This message is sent on behalf of Dean of the College Jacque Fetrow, who also chairs the IT Executive Committee (ITEC):
I’m writing to let you know the outcome of the Next Steps Initiative. We will move forward with the plan and two year pilot that has been proposed and presented in ITEC’s preliminary report distributed in January. (I thank all of you who took the time to respond to that report.) The College will move to a two-year pilot, to explore the issues associated with laptop choice and with virtualization of some parts of the software load. The university will pay for the costs of the pilot programs for both choice and virtualization. Information Systems (IS) and the College will pay for the costs of updating the standard laptop to a higher-performing model which will last for four years (if necessary).
As recommended by CIT, the faculty laptops will be moving to a four-year rotation, and will include the upgrades to the higher-performing model. More information will be coming from the IS department regarding opportunities for additional minor upgrades for faculty.
There will be no option for faculty who are not scheduled for laptop replacement this year, nor for rising sophomores or seniors, to replace their laptop with the new model. As always, there is the option for anyone to purchase the standard laptop on the Library’s “Friends and Family” web page. Any student or faculty member who does this with personal funds will not be able to access some of the standard load software, because of licensing issues.
Our next step is moving forward with “Vision 2020: A Technology Plan for Wake Forest University,” the goal of which is to consider the future of technology and computing in education at Wake Forest. You will hear more about this initiative in coming months.
I thank all of you for your feedback and active participation over the past year, as we have worked together to identify the future of the laptop program at Wake Forest.