have access to the tools they need for their coursework.
- Transforming classroom technology: Integrate Universal Design for Learning guidelines to create inclusive and easy to use technology that allow for flexible teaching, remote participation, and accessibility for all.
- Promoting Digital Liberal Arts (DLA): Highlight student and faculty DLA work in order to recognize its importance as scholarship and amplify opportunities for experiential learning. Streamline processes to build capacity and make DLA more approachable. Engage the full DLA team to foster innovation, access, equity and inclusion, connection across campus, and support for community-based projects.
- Maximizing the Digital Resource Center (DRC): Highlight the DRC’s role as a resource for discovery, experimentation, and innovation. Continue to increase access to digital tools and knowledge on campus. Promote the DRC as a hub for experiential learning.
Transform the Student/Faculty/Staff Experience by:
- Improving manual processes through process mapping, digitization and automation.
- Enhancing access to campus services, tools and information through a revamped portal or resource hub.
- Streamlining and maximizing use of campus software and systems, improving system navigation, process, and reporting.
Enhance Cybersecurity and Protect Macalester’s Data by:
- Strategically moving services to the cloud and creating resilient, reliable and secure information technology resources for all members of the Macalester community.
- Developing policies and safeguards that are constructed in accordance with laws and regulations that govern the Institution to provide definition and instruction for sensitive information and how it should be handled.
Improve the Institutions Access to Data and Business Intelligence by:
- Implementing a data warehouse (or similar structure) that aggregates data from diverse systems into a single repository
- Establishing formal Data Governance at Macalester to further inform the use of our data
- Redefining data ownership, working with campus partners to understand who maintains data and who is in charge of its accuracy. This includes defining which personal data can be maintained in a self service framework.
- Increasing ease of access to data needed for evidence based decision-making
- Implementing role-based data access, granting access to data based on position without relying on request procedures.
- Implementing Business Intelligence software that enables the college to retrieve, analyze, and transform data into actionable insights
- Breaking down business process silos to increase visibility to data flow across the campus
- Exposing lists of data based on search criteria made available in a self service framework based on campus role.
- Standardizing data integration across disparate systems with a goal towards real-time (or near-real time) synchronization.