Illinois State University Information Technology (IT) professionals met in the State Farm Hall of Business on May 3, 2019, for networking, education, and recognition opportunities at the spring Continuous Improvement in Technology Extension (CITx) conference.
CITx is a half-day conference that sprung from the full-day CIT conference held each summer since 2013. CIT brings Illinois State’s over 200 IT professionals together to learn about upcoming projects and to discover collaboration opportunities.
The conference began with a networking breakfast before transitioning into a cross-campus IT news update. Associate Vice President for Enrollment Management Jana Albrecht’s keynote presentation recognized the contributions that IT staff have made allowing Illinois State University to remain strong and stable even during uncertain times for higher education broadly. Albrecht talked about how the implementation of the admissions software suite Slate has allowed professionals on campus to better reach prospective students and keep necessary data about those individuals both accessible and safe.
Following Albrecht’s talk, staff from across campus shared updates from their units. Here are some of the highlights:
- An upgrade to campus network hardware will take place on May 18 and 19, making most ISU services unavailable.
- A new and improved IT Help web site will launch in late May, including access to the knowledge base without login and easy submission of issues.
- Advice to IT staff on the new recommended standard for Office versions installed on University computers.
- The University will be moving to a new hosting provider for Campus Solutions and iPeople.
The first-ever CIT Outstanding Student MVP, Jeremiah Haywood, was honored during the news segment. The award recognizes one student employee for exceptional contributions to the customers, staff, and/or operations of their technical team. The graduate student was nominated by a number of full-time staff who pointed to Haywood’s professionalism, maturity, and outstanding contributions to the Information Security Office as reasons for recognition.
Student Affairs Information Technology (SAIT) Project Manager and CIT news emcee Dean Plumadore was given a standing ovation by the crowd during the announcement of his retirement. Plumadore said he was moved by the support of his colleagues and proud to recognize the next generation of IT professionals such as Haywood.
“Personally, I was blown away by the support and emotion following the announcement of my retirement,” he said. “That moment, with everyone clapping and cheering, was a moment to cherish and to remember how we are there for each other. This camaraderie, this team feeling, this sense of being able to solve anything with the people around me is one of the reasons why I kept coming to work each day. The people at ISU make this a wonderful place to work.”
After IT news, the group split into four Redbirds of a Feather discussion groups. Topics included everything about Apple products, automation, tips and tricks to solve common IT problems, and a presentation highlighting services that are available to our students.
CITx is sponsored by Administrative Technologies, the Office of Academic Technologies, TechZone, Student Affairs IT, and the College of Business.