Update from the CIO November 2017

Picture of a pumpkin which evokes thoughts of FallIt has been quite some time since I managed to get out an update from the CIO.  Now I have a backlog of things to write about.  So here goes…

As usual, the team at CIS worked hard over the summer to prepare for the new academic year and to complete projects.  Every summer we share our top goals with Cabinet and that helps to map out our work for the year.  This year’s full list is in our article on  CIS goals for 2017-2018, but in this update I’d like to highlight:

  • Secure computing
  • Transition of services to TCC IT
  • Accessibility

Secure Computing

It is a cliche, but worth repeating, that secure computing is a constantly evolving journey rather than a fixed state.  The topic seems to grow more important by the year, and once again, security was the number one IT issue in the Educause annual top ten. In CIS we are constantly discussing how to achieve a balance between security and convenience. This year, we have a number of initiatives going that will enhance overall security, without being too much of an imposition on your daily workflow.  For example, we have some user training available through LawRoom and, to guide the roll out of this training, we are using the results of a data mapping project we did a couple of years ago.  That way, we hope to ensure that those who handle sensitive data have access to the training first.  Other security efforts include deploying two factor authentication and ensuring that hard drives are encrypted. You can read in more detail about this in our article here.


Transition of services to TCC IT

In January I wrote about the the changing landscape of IT at the Claremont Colleges and talked about a number of initiatives aimed at appropriate centralization.  We have since moved both CINE networking and HMC networking over to CUC under the auspices of TCC IT, which is led by Chuck Thompson, CIO at CUC.   The Computing Committee met with Chuck in October and learned about the governance structure and operations at TCC IT.  The transition was successfully completed in August.  HMC users should still contact the CIS Help Desk as always, and CIS staff will work directly with TCC IT.  This is basically the arrangement we always had internally in CIS.   If you’d like to read more about the transition and some of the achievements of TCC IT, please see our article on the Networking Services transfer to TCC IT.


The College’s accessibility taskforce worked continuously over the summer and into the Fall on many parts of the accessibility initiative.  A team of students at CIS converted many PDFs from the main college website into native WordPress format (WordPress is the software on which the HMC website is built).  CIS is working closely with the Marketing and Communications to implement the provisions in the College’s accessibility policy and to ensure that web content editors have all the training and resources they need.  If you are interested in creating accessible content, CIS provides consulting services to support you.  Details about that are on our service catalog page.


There are  some other articles to you may be interested in:

  • There are some new faces in User Services at CIS: Meet our User Services Team
  • And we have just welcomed a new Instructional Designer, Dr. Yi Luo, in our Educational Technology Services unit.  Watch for an article introducing her.
  • If you are interested in getting free access to Autodesk products, you’ll want to read Autodesk and HMC

At this time of year, I’m thankful for the great team at CIS and we at CIS are thankful for the great HMC community.  With that, it only remains for me to wish you and your families a Happy Thanksgiving!

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