While sitting down with Bob Snellman, IT Manager from Southern State Community College I was able to askhim a few questions about his recent Live@edu deployment at the institutions hesupports… here is what Bob had to say!
Q: Bob, can you elaborate on some basic background about SSCC?
A: Southern State Community College (SSCC) is a small junior community college in SouthernOhio. We have very limited budgets as most educational institutions dothese days. We were offering a basic email service to our students usinga third-party app. It didn’t offer a lot of options, no calendar, nochatting, no storage space, but it did email decent for students to contactteachers & vice-versa. Can’t expect a lot on a shoestringbudget. For storage space, we used Microsoft home drive/directorytechnology on Windows Server 2003. It worked well, but due to limitedstorage space, it wasn’t enough for students save all there necessary data andit was limited to only on-campus use. Anyways, there was talk about usingGoogle Apps to replace the current services. I recall Microsoft offeringsomething similar called Live@EDU. So, a committee was formed and away wewent in discussing whether to keep what we had or consider Google Apps orLive@EDU. There was an overwhelming agreement to go with Live@EDU. It seemed to be perfect timing for Live@EDU to be available while we werelooking for a replacement. I believe we met twice and then decided. It didn’t take long to choose Live@EDU. It just made sense.
Q: In regard to migration options why did SSCC pursue a fresh start?
A: We decided to start fresh with a new service and skip attempting to migrate theold system. It made the transition smooth. Of course, we gavestudents plenty of notice (4 months) that there would be no migration and theywould be responsible to save any of their data(emails, contacts, etc.) from theold system before we decommissioned it.
Q: Why did you decide on just student e-mail and not Faculty/ Staff as well?
A: Just students because we were replacing the student email system, which was verylimited, but affordable at the time. Staff/Faculty were already usingExchange 2010. So, we kept them there. Plus, it kept the cost downto “free” moving students on Live@EDU. More affordable than the oldstudent system we were offering and so much more in services. It was a“win win” solution.
Q: Overall what were some of the deciding factors as to why SSCC choose Live@edu?
A: It was 1000 times better than what we were currently offering students. We arealready using Exchange 2010 for our Staff/Faculty and Live@EDU is based on thesame technology, so there would be little issues with compatibility forstudents & teachers. We are what most would call a Microsoft shop, sochoosing Live@EDU over Google Apps, just made sense. And it was FREE!!!
How can you ignore FREE!?
We’ve had an overwhelming positive response from our students switching them to Live@EDU. Ihonestly don’t know why anyone wouldn’t move their students to Live@EDU. It just makes sense. The Live@EDU support staff was there the whole waythrough the setup process and continues to be there when I need them, which hasnot been very often. Once it is setup, it just works.
Gotta love it.