By Kristine Anne M. Fernandez
SILLIMAN UNIVERSITY (SU) offers unlimited wireless internet connection (Wi-Fi) in 45 areas on campus, nine of which are made available for open access to guests.
Students, faculty, staff, and guests can now enjoy unlimited internet surfing in almost all places in the university on their laptops and gadgets on a guaranteed bandwidth of 30mbps. P300 has been charged through miscellaneous fees.
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Office of Information and Publications (OIP) Director Mark Raygan Garcia said: “What made us decide to provide Wifi to our students is the fact that majority of our students, faculty, and staff are tech savvy. Almost everyone wants to access the internet on their mobile phones or on their laptop. We also would like our students to be able to undertake research almost anywhere in the campus.”
Garcia said that this project of SU was implemented in consultation with the Student Government (SG) and the different sectors of the university due to the demand of students for an internet access in the campus. But he pointed out that just like any other projects in the university, this will be reviewed. He added that the university doesn’t only advocate research but also the development of students’ people skills which involves information exchange and flow that happen more online. Hotspots “The distribution of Wi-Fi, identification of buildings is strategic and it’s quite scientific. It is based on the concentration of students,” Garcia said. The 45 areas that require specific log-in details include the most populated buildings like;
Oriental Hall ,Ausejo Hall, College of Business Administration Building, Elementary School Building, and eight buildings in High School. The open accessed-areas are Silliman University Church Office, Uytengsu Computer Center Extension, Uytengsu Computer Center, Villareal Hall, Alumni Hall, University House, Administration Building, Instructional Media and Technology Center, and Alice Fullerton Hall. Ken Anthony Danlag, a third year Information Technology student, said that the school’s Wi-Fi is very helpful to students’ research works and assignments. He noticed, however, that some specific areas have low connectivity and some students can’t access it using their accounts.
“We are doing our best to ensure that you are able to access your internet almost everywhere in the university at a fast speed,” Garcia said.
Monitoring This project is closely supervised by the Management Information Systems (MIS) unit. Garcia said MIS is in charge of monitoring the strength of the Wi-Fi connection. He added that the university has a system which blocks pornographic websites and websites that consumes most of the connection
for downloading. Teachers are also involved in monitoring students who may be using the internet inside the classroom.
Garcia said: “There are controls in place and these controls are not necessarily online. These are the usual controls that take place in the classroom between the teacher and the students. So if you would be using your iPad or your mobile phone for reasons outside learning the lesson or participating the class, of course you’ll get reprimanded.”
Wi-Fi for everyone Even though the university is moving forward through this project, Garcia also admitted that not all in the university are fond of the cyberspace and are technology savvy.
“We’d like them [students and teachers] to embrace this kind of technology and we do understand that not everyone is into this but again it’s a teaching-learning tool,” he said.