Virginia Tech staff part of second group to win EDUCAUSE honors
Virginia Tech is part of a second group to receive a 2005 EDUCAUSE award, this one for Excellence in Information Technology Solutions.
This award “honors original and creative campus projects that apply emerging technologies to improve the scholarship, service, or management practices and policies of the institution or that have the potential for changing the technology infrastructure so that new technology solutions become possible,” according to EDUCAUSE.
The Virginia Alliance for Secure Computing and Networking (VA SCAN), with two Virginia Tech members, will receive the award at EDUCAUSE’s annual conference this October in Orlando, along with Virginia Tech’s other winning team , which will receive an award in the category of Systemic Progress in Teaching and Learning.
Virginia Tech’s VA SCAN members are A. Wayne Donald, information technology security officer, and Randy Marchany, director of the information technology security laboratory.
VA SCAN consists of members from Virginia Tech, George Mason University, James Madison University, and the University of Virginia. The group’s goal is to improve the state’s defenses against network security problems. According to EDUCAUSE, “in an excellent example of sharing best practices, tools, and personnel, the alliance brings together Virginia higher education security practitioners, who have developed and maintain widely emulated operational security programs, with researchers responsible for creating cyber security instruction and research programs that are nationally recognized for excellence.”
Services include educating staff about digital security and ways to minimize threats, providing IT security training and consultation, and maintaining Web-based security-enhancing tools. One of the things the group offers is an “ask-the-expert” email service. According to the award selection committee, “This alliance offers a model for resource sharing and collaborative problem solving and clearly addresses a critical issue with foresight and pragmatism.”
EDUCAUSE is a nonprofit association whose mission is to advance higher education by promoting the intelligent use of information technology. The EDUCAUSE annual awards recognize exemplary achievement in six areas of higher education information technology, including VA SCAN’s category of Excellence in Information Technology Solutions. This program honors prominent leaders for significant achievement and broad influence. The current membership of EDUCAUSE comprises more than 1,900 colleges, universities, and educational organizations and has 15,000 active members.