Information Technology Committee
November 22, 1996 Minutes

                Information Technology Committee
                       November 22, 1996

Present:  Max Bassett (by phone), Tom Butler, Gen Sen Chu for Laura McCullough, 
George Duffy (acting chair),  Dan Riley for Gail Kettlewell and Arnold Bradford, Fran Emory, Yitna 
Firdyiwek, Dan Himes, Paul McVeigh, Vince Pizzurro, Neil Reynolds, Steven Sachs, John 
Sener, Lionel Sylvas

Absent:   Arnold Bradford, Gail Kettlewell, Charlotte Wilhelmi

1.   Minutes Approved

Minutes from the October 18, 1996 meeting were approved.

2.   Reports from tasks assigned at last ITC meeting

a.   Location of computer/phone wiring drops - Mr. Pizzurro

Input from the campuses has been coming into CIS and the information is being 
incorporated into the bid specifications for wiring contractors.  There has been 
some delay at the Department of Purchase and Supply, but progress is being made. 
 It is expected that the bid for campus cabling will go out by December 1, and will 
close on December 10.  The goal is to have five contractors working simultaneously.

b.   Campus cabling timetable - Mr. Pizzurro

As noted above, the cabling bid process is expected to close December 10.  That is 
slightly behind schedule.  Until the bids are received, the exact completion date for 
wiring on all five campuses is unknown.  CIS staff expect it to take 3-6 months.  
The hope is that all the cable will be in place by late Spring.  Even though the new 
contract(s) have not been awarded, some on-going cabling projects are being 
completed under existing contracts.

c.   Allocation plan for new and upgraded computers - Mr. Duffy

A plan for new and upgraded computers was presented by Mr. Duffy and Dr. 
Sachs.  The plan was based on the latest campus survey of existing 486 and 
Pentium computers, and on standards discussed at the most recent meeting of the 
OATC.  Dr. Reynolds moved acceptance of the plan that most closely followed the 
College Computer Allocation Model approved at the last meeting. The two most 
significant aspects of the plan were (1) it insured that at least 50% of all computers 
were Pentiums, and (2) it did not require shifting existing 486 computers from one 
campus to another. In addition to the computer allocation plan, Dr. Sylvas 
proposed that the minutes reflect that the plan for Year 3 is to upgrade 486 
computers at the campuses with fewer Pentiums with the goal being equity at all 
campuses.  The target is to equalize the percentage of Pentium or better computers 
at each campus.  In addition, the allocation plan is to be constantly reviewed and 
revised by the ITC according to the Guiding Principles and actual experience at 
implementing the plan.  The committee approved the plan with the additional 
language unanimously.  The allocation model as approved is included as an 

d.   New technology positions - Dr. Sachs

Advertising the new positions approved at the last ITC meeting was delayed based 
on new information from other VCCS colleges.  A new allocation model for the 10 
positions was handed out, and approved by the Committee.  Dr. Sachs will work 
on preparing the ads, positions descriptions, and Notice of Vacancies for campus 
review.  The new position allocation model is included as an Attachment.

3.   Report from the Operations and Applications Technology Committee - Mr. 

Minutes of the November 19 OATC meeting were distributed.

a.   Selection of a college-wide software suite

The ITC approved the report of the OATC subcommittee that recommend MS-
Office as the college-wide software suite, and added two-year version upgrade 
protection to the plan.  This will insure all users have the same version at the end 
of the College=s two-year Technology Plan.  The plan also allows continued use of 
WordPerfect 6.1 or later at campus/department expense.  College-wide support 
and training will not continue to be provided for WordPerfect.  The report is 
included as an Attachment.  MS-Office Pro for Windows 95 will be purchased for 
those computers that do not already have it from the College technology funds.  
The software will be installed by campus staff.  Dr. Sachs will work on an 
allocation plan and a plan for acquiring and distributing the software licenses so the 
software is available as soon as possible.

b.   E-mail /internet

The report on college-wide e-mail and internet access from the OATC 
subcommittee was presented.  The subcommittee proposes testing several e-mail 
client packages prior to adopting one for college-wide use.  No work has been 
done on the server component of an e-mail system.  Additional technical 
information is needed to determine the best strategy for providing e-mail, internet 
access and dial-up access.  Dr. Williams chairs the subcommittee and will solicit 
additional members and technical help from the campus CITGs.  The ITC 
recommend making a decision on the client software quickly so it could be loaded 
on the new computers that will be ordered for Year 1 of the General Technology 
Plan.  The report of the subcommittee can be accessed from the home page of the 

c.   Computer standards

Mr. Pizzurro handed out extensive materials on available computer contracts and 
gave the background of purchasing problems that limit the college=s ability to buy 
name-brand computers.  After much discussion on a strategy, it was decided that 
Mr. Pizzurro would work with the Provosts to collect specific data on failure rates 
of the recent WIN computer purchases, and for keeping track of failure rates on 
new computers.  Those campuses wanting to purchase computers for use Spring 
semester will buy Acer-brand computers that come closest to the VCCS standard 
configuration, if a three-year warranty can be obtained.  Mr. Pizzurro will work on 
obtaining a price and warranty information.  The campuses interested in ordering 
computers will notify Dr. Sachs with a 105-25.  The budget code is 1-6017x 
(x=campus code).  These computers will count toward the Year 1 computer 
allocation approved earlier in the meeting.  A number of committee members 
offered to look for reliability and other technical data to help choose the name-
brand computer the college will purchase for the majority of Year 1 new 
computers.  Mrs. Eisenberg, Director of Purchasing, is working with other 
colleges to identify a purchasing strategy to overcome the traditional limits on 
selecting the computers wanted by the college community.

4.   Voice mail - Dr. Sachs

Dr. Sachs proposed a six-month pilot test of voice mail.  Participation would be voluntary 
with each office expected to pay for the service from their own budget.  Some felt they 
could not afford it from their budget and that it should be funded centrally, especially if 
faculty were to be included.  Many college offices already make extensive use of 
answering machines.  The committee asked Dr. Sachs to develop a proposal and cost 
figures for college-wide voice mail to be funded centrally for future consideration.  The 
original  proposal is included as an attachment.

5.        Computer repair outsourcing - Mr. Pizzurro

Mr. Pizzurro distributed a list of questions and concerns that need to be addressed in 
developing a plan for computer repair outsourcing.  He was asked to send these to the 
CITGs for review and input.  Responses are needed in time to discuss this further at the 
January meeting.
6.   Status report on College Technology Plan time line - Dr. Sachs

Dr. Sachs provided an update on progress relative to the time line in the College=s 
General Technology Plan.  Everything is currently on track, but December and January are 
critical times for keeping on task.

Physical Infrastructure - by mid-December specific plans for drops, wiring closets and 
cabling is supposed to be complete and ready for cabling to begin; the plan calls for 
cabling to take place December 24 - February 17, with final acceptance testing by mid-

PCS - by the end of December the plan calls for an initial plan for assignment of PCS to 
offices and individuals, with the final configuration due by February 3.

Server Set-up - by mid-December the plan calls for an initial plan for allocation of servers, 
with the plan to be finalized by mid-January.

Training - the plan calls for the training curriculum to be developed by mid-January with 
on-going training to take place as computers arrive and are set-up.

Office Suite and migration to NT - not scheduled in the plan until mid-1997.

7.   Other Items

A memo from Dr. Chu, representing the LRC Directors= Roundtable, was distributed.  
The memo noted that 68 new computers would be need Spring 1997 and 61 additional 
new computers would be needed Spring 1998 in order for the Testing Labs to continuing 
running the on-line placement tests.  The item was referred back to the campuses for 
consideration in the allocation of their student computers in the General Technology Plan.

Mr. Duffy distributed a set of infrastructure guidelines that were developed for new 
buildings that will become the college standard.

8.   Summary of Pending Items

a.   Survey to identify specific upgrade needs of existing 486 and Pentium PCS - Dr. 
b.   Preparation of Notice of Vacancy for new positions for campus review - Dr. Sachs
c.   Development of allocation/licensing plan for upgrading currently networked PCS - 
     Dr. Sachs
d.   Decision on e-mail client software for new and upgraded computers - Dr. Williams
e.   Development of ordering specifications for Acer Computers - Mr. Pizzurro
f.   Development of survey for distribution to campuses on WIN problems - Mr. 
g.   Requests for Acer Computers for student use Spring semester to Dr. Sachs - 
h.   Development of strategy for purchasing PCS from vendor of choice - Mrs. 
I.   Develop college-wide voice mail proposal - Dr. Sachs
j.   Review and comment on computer repair outsourcing - CITGs

9.   Summary of Items for Future Meetings
a.   SIS Committee - Dr. Sachs

10.  Next Meeting
The next meeting of the Instructional Technology Committee is scheduled for Friday, 
December 20, 9:30 a.m., in the Board Room of the Brault Building.

The January meeting of the Instructional Technology Committee is scheduled for Friday, 
January 17, 1997, 9:30 a.m., in the Board Room of the Brault Building.

cc:  Members
     Dr. Ernst

Notes prepared by:

Steven G. Sachs
Associate Dean for Information Technology

Committee Chair:

Max L. Bassett
Dean of Academic and Student Services

Computer Purchase and Upgrade Distribution Plan


Year 1         $ 2,200,000
Year 2         $ 2,200,000

Plan calls for 2,443 computers

Currently networked computers 700 (est.)
Existing Pentiums      431    (186 for students, assume 245 currently networked for staff)
Existing 486s       1.005     (Assume 700-245=455 currently networked)

Cost to upgrade software to Windows95, Microsoft Office Pro, Software upgrade 
protection, and Personal 
Communicator 3270                       $ 335

Cost to upgrade existing Pentium computers with CD-ROM and sound card $ 250

Cost to add Token Ring network card to existing computer                   $ 150

Cost to upgrade existing 486 to Pentium (w/o software or Token Ring)       $1,000

Cost of new Pentium with college-purchased software and Token Ring         $2,635

Cost of printer with network connection                          $1,300


1.  Upgrade all existing Pentiums
     Software 431 x $335                     $   144,385
     Token Ring for those without (est.200 x $150)            30,000
     CD ROM and sound cards 431 x $250              57,750
                                                  $    232,135

2.  Convert all currently networked 486s to Windows95 and MS Office Pro
     (455 est. total x $335)                                $    152,425

3.  Purchase 579 new Pentiums                          $ 1,525,665

4.  Purchase 18 printers and network connections                 $     23,400
     (1 per division)

5.  VTEL Videoconferencing units from VCCS                  $    240,000
6.  ATM Cell Muxes from VCCS                           $      25,000

                              TOTAL YEAR 1        $ 2,198,625


          Total fully featured Pentium computers       1,010
          Networked 486s with MS Office              455
          Additional 486s still available                      550


1.  VTEL maintenance agreements                             $      20,000
2.  Purchase 437 new Pentiums                          $ 1,151,495
3.   Upgrade 51 486s to Pentiums                            $      75,735
4.  Upgrade remaining 954 486s with software and CD ROM          $    801,575

                              TOTAL YEAR 2        $ 2.048,805

(Potential surplus to purchase 50-60 new computers or upgrade 300 486s to Pentiums)


          Original Pentiums (fully featured)         431
          New Year 1 Pentiums                   579
          New Year 2 Pentiums                   437
          486s Upgraded to Pentiums                    51

                    Total Pentiums      1,498

          Remaining 486s                       0

                              November 8, 1996

TO:       Members of the Information Technology Committee

SUBJECT:  Review of new technology staff positions

Since the College's General Technology Plan was developed and approved, we have 
learned how other college's are dealing with their new staff.  A number of those colleges 
are hiring at the Grade 12 and above, rather than the Grade 10 we chose for NVCC.  In 
addition, as we work on implementation details, it has become clear that more support is 
needed on the campuses. There also needs to be consideration given to supervising the 
increasing number of individuals working with technology on the campuses. We need to 
discuss whether to keep the current grades and distribution of positions, or adopt a 
different model.

Here is an alternative model for distributing the 10 new positions that meets the concerns 
raised by several campuses:

1 Grade 12 Computer Operations Supervisor for each campus
1 Grade 10 Agency Management Analyst (CIRA) for AN and AL
     (AN continues to provide support for the ODU lab)
1 Grade 10 Agency Management Analyst (CIRA) to support College Staff
1 Faculty Generalist to support financial aid
1 Faculty Generalist to support college wide projects

Under this new plan, MA and LO receive a full position instead of a half-position, AL and 
WO do not share positions with other units, financial aid gets a faculty generalist instead 
of a Grade 10 position (prior to the Technology Plan this position had been designated as 
a Grade 13), Dr. Sachs and Mr. Pizzurro each give up a position.  The position for the 
help desk can be taken from the current micro computer repair staff that are being 
reassigned to administer the network.

This new model costs more than the original staff distribution model, but provides better 
support at the campus level.

Please review this new proposal.  We cannot proceed to fill the new positions until the 
issue of appropriate grade and distribution is settled.


                                        Steven G. Sachs
                                        Associate Dean
                                        Information Technology

Report from the Subcommittee on College-wide Office Suites
Operations and Applications Technology Committee
November 8, 1996

Members of the Subcommittee:  Gilbert Mehrtens (AN)-chair, Robert Bruce (AL), 
Carmen Medina (MA), Steven Sachs 
(CS), Jayne Townend (ELI).

The Subcommittee held several meetings to discuss the selection of a college-wide office 
suite.  It also held two open forums by video conferece at each of the campus.  
Announcements of these forums were sent to all campuses, provosts, division chairs, 
directors and LRCs.  Given the time pressure to make a decision, there was not time to 
advertise the forums in the Intercom.

Based on the Subcommittees discussions and input from the forums, it makes the 
following recommendations to the full Operations and Applications Technology 

1.   The College should adopt the Microsoft Office Suite as the college-wide standard 
for the business of the college.

2.   MS Office Suite for Windows 95 or MacIntosh  should be installed on all college 
computers at college expense as part of the College=s General Technology Plan.

3.   The College should provide full support and training for all faculty and staff on MS 
Office, consistent with the College=s General Technology Plan.

4.   All faculty and staff should be expected to learn to use all the components of MS 
Office, regardless of whether they prefer other software packages.

5.   MS Office should be installed on all computers and all faculty and staff trained in 
its use within two years, as specified in the College=s General Technology Plan.

6.   Those users who prefer WordPerfect as a word processor may continue to use 
versions 6.1 or higher with the following considerations:

a.   WordPerfect 6.1 or higher must be purchased as campus or division expense.
b.   There will be no technical or training support for Word Perfect; however, faculty 
and staff can enroll in regular credit courses that teach WordPerfect, consistent with 
college policy governing tuition assistance.

7.   Use of all earlier versions of WordPerfect (5.1 or lower), Wordstar, AMI Pro and 
other word processors should be discontinued.

8.   It is the obligation of the creator of a document to insure it can be transmitted 
electronically, and formatted and read by MS Office, regarless of how it was originally 
created.  Similarly, it is the responsibility of all staff to be able to read documents created 
by MS Office.


1.   MS Office is the industry and marketplace leader in office suite software.  

2.   MS Office  is much more in demand in the workforce outside the college, which 
means new employees are 
more like to have MS Office skills than skill with other packages.

3.   The future of the Corel office suite is unclear given the number of times 
WordPerfect has been sold recently 
and the patchwork nature of the other parts of the suite.

4.   There is more MS Word and MS Office currently in use at NVCC than 
WordPerfect 6.x+ or the Corel Suite.

5.   The MS Office Suite is more complete for the money since it contains a data-base 

6.   There is still great interest and loyalty to WordPerfect 6.1 and it is compatible with 
MS Word; however, the rest of the Corel Office Suite is not popular, so choosing the 
Corel Office Suite is not practical.

7.   Use of pre-Windows versions of WordPerfect (5.1 or earlier) is no longer feasible.

Proposal for Voice Mail Pilot Test

Arguments against voice mail

It is impersonal; people do not like talking to machines
It is expensive; answering machines are cheaper
It is wasteful; several people can share answering machines
Call-forwarding can be used to make sure phones are answered, even when phone is in use

Arguments for voice mail

Many College offices already use answering machines throughout the day
Voice mail is less impersonal than an answering machine
Since answering machines serve multiple users, it requires that someone listen to the 
messages and write them down (which is little better than the current system of 
written phone messages)
Voice mail allows users to be more responsive by giving them the details of a missed call 
without playing phone tag to find out what the original call was about, then having 
to call back later with a response.
When phones are transferred, it is often to someone with no special knowledge who can 
only take a message and not really help the caller
Voice mail allows an option to transfer to a person, answering machines do not
Voice mail takes messages while a person is on the phone, answering machines do not, so 
there are fewer missed calls
Voice mail is more accurate than hand written messages
Voice mail can save users a tremendous amount of time and effort
Voice mail creates a better image of the College than leaving messages with someone who 
is "only taking messages" or using an answering machine that serves many people.


     Bell Atlantic       $  6.83/mo per line*     $ 81.96/yr per line
     GTE            $ 10.95/mo per line $131.40/yr per line

          *plus initiation fee


     Light for existing phone                     $ 20 -30/phone
     Feature Phone with light                $  74 list price
     Speaker Phone with light and features
          (for administrators)               $ 157 list price


     Six month pilot
     Participants pay from their own budgets
          Bell Atlantic (approx. $ 51/line)
          GTE  (approx. $81/line)
     Participants purchase light or phone

Information Technology Committee Minutes
November 22, 1996
Page 12

ITC Minutes Index

This page maintained by Steven G. Sachs, Associate Dean for Information Technology
Last update: 12/4/96