University CIO talks technology with senators
THE SANTA CLARA
January 19, 2017
Less than a week after returning from winter break, members of the Associated Student Government went back to the drawing board, planning what they hope to accomplish this quarter.
The Jan. 12 meeting started with guest speaker Bob Owen, vice provost and chief information officer for Information Services. A former member of student government back in his college days, Owen appeared comfortable speaking to student senators and the room welcomed him warmly.
He spoke to multiple issues of importance with regard to the technology Santa Clara students heavily depend on.
One of these issues is Santa Clara’s current enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, also known as eCampus. The software was originally created in 1996, and according to Owen, switching it up will make a big difference. He described the inelegant design of eCampus, saying it was very outdated and difficult to navigate.
“In technical terms, it sucks,” Owen said.
According to Owen, most systems are moving towards being cloud-based and Santa Clara wants to keep up. Implementation of a new ERP will be well underway by 2019. Senator Austin Gray questioned the distant deadline.
“If the ERP is so bad and so old, why is it several years away from being fixed?” Gray asked.
Owen said that budget limitations pushed this issue to the back burner, but he ensured senators that when it the technology is updated, it will be for the better.
Another topic discussed was about student’s maintaining their Santa Clara email addresses indefinitely after graduation. As the current policy stands, students lose access to their Santa Clara email accounts in the months following their graduation.
Owen wants to change that by June of this year.
In addition to extending use of Santa Clara student emails, a new standardized naming system will be implemented for increased accessibility to individual email addresses.
When it came time for the executive and committee reports, the discussion centered on potential new campus activities. A virtual reality product demo is in the works, as well as more succulents throughout campus and more beach chairs on the pool deck.
Senator Alex Perlman also voiced his support for more movement in reopening the observatory.
“The conservatory, as always, is a project,” Perlman said.
Perlman also proposed creating more specific art majors in the College of Arts and Sciences, as well as the possibility to pursue a double major within the business school.
The ASG Senate will meet again on Jan. 19 at 7 p.m.
Contact Meghan McLaughlin at firstname.lastname@example.org.