The Office of Information Technology is pleased to present the OIT Annual Report for 2014. It was a noteworthy year, with many significant goals achieved, as we continue to manage the technology operations for Brookdale Community College. We successfully completed several strategic projects that improved access to new and existing technology resources, and upgraded services to meet the growing demands of the college. Our achievements have built a solid foundation for future progress, positioning us to strengthen Brookdale’s Enterprise Infrastructure, while improving the efficiency and effectiveness of our services. OIT is well-suited and committed to providing maximum value, while serving the mission statement of Brookdale Community College, as we move into the upcoming fiscal year and beyond.

I have witnessed the evolution of technology at Brookdale Community College, into the 21st century, under the direction of the Office of Information Technology. OIT should be commended for their dedication to the students, faculty and staff of Brookdale Community College.   Denise DeMichael - Manager-Educational Services Systems

Our Mission

The Office of Information Technology's mission is to achieve excellence through the design, development, and application of information technology in support of learning, teaching, service, and the conduct of the College business consistent with Brookdale Community College's mission.

Technology Highlights

Mobile MOBILE

The new Brookdale Mobile application launched in January 2014. Built on Ellucian Go mobile platform, the Brookdale mobile app supports real-time integration with Colleague. Students are able to quickly and easily access their grades and schedule, Faculty have mobile access to their course rosters and schedules. The mobile app features campus map, important telephone numbers,news, events, multimedia, and more.

Data INFRASTRUCTURE

In April, the network core switch was updated and a Cisco UCS 5100 Series Blade Server was installed. This was a major accomplishment and the first phase of a three-phase network upgrade plan. The infrastructure upgrade supports a scalable and flexible architecture for the current and future data center needs, and allows Brookdale to leverage new technologies such as, Virtualization and other high demand applications. Virtual Desktops Infrastructure (VDI) reduces the cost of ownership and maintenance, provides greater defense against catastrophic failure, improves update speeds, and provides an easy way to customize desktops for users or groups of users. Virtualized units are centrally managed and controlled, reducing the need for on-site service and maintenance.

ENTERPRISE APPLICATIONS

Two important goals of the ERP Re-engineering project were met this year. New Degree Audit requirements were optimized for student self-service that significantly improved the Degree Audit process. Additionally, Academic Terms were combined to align with a financial aid award period, so aid is automatically allocated for students with enrollment in both 15 and 11-week terms. In the past, separate terms mitigated the need for staff to allocate awards for students with enrollment in both terms.

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Accomplishments

Brookdale Implements OneCard

Full Implementation of the Brookdale OneCard system was officially launched in September 2014. This yearlong initiative was a collaborative effort led by OIT, Finance and Operations, with support from Student Services, Student Life, Admissions, Financial Aid, Human Resources, Marketing, and Culinart Food Services. The Brookdale OneCard is a multipurpose card that serves as the official Brookdale Community College photo identification card, and a prepaid declining balance debit card. Brookdale Bucks can be used for purchases at campus Bookstores, vending machines, and all dining facilities. Students have an optional feature where they can elect to have their Financial Aid disbursements and refunds directly deposited to the Brookdale OneCard. The Money Network® Enabled Discover OneCard is not a credit card. The Brookdale OneCard will improve campus security, support monitoring and attendance tracking at campus events, and enable Pay for Print options at designated campus copy centers.

SharePoint Launched

The Brookdale SharePoint Intranet, “Brookdale Share” was launched in December 2014. OIT Networking and Applications teams, worked closely with the Portal RFP Committee on this initiative. SharePoint replaced the MyBrookdale Campus portal and serves as Brookdale’s Employee Intranet for broadcasting College-wide communications, disseminating information, central repository for employees files and forms, and as a workspace for collaboration amongst committees and departments. SharePoint is included in Brookdale’s Microsoft Enterprise license Agreement. It features a modern clean interface, an intuitive navigation, a consistent look and feel, has a powerful document management system, robust search features and built-in Business Intelligence tools that integrate across Office applications and other Microsoft technologies. SharePoint as a platform offers many great building blocks for making collaboration easier and more productive.

Desktop Virtualization

Last spring, Brookdale piloted Virtual Desktop Computing environments with the Mathematics, English, Computer Science, and Psychology departments, using VMWare Horizon Client. As a result of the successful pilot, LAH 125, LAH 228, and Wall Rm 111 are running the Virtual Desktop environments for the student computers in these labs. Desktop Virtualization is software technology that separates the desktop environment and associated applications from the physical device, the computer, which is used to access the desktop and applications. Virtual desktops are accessed from any computer that has the Virtual Desktop Client installed, without the need for specific hardware requirements. Courses that require a particular application or suite of applications can be scheduled in any lab that supports virtual desktops. Simply stated, desktop virtualization allows you to achieve more with less by simplifying and streamlining management and improve computing accessibility. OIT will be replacing nine labs with new Virtualized Thin client desktops during the summer.

Read More Accomplishments

By The Numbers

Did you know OIT supports 36 Departments and over 12,000 students 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with over 40 technologies and services. Here are some numbers you may find interesting.


Number of inbound emails delivered to Brookdale

% of inbound emails blocked as spam or malicious emails

Number of website hits

Incoming calls to the college

Total number of SNOW cases opened

Total number of SNOW cases resolved

Average yearly up time of network

Average customer satisfaction rating on a scale of 1-5
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2015 Priorities

Rapid and increasing changes in the evolution and landscape of technology shortens the window for accurate long range forecasting and planning. OIT recognizes these challenges and is committed to providing technology services and solutions relevant and aligned with the priorities of Brookdale Community College. With this in mind, OIT has created a roadmap to guide our priorities over the next three years. The priorities outlined in the roadmap are a result of a collaborative planning process between OIT, Administration, Finance and Operations, and Educational Services. Below is a high-level overview of OIT priorities for 2015.

Infrastructure

The networking infrastructure upgrade is critical for supporting and ensuring innovation and improvement of Brookdale’s Academic programs, and increasing the efficiency of administrative and business processes. A major initiative for 2015 is implementation of Phase II of the infrastructure upgrade, increasing the networking backbone from the current 1GB bandwidth to 10GB bandwidth. The increase in bandwidth will support the expanding Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) initiative and improve network performance by tenfold. The upgraded backbone is also required for updating the wireless network. OIT will be upgrading the wireless network infrastructure from the wireless 802.11n standard to the most current wireless 802.11ac standard. AC standard provides newer technology, improved coverage and increased density to support all types of wireless devices.

Enterprise Applications

The ERP Re-Engineering Project was initiated with the vision of advancing Brookdale’s strategic goals and objectives by improving how people, processes and technology interact across the institution. The project goals include positioning Brookdale to take full advantage of the current and future features of the Colleague ERP, creating an environment that can quickly react to meet the ever changing needs of the institution, improving the student experience, increasing workforce productivity, and improving ERP performance. ERP Re-Engineering Project initiatives for 2015 will include implementation of the Budget Management module, Web Time Entry and Approvals, Assignment Contracts and Colleague Financial Aid, in preparation of the 16-17 Financial Aid cycle.

Student Services

Expansion of the Brookdale OneCard will include a new pay for print service for students. The Pharos pay for print solution stations will be installed in the Lincroft Library and all the Student Success Centers at the HEC’s and remote locations. The system is designed to make students more mindful of their printing choices while, providing an experience that is simple, secure, scalable and flexible. The Pharos system will integrate with the OneCard and current printers. Students can use Brookdale Bucks and their OneCard to pay for printing services.

Additional Accomplishments

Website Redesign

January 1, 2014, OIT, in collaboration with BCC Marketing launched, the new Brookdale Community College Web site. The redesign provides a fresh new look and feel, improved usability, and user-friendly navigation. The audience driven menus make it easier for all visitors to quickly and easily find relevant content. The platform supports an extensible and responsive design which allows for optimized viewing across all types of mobile devices.

Online Requisition Request and Approval

OIT worked closely with Finance and Operations to create an electronic workflow for the requisition request and approval process. Staff are now able to electronically generate a purchase requisition, which is then routed to the appropriate supervisor for approval and processing. The electronic workflow streamlines the approval process, making it more a timely, efficient and cost effective process. The process also supports electronic tracking and revisions of requisitions.

Improved EarlyBird Registration Process

Application Support staff collaborated with Recruitment, Counseling and Testing Services to develop a personalized online PDF form, so that incoming High School Seniors can access their Accuplacer Test Scores online and print their Early Bird Check-In Ticket prior to attending Early Bird Events. This significantly decreased the registration and processing of students attending Early Bird events, as well as cut cost in printing and mailing of Accuplacer scores.

Security Awareness Training

In November, OIT launched a web based Security Awareness Training Program for all full-time Brookdale Employees. The objective of the training is to educate staff and faculty on how best to protect their identity, secure Brookdale information, PCI, and data from cyber threats and attacks.

Disaster Recovery

The Disaster Recovery infrastructure has been configured for all of Brookdale’s critical systems. The recovery infrastructure includes a co-location in Philadelphia, a cloud presence in Rackspace, and a presence at the Freehold Campus. In the event of an unforeseen disaster, which may result in significant disruption or loss of service, OIT will be able to implement the IT Contingency plan and provide access to Brookdale’s Critical systems within 24hrs. The plan focuses on sustaining Brookdale’s business functions (i.e. payroll process, registration, etc.) during and after a disruption.

Common Sign-On

OIT deployed a Shibboleth Identity solution that allows Brookdale to leverage a common sign on platform which allows users (Students, Staff and Faculty) to access various Brookdale applications and services, with a single username and password. This service was previously outsourced as a SaaS, bringing the solution in-house has reduced yearly expenditures.

OneCard and Library Access

The Library Millennium system is now fully integrated with LDAP and OneCard, which means that Brookdale Students, Faculty and Staff can use their OneCard to access library resources and materials without having to remember their 14 digit Library code.

Automation of Software updates and Installations

OIT has been expanding its use of KACE (Dell’s software distribution, inventory, patch management application) to schedule automatic installation and updates to all Brookdale desktops and laptops after-hours to reduce downtime and use of man power. In August, over 300 units were upgraded to Office 2013 using KACE. KACE is a more efficient, streamlined process for providing desktop services and ensuring that all computers are running the most up to date operating systems, and have the latest security patches and application updates.

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