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Technology Fee Advisory Committee
Meeting Notes:
Monday, May 3, 2010 - 3:00 p.m.
Bison Court West Conference Room

Members Present: Bonnie Neas; Rian Nostrum, Chair; Andy Bristow, Jon Bronken, Nick Cilz, Anne Denton, Gary Fisher, Jim Hammond, Cathy Hanson, Shannon Kempenich, D.K. Yoon

Members Absent: Jace Beehler, Brian Fier, Paul Gunderson, Abram Jackson, David Wittrock

Guests: Chad Coleman, Jon Okstad, Melissa Stotz, Janet Stringer, Michael Wolf, CeCe Rohwedder


Spring 2010 Technology Fee Action Plans processed:
Bonnie is in agreement with the committee’s recommendations for the Spring 2010 Technology Fee Action Plans, however, she asked the committee to consider the following two issues:

  • Plan #1031, “Org Sync”: before receiving the approved funds, the project director needs to follow a process, including an RFP, and communicate with IT Division staff; the project director has been so advised.
  • Plan #1033, “Additional Software for Clusters/Classrooms”: this proposal was denied due to unanswered questions that the committee had, so Bonnie invited Melissa to this meeting to address them, enabling committee members to reconsider the proposal. Melissa explained that she had asked for funding for software first in a proposal she submitted this spring, as such needs are not known until closer to April. The request is to replace the current ADA software, which is not Windows7 compliant, with the remaining amount requested to be used for software in instrumented classrooms that would better insure their technology.

[Anne Denton entered the meeting, at 3:10pm.]

Nick added that the request asked for three copies of JAWS for the Adaptive Technology Lab and 94 copies of DeepFreeze for all general purpose clusters, which will prevent unintended software from being installed on computers. There was no quorum at this time, so the members will be asked to vote on this proposal electronically after the meeting.

[Jim Hammond and Shannon Kempenich entered the meeting, at 3:12pm.]


Fall 2009 Technology Fee Action Plans reprocessed with the Spring 2010 Action Plans:
Bonnie pointed out to the committee that resurrecting the two Fall 2009 Action Plans, Plan #1019, “Wireless Internet Expansion through the Residence Halls,” and Plan #1012, “ACE Tutoring Center Technology Needs,” sets a precedent of not following the identified process for considering proposals. The former was originally funded fully except for $24,000, and the latter was not funded for the total amount ($2,200) requested. She did add, however, that she would be willing to fund proposals originally denied or not fully funded, if it is during the same revenue year. If a new revenue year has begun, such proposals may be resubmitted. She will, therefore, approve the committee’s awards as stated above.

Anne Denton stated that the proposal process must be better communicated to the campus community before the submission deadline, as that would eliminate the need for similar resurrections.

[Gary Fisher entered the meeting, at 3:15pm; quorum was thus reached.]

Discussion on Plan #1033 resumed, with Michael Wolf explaining that DeepFreeze is needed due to a rash of flash media viruses on classroom machines. There was a question of how the committee can accept this proposal, when a similar proposal had been denied for the same reason. Michael replied that in the past there had been a second software request cycle. Rian stated that the allocation of reserved funding identified in the committee’s Bylaws is meant to eliminate the need for submissions of such proposals.

Anne stated that if computer clusters are to become smaller, students should similarly be encouraged to use their own software and hardware. Concurring, Bonnie added that to that end there is a pilot project in progress, funded by $100,000 from last year’s contingency TFAC funds. Vendors Citrix and Dell are coming to campus soon to present their products.


Committee Membership:
Bonnie introduced Dr. D.K. Yoon, new committee member representing the department of Sociology/Anthropology and Emergency Management, and added that she has asked VP Myers to appoint to the committee a representative from International Programs.

Discussion on Plan #1031 resumed, with Jon Okstad stating that he met with Jeff Gerst and Marc Wallman last week for a discussion on how to work with ITS to make it easier for students to log on with their NDSU ID. He added that he also talked with Stacy Winter, Director of Purchasing, who indicated that no RFP is needed and that she would provide him with the appropriate forms. In communication with OrgSync, Jon learned that the cost for authentication is $2,000, and that OrgSync would waive the $1,500 set-up fee, bringing the total cost of the project to $30,000; this includes a three-year license and training. After Bonnie has received a letter stating that the required elements for this plan have been met, Janet will contact Amy Graff, Project Director for Plan #1031, re disbursement of the award.

[Melissa Stotz left the meeting, at 3:40pm.]

Jim moved and Nick seconded to approve a $30,000 award for Plan #1031. MSC unanimously.

[Jon Okstad left the meeting, at 3:45pm.]


Committee Bylaws:
Bonnie asked for the first-reading of the following recommended changes to the Bylaws:

  • Determining if there is need for a Vice-chair; and 
  • Increasing the maximum reserved for the ongoing support of Information Services to 50%, and decreasing the funds allocated by Action Plans specified in Article VI to 15%, in order to be able to again hire more student employees, as there had to be fewer students hired this past year.

Revisions to Bylaws require two readings, and Bonnie will bring back additional revisions based on today’s discussion.


Computer Clusters:
Nick reported that the cluster study recently conducted indicates that a move to virtual clusters will be well-received by the students and should make for a smooth transition. Students mainly use the present clusters for printing, but there is still a desire for clusters for teamwork and collaboration. Students suggested to either improve web site instructions or have a printing kiosk – a computer by a print station – available for printing, or to use Install Wizard. Anne added that instructions on how to print from laptops can be posted by each printer. Bonnie stated that contingency funds may be utilized to pilot go-print stations.


Michael explained that virtualization does not save on hardware; rather, studies have shown that it provides the ability to scale, it speeds up faculty requests for installation of new software, and it reduces log-in times, and thus improves the quality of service.

Anne pointed out that unless case studies were conducted in university settings very similar to ours, they do not apply to our environment; therefore, it would be best for us to run our own pilot projects.

Bonnie stated that TFAC contingency funds are being used for the virtual cluster pilot project because the proposals that the committee has been receiving are not sufficiently innovative and are, consequently, not funded.


TFAC Awards/Allocations; Central IT Funding:
Bonnie distributed and reviewed copies of a list of the FY09 Technology Fee Year-end Awards, as well as the document, “Funding Central Information Technology at a Research University,” part of a presentation given at the April 26, 2010 President’s Cabinet meeting, pointing out that investment in infrastructure will continue this coming year.

Bonnie also distributed and reviewed copies of the document, “Student Technology Fee CPI Calculations,” which invites consideration of an increase to the Student Technology Fee, as the last increase was in 2005. She added, however, that as long as enrollments continue to increase, the revenue from this fee also increases, allowing us to manage at present; but IT is expensive due to constant change and continuously growing demand on transport.

Lastly, Bonnie distributed and reviewed copies of the document, “Tech Fee Distribution Plan, Current vs. Proposed,” concluding that all these documents were solely intended to provide information, and that she would welcome questions and feedback.

Nick moved and Shawn seconded that the minutes of the March 3, 2010 meeting be approved as presented; MSC.

The meeting adjourned at 4:20pm.

Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

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North Dakota State University
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Campus address: Bison Court West 104
Mailing address: NDSU Dept. 5310 / PO Box 6050 / Fargo, ND 58108-6050
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Last Updated: Monday, August 08, 2011 1:36:53 PM
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