IT subgroup of the 2020 S&T Taskforce
Members: John Bean, Don Brown, Suzanne Farnsworth, Robert Jones, Erik Hewlett, Kevin
Sullivan, Tim Sigmon
Opportunities and importance of IT to UVA are obvious
but how do we find Anita's "Unfair competitive advantage?"
Held one face-to-face meeting plus continuing on-line discussion.
Paths and precedents are NOT obvious and we are still a "brainstorming" mode.
Have begun to organize our discussions into the following categories:
FROM THE MUNDANE TO THE "BRAVE NEW WORLD:"
2) Opportunity Tracking - info on grant and collaborative possibilities
3) Marketing ourselves, our work and our product via IT to those outside UVA
4) Capture - recording "best" of UVA for use and reuse
5) Delivery of services to our "customers" (students, colleagues,
Obvious: Continuing growth of computational resources, networks
centralized expertise / training / support
Already on the agenda / part of the ITC
requires 2020 input only if our ideas go
"out of the box" (see below)
Opportunity: Can an OUTSTANDING infrastructure, itself, be a driver?
"The wireless campus?"
Wake Forrest's program of laptops w/ upgrade to every student?
"Community of Science" is golden to the health sciences
- Grant opportunities fed to investigators automatically
- Internal / External directory of experts and would-be collaborators
- Even designing custom version for internal use
Sounds great but it has not been picked up by rest of S&T. Why?
Inappropriate to physical sciences / ENG and need something better?
Surveys play a central role in our recruiting of undergrad and grad students
Those surveys are often based on minimal knowledge ("I know one good person
at that school so I'll rank them highly")
The World Wide Web has probably become the 1st or 2nd most
important factor in recruiting out-of-state and international students
For surveys and recruiting: A little bit of IT marketing can go a LONG WAY
UNFAIR ADVANTAGE: Standard of Web information is low - still easy to beat the
May already have marketable material (
if we can figure out what it is)
- Freely offer examples of our best (see CAPTURE task, below)
Clips or materials from the most popular S&T courses
Free / on-line intro courses? (plant the hook deeply)
- Design UVA search engines to report back on what people are trying to find or what type
of websites people spend most time at
and apply resources thereto
- Build enhanced UVA search engines for which faculty could enter profiles and keywords to
help outsiders find best and latest efforts
The "Best of UVA" for marketing AND for broader internal dissemination
Great lecturer? Get it on tape so a lesser successor can teach a better course
Great result / speaker / idea? Let the world know
Small but important idea: on-line "UVA this week" calendar
What we decide to capture depends largely on our "Delivery" priorities
- Virginia's population is increasingly in the DC suburbs - UVA is not!
- Virginia Tech, George Mason
are active in N.Va - UVA is not!
- Our absence is well known and bears an increasing political price
Collaborations with "Sister" educational institutions to supplement their
EXAMPLE: George Mason is light on hard engineering courses but wants to offer full
Workplace Education: Earning a degree on the jobsite
May be only palatable way for many to earn a degree (or the next one)
Can be important job recruiting / retention carrot for industry ($ for us)
EXAMPLE: George Mason "Prince William Campus" and NOVA site located across
the street from large Lockheed-Martin & Dominion Semiconductor Plants
Home-based business person / primary care provider
Growing, but largely ignored, professional population
Sharply limited time and mobility
Focused S&T educational needs - specific courses not degrees?
THE BRAVE NEW WORLD: The (not-quite) Free University
Completely online and / or televised degrees
A degree for every Virginian - right in their living room
- But someone is going to do it !
- Might we want to be the leaders and visionaries (rather than the roadkill)?
Who develops the "broadcast" infrastructure and format ?
Do we, as educators develop means or do we partner with, or follow the lead of,
Internet Service Providers (AT&T? AOL? IBM?
Major content producers
e-Publishers (when they come into being)?
Disney? The Learning Channel?
How do we derive or apportion support for the university?
How would we differentiate and enhance the surviving (?) on-campus degree program?
OTHER DELIVERY IDEAS
The Global Online Scientific Databank (the journal-less society)
Telemedicine or other distance means of delivering our non-teaching services