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    Publication Date: 
    2016-04

    Ian Parberry, professor of computer science and engineering, was named a 2015 Distinguished Scientist by the Association for acm logoComputing Machinery, the world's leading association of computing professionals.

    Distinguished members were drawn from leading academic institutions and corporate and national research labs around the world. Parberry is the author of more than 100 technical publications and has taught game programming to undergraduates since 1993, the year he established UNT's top-ranked Laboratory for Recreational Computing.

    The ACM Distinguished Member program, initiated in 2006, recognizes those members with at least 15 years of professional experience who have made significant accomplishments or achieved a significant impact on the computing field.

    Parberry is also an artist known for his ASCII art. In 2008, Max Kazemzadeh and Ian Parberry created and exhibited a digital media art installation Max is a Pushover at the University of North Texas Artspace in Fort Worth, Texas. The UNT Artspace gallery was open from September 2005 through March 2008 and was host to 11 avant-garde exhibitions. Max is a Pushover is a digital fusion of real space with virtual space.

    Parberry's current research interests are clustered around game development, ranging fromprocedural content generation to cognitive assessment of video gameplay using research methods from neuropsychology. He is assisted in his research by an able team of Ph.D. students whose eight alumni include Zoran Obradovicnow the Laura H. Carnell Professor of Data Analytics and full professor in the Department of Computer and Information sciences at Temple University, Timothy Rodennow an associate professor in the Department of Computer Science at Lamar University, and Jonathon Dorannow an assistant professor in the Department of Computer and  Information Science at Bradley University.

    Parberry's research is enriched by past and present interdisciplinary collaborations that include Dr. Ki Yin Chang, professor in the Department of Merchant Marine at the National Taiwan Ocean University, Max B. Kazemzadeh, associate professor in the Department of Art, Communication and Theater and director of the Art and Media Design Program at Gallaudet University, and Thomas D. Parsons, Fellow of the National Academy of Neuropsychology; associate professor in the Department of Psychology and director of UNT's Clinical Neuropsychology and Simulation Laboratory.


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    Publication Date: 
    2016-04

    Presented by the Center for Learning Advancement and Redesign


    April 22, 2016

    Agenda:  University Forum on Teaching & Learning

    8:30-10:30 a.m. Breakfast will be provided.

    University Union, Room 314 AB

    Keynote Address: Making Learning Visible by

    Alan November, senior partner and founder, November Learning

     

    One of the most powerful and immediate concepts that can empower both educators and students is to apply emerging tools to make thinking visible in new ways and new patterns. According to renowned leader in educational technology Alan November, "When educators can really see the thinking of their students, they can more accurately provide their students with the support and encouragement they need to be successful."

    In his keynote address for the 2016 University Forum on Teaching and Learning, November will demonstrate how technology can help educators truly make learning visible.

    For example, using a tool called Prism, http://prism.scholarslab.org, attendees will contribute to a visualization exercise revealing their collective attitudes about using technology in the classroom. Join us for an upbeat and practical event that can open new windows into students' thinking.


    Register today!

    Register online: https://clear.unt.edu/uftl-2016-registration

     

     

     


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    Publication Date: 
    2016-04

    future of technology survey

    Have you noticed the new posters around campus inviting students to participate in the Future of Technology Survey?

    University Information Technology, the Office of Data, Analytics and Institutional Research and CLEAR have entered into a joint project to support UNT’s participation in a national survey March 21-April 24 asking undergraduates about technology in their lives. Conducted by the Center for Analysis and Research of EDUCAUSE®, the survey will help educators and administrators at UNT to better understand how undergraduate students experience technology at UNT and the ways in which new, better or more technology can impact student success. 

    Faculty members were asked to encourage their undergraduates to complete the voluntary, anonymous survey. Participating students in the approximately 20-minute survey will be eligible to win a $50 or $100 gift card to Amazon.com.  Overseeing the project at UNT are Patrick Pluscht, associate vice provost for learning enhancement, CLEAR; Jason Simon, associate vice provost, Ah Ra Cho, data analyst, and Russell Ruffu, data analyst, from ODAIR; and Elizabeth Hinkle-Turner, principal investigator, UIT.

    This year's study explores technology ownership, use patterns and expectations as they relate to the student experience. The results of this study can be used to engage students better in the learning process, said Hinkle-Turner, director, instructional IT services in the University IT department.

    Furthermore, institutions can use the data to improve IT services, increase technology-enabled productivity, prioritize strategic contributions of IT to higher education, plan for technology shifts that impact students, and become more technologically competitive among peer institutions. Next year, UNT plans to participate in the undergraduate study again, said Hinkle-Turner, along with a similar faculty study that has been conducted nationally in the past.

    Although UNT did not participate last year, the national results of the 2015 student and faculty studies can be found online. UNT's participation in this year's research study was reviewed and approved by the UNT Institutional Review Board, Hinkle-Turner said, and results are expected later this year. 

    EDUCAUSE is a nonprofit association and the foremost community of IT leaders and professionals committed to advancing higher education with offices in Louisville, Colo., and Washington, D.C.

    CLEAR is UNT's Center for Learning Enhancement, Assessment and Redesign that provides services to assist faculty with the development and delivery of distributed learning at UNT. The center combines technology resources with expert consultation and personnel in course design and redesign, assessment, pedagogy and many other topics to provide faculty with "one-stop" support for creating quality courses for all instructional delivery methods.

     

    Editor's Note: Please note that information in each edition of Benchmarks Online is likely to change or degrade over time, especially links to various websites. For current information on a specific topic, search the UNT website, UNT's UIT Help Desk or the World Wide Web. Email your questions and comments to the UNT University Information Technology Department or call 940-565-4068. 


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  • 06/07/16--08:02: UIT Reading List
  • Publication Date: 
    2016-06

    Send in your reading list to share; suggestions may be education- or tech-related – or not.

    photo of computer mouse and books

    June 2016

    Name of Contributor  |  Name of Reading Material 

    Anonymous: Magic and Loss: The Internet as Art, by Virginia Heffernan 

    Jeff Anderson, systems administrator, CWS: Warhammer 40K Story Expansions

    Jacob Flores, manager, host computing user services, UIT: The Stormlight Archive, series by Brandon Sanderson

    Bill Gates, technical advisor, Microsoft: Hyperbole and a Half, by Allie BroshThe Magic of Reality, by Richard DawkinsWhat If?, by Randall MunroeOn Immunity, by Eula BissHow to Lie With Statistics, by Darrell Huff; and Should We Eat Meat?, by Vaclav Smil.

    Jennifer Lee, IT manager and director, student success technology, UIT: Top 100 literary classics 

    Jennifer Spillman, IT programmer/analyst, UIT: "Health Informatics for Medical Librarians," by Ana D. Cleveland and Donald B. Cleveland, and "No Excuses: The True Story of a Congenital Amputee Who Became a Champion in Wrestling and in Life," by Kyle Maynard

    Jonathan Starkweather, research and statistical support consultant, UIT: The Lady Tasting Tea: How Statistics Revolutionized Science in the 20th Century, by David Salsburg

     

    Editor's Note: Please note that information in each edition of Benchmarks Online is likely to change or degrade over time, especially links to various websites. For current information on a specific topic, search the UNT website, UNT's UIT Help Desk or the World Wide Web. Email your questions and comments to the UNT University Information Technology Department or call 940-565-4068.


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    Publication Date: 
    2016-06

    reef polling iclicker logo

    UNT Purchases Site License to REEF Polling

    By Jane Himmel, associate director, Center for Learning Enhancement, Assessment and Redesign

    REEF Polling by i>clicker replaces Turning Point as UNT’s centrally supported student response system, effective with the fall 2016 semester.

    photo of an iclicker

    UNT has purchased a site license to REEF Polling by i<Clicker, a mobile engagement platform that enables faculty to increase class participation and gather instant feedback by sending polling questions to students’ devices. Students respond with their smartphone, tablet, or laptop and can review session history on their REEF account outside of class. 

    With this purchase of a REEF Polling site license, UNT is providing this software to every student free of charge. 

    Effective with the fall 2016 semester, REEF Polling will replace Turning Point as UNT’s centrally supported student-response system.

    During the spring 2016 semester, a faculty-led committee thoroughly evaluated and tested leading student-response systems in an effort to recommend a replacement for Turning Point 5, which the company had announced it would soon stop supporting. The committee recommended adoption of REEF Polling citing ease-of-use, integration with Blackboard and top-notch support, among other factors.

    Training on REEF Polling for faculty began on June 1, 2016 and continues throughout the summer in both face-to-face and webinar formats.

    For webinar times and dates, please visit our GoToTraining session list to register. http://bit.ly/25q4aFt

    For in-person sessions, please RSVP via this Qualtrics survey:  http://bit.ly/1U0to27 

    Additionally, REEF offers an Instructor Quick Start Guide, a Syllabus Template, and a First Day of Class Template, all designed to help make the transition easy for faculty. 

    For more information, go to http://clear.unt.edu/reef, or call Kathy Roberts, instructional technology training and support, 940-369-5201.

     Reef Education logo

     

    Editor's Note: Please note that information in each edition of Benchmarks Online is likely to change or degrade over time, especially links to various websites. For current information on a specific topic, search the UNT website, UNT's UIT Help Desk or the World Wide Web. Email your questions and comments to the UNT University Information Technology Department or call 940-565-4068.


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    Publication Date: 
    2016-06
    NASA space image of a nebula

    UNT's Sky Theater Touts Cool Technology and Temperatures in the Mean Green Universe

    The stars at night are big and bright deep in the heart of... the UNT Environmental Education, Science and Technology Building! Escape the Texas heat this summer on a cosmic safari in the comfort of the 70-degree zone of the UNT Sky Theater– without having to go through the 36,000 miles-per-hour space launch.

    Randall Peters working the Digistar computerRandall Peters, planetarium manager since it opened in 1998, uses advanced computer graphics technologies to teach, engage and entertain UNT and K-12 students as well as members of the general public year round with the help of the Digistar 5 computer system. The Sky Theater serves as a lab for about 1,500 UNT non-science major astronomy students each semester and has more than 25,000 visitors each year.

    Made by Evans and Sutherland Computer Corp., headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, the Digistar system includes real-time sequences and written curricula that illustrate and teach core astronomy concepts for students at a variety of age levels. 

    The specialized software is a combination of planetarium and 3-D animation software applications. In real time, it can take you from the UNT campus to the edge of the known universe in only a few minutes. With a revolutionary and patented approach to real-time, and a full-dome 3-D operation, the Digistar 5 system provides accurate wrap-around stereo imagery regardless of where you look in the dome – even behind you. 

    Focusing primarily on digital planetariums and digital cinemas worldwide, Evans and Sutherland Computer Corp., founded by computer imagery pioneers David C. Evans and Ivan Sutherland, is recognized as the world's first and leading digital planetarium system providers, Peters said. The full-dome programs and production services, giant screen films formatted for full-dome theaters, premium-quality projection domes, and theater design services make it top in the industry. Known also as the world's first computer graphics company as well as a pioneer in the domain of computer-generated imagery, E&S has developed advanced computer graphics technologies since 1968. 

    Through the magic of technology along with the help of Peters and his four student workers, visitors "fly" around the surface of Earth and other planets and moons in the solar system for spectacular high-resolution detail and 3-D terrain. Digistar provides smooth transitions between lower-resolution textures for more distant viewing and high-resolution textures for close fly-overs. The high-resolution textures do not “tile” or page in as they do on the internet or with other systems. Peters defines the area of the planetarium visitors' interstellar flight path and preloads the needed high-resolution textures for seamless travel from space to a few thousand feet above the ground. 

    photo of sky theater interiorThe system has real-time volumetric rendering capabilities, and fly-around views of 3-D models of Hubble Space Telescope objects, making it useful for instructors to deliver lessons in a way that engages students, Peters said. 

    The Sky Theater is located in a 2,500 square foot space with 100 seats arranged in a unidirectional orientation with a 40-foot-dome screen made from perforated aluminum panels that are suspended from the ceiling. A small admission fee to the presentations helps defray the $5,000 fee to clean the dome and staff the events, Peters said.

    Two high-definition video projectors, made by Barco, a global technology company in Belgium, are located in the center of the theater. Each projector covers half of the dome through the use of ultra-wide fisheye lenses for the most razor-sharp, stable and high contrast images possible. The projectors have a resolution of 2560 x 1600 pixels with 4,000 lumens and can cover the dome with 4.5 megapixels. A megapixel, MP, is a unit of graphic resolution equivalent to one million or (strictly) 1,048,576 (220) pixels). The emphasis is not on the technology, Peters said, but on flexible storytelling tools to customize presentations to any audience. 

    At its heart, the Digistar 5 is powered by three Dell Precision T7610 computers. Each computer has dual Intel Xeon E5-2620 CPUs running at 2.00 GHz and 1TB hard drive. One computer serves as the host of the system and stores the Digistar 5 software; the other two power the video projectors and serve as graphic processors with Radeon R9 280x graphic cards that have 3GB DDR5 memory.

    The UNT Astronomy Department's laboratory program's facilities under Ronald DiIulio, astronomy lab director, also include the Monroe Remote Observatory, located 50 miles north of UNT's main campus, as well as the digital Sky Theater, and the Rafes Urban Astronomy Center, west of Denton near the Denton Municipal Airport. Aerial view of the Rafes Astronomy Center

    Cosmic Safari Show

    The search for life in the universe begins as you travel to yet undiscovered planets in the far reaches of space. In differing environmental conditions, you'll discover what living creatures might look like on worlds very different from our own. Cosmic Safari transforms scientific theory into exotic worlds filled with fantastic creatures never before imagined.

    Cosmic Safari: Saturdays, 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.

    Ticket Prices: Students with ID and Children under 12: $3  |   UNT Employees and Senior Citizens: $4  |   Adults: $5 

    NOTE: Cash only – credit, debit cards are not accepted.

    First Saturday Sky Theater / Star Party (Observatory) Combination Deal

    Students with ID and Children under 12: $7  |   UNT Employees and Senior Citizens: $8  |   Adults: $9

    Peters has produced several of the planetarium’s presentations, which were customized for the Sky Theater’s unique audiences including university students enrolled in the UNT astronomy program, public and private school children and the general public.

    A Texas Tech graduate, Peters spent 10 years at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History before coming to UNT to assist in the opening of the Sky Theater. During that time, he worked as a planetarium production specialist and manager at the museum’s Noble Planetarium as well as an IMAX projectionist at the Omni Theater. He also has worked with several national traveling exhibitions such as Soviet Space, The Treasures of Catherine the Great and The Dinosaurs of Jurassic Park. 

    For information about group reservations and star parties, visit the Sky Theater online or contact Randall Peters. 

     

    Editor's Note: Please note that information in each edition of Benchmarks Online is likely to change or degrade over time, especially links to various websites. For current information on a specific topic, search the UNT website, UNT's UIT Help Desk or the World Wide Web. Email your questions and comments to the UNT University Information Technology Department or call 940-565-4068. 


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    Publication Date: 
    2016-06

    Photograph of Jennifer SpillmanJennifer Spillman, originally from the Buckeye State, is an IT programmer analyst in UIT's Student Success Technology Services office located in Sage Hall. An alumna of UNT, Spillman is looking forward to her second UNT graduation in December with the Master of Science in Information Science and Health Informatics.

    Delighted to welcome a certain new UNT student this fall, Spillman's daughter Makenzie will be in the Honors College majoring in new media art.

    At Makenzie's recent high school graduation, Spillman said she was asked why she was makenzie and jennifer spillman photographnot upset or sad, and replied that she gets to be closer to her daughter while she attends UNT. Whenever Makenzie needs anything, she knows where to find mom. "That gives me peace of mind, and I am so happy I did not have to send her far away," Spillman said.

    As a Salesforce software administrator, Spillman helps to streamline and improve student advising by designing and implementing Salesforce Service Cloud and Console to 10 academic advising offices. The Salesforce console is designed to boost productivity in fast-paced service and sales/recruiting environments. 

    So, what is salesƒorce.com, inc.

    It is a $6.6 billion corporation headquartered in San Francisco that was founded in 1999 by several former PeopleSoft employees. Its stock, CRM, is about $83.57 on the New York Stock Exchange. Salesforce also is the name given to the company's customer relationship management products, such as Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Marketing Cloud, Force.com, Chatter and Work.com.

    Spillman maintains UNT's version of the Salesforce for higher education configuration and provides consistent, ongoing functional business processes and knowledge for university recruitment, enrollment, admissions and advising. Read more about UNT's Salesforce project expansion in this edition of Benchmarks Online.

    In June 2014, Spillman knew nothing about Salesforce other than its $56 stock price, she said.

    "When John Hooper, former UNT CIO and vice provost for information technology, approached me with the opportunity to work with Salesforce, I jumped at the prospect of working with a new and unique project," she said.

    Currently, Spillman provides end-user training for all UNT super-users in the advising offices and helps them to learn the report functionality in the software. Before that, Spillman first had to build the customized case layout for the Division of Student Affairs. She also helped with the rollout for the Office of Admissions and University Relations, Communications and Marketing to provide UNT with a better way to manage and track interactions with approximately 30,000 undergraduate and 7,000 graduate students.

    salesforce workflow process schematic

    Designing custom security, role hierarchy, user profiles and permission sets in the current Salesforce organization is a big portion of Spillman's focus. She also works with the IT Shared Services Directory Services office to connect and enable single-sign-on capabilities in the Salesforce organization to LDAP, an industry standard application protocol for accessing and maintaining distributed directory information services over an Internet protocol network. In general, people do not like remembering multiple usernames and passwords, she said, and single sign on, SSO, enables end users to sign into Salesforce with their UNT employee user identification, EUID, and network password.

    "The best thing about working in IT is that technology is always changing. I love the challenge of learning new things and streamlining into a business process. I love empowering my end users to make their jobs more efficient," Spillman said. "My favorite part about working at UNT is the close-knit community. I have always found that most people I work around really care about each other. UNT also fosters a family-friendly work environment." 

    As a Salesforce administrator, Spillman has attended hours of training for Salesforce, including the following courses. 

    • Salesforce - Administration Essentials for New Admins
    • Salesforce - Building Application with Force.com
    • Demand Tools MassImpact
    • Demand Tools MassEffect
    • Demand Tools PowerGrid
    • Demand Tools Single Table Dedupe
    • Demand Tools Find/Report IDs

    Wait. What? Let us pause here for a moment – and a definition. The word of the day has to be dedupe. Did you catch that word? RUKM? Ok, so maybe it is new to only a few of us.

    Deduping: de-duplication, a batch process that can be done on huge lists of words; a specialized data compression technique for eliminating duplicate copies of repeating data.

    Spillman frequently takes part in double- and triple-geeking, too, of course. Don't you just love 21st-century lexicon? Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah, Zip-A-Dee-A!

     

    schematic of the de-duplication process 

    Moving on. 

    Born and raised in the Rose City of Springfield, Ohio, west of Columbus, Spillman is accomplished, talented and comes from a photo of the springfield, ohio skylineproud heritage in Ohio. Also from Springfield are famous jazz musicians, such as Johnny Lytle, and Call Cobbs Jr.; Hollywood legends Lillian Gish and Jonathan Winters; and sports figures Will McEnaney, a left-handed World Series pitcher among others, and now, of course, technology guru, Jennifer Spillman.

    photo of iphone with 7 minute workout app on itLeaving Ohio in 2006, her husband's job brought the Spillman family of five, two boys and one girl, to Texas. A running and swimming enthusiast, Spillman's favorite app is Apple Health to track her 10,000+ steps a day. She uses the 7 Minute Workout Challenge app to sneak in a workout in the middle of the day. Spillman also enjoys home improvement projects, such as tiling, painting, wood-working and furniture restoration. 

    This summer you will find Spillman perusing her graduate course textbook, "Health Informatics for Medical Librarians,"by Ana D. Cleveland and Donald B. Cleveland, and "No Excuses: The True Story of a Congenital Amputee Who Became a Champion in Wrestling and in Life,"by Kyle Maynard.

    Editor's Note: Please note that information in each edition of Benchmarks Online is likely to change or degrade over time, especially links to various websites. For current information on a specific topic, search the UNT website, UNT's UIT Help Desk or the World Wide Web. Email your questions and comments to the UNT University Information Technology Department or call 940-565-4068. 

     


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    Publication Date: 
    2016-06

    People in the Zone focus on Jeff AndersonJeff Anderson works for UNT System's Central Web Services as a systems administrator while also studying toward a degree in computer engineering.

    A self-described PC/Linux man, Anderson said his main focus at work is on the back end of websites. He maintains the UNT content management system, and verifies that UNT services are up and running, he said. On Wednesday mornings, you may find Anderson in the Business Leadership Building, Room 115, for CWS office hours to provide UNT web support. He and members of the University Relations, Communications and Marketing web team take questions from website coordinators who come from all departments of the university seeking website development and Drupal content management system answers and expertise.

    "I always have been interested in computers, but I would say a major influence has been my older brother Allan Anderson," a 2012 UNT graduate who now works as a penetration tester at Apple headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., Anderson said.

    He works on deploying new servers and likes where he works.

    "There is a welcoming feeling here. When I come into work, it feels like an extension of myself – very fluid," said Anderson, a native Dentonite, talking about his favorite part about working at the UNT System office at Discovery Park.

    An incoming website request will hit the caching server, which speeds up the content delivery, then it sends the request back to the Apache, PHP and SQL servers. Depending on the type of request, the pages then are served to the end user. "My job is making sure this process continues to work and the content is served as smoothly as possible," he said.

    As the appointed lead of the UNT System Website Development Team in support of UNT System's new website, Anderson also creates the website's sitemap, content types and roles. The development team provides architecture assistance to help web users fluidly navigate the site, he said.

    While it may be the hardest part, the best part about working in information technology also would be the constant changes in the field, Anderson said. Always being able to learn new technologies is the without a doubt the best, he said. Learning coding in my computer science, CSCE 1030 and 1040, has been my favorite learning experience so far, Anderson said, in classes taught by Professor David Keathly, science senior lecturer and undergraduate advisor in the UNT Computer Science and Engineering Department.

    During his free time Anderson works on side projects, such as robotics; he is the founding vice president of the UNT Robotics Club. The robot pictured below is controlled through Wi-Fi and a PlayStation 4 controller and can be seen in an online video demonstration. A phone's accelerometer data also can be used to drive the robot, Anderson said, and it is programmed to follow a tennis ball or a face using OpenCV.

    Jeff Anderson with a robot

    AdAway, an ad blocker that uses the hosts file, is Anderson's favorite app in his Android smart phone, he said, because it filters hosts and gets rid of annoying advertisements.

    photo of ad away appAnderson's summer reading list includes Warhammer 40K stories, a tabletop miniature wargame produced by Games Workshop, set in a dystopian science fantasy universe, and looking for a story better than "A Song of Ice and Fire," a series of epic fantasy novels by the American novelist and screenwriter George R.R. Martin.

    Editor's Note: Please note that information in each edition of Benchmarks Online is likely to change or degrade over time, especially links to various websites. For current information on a specific topic, search the UNT website, UNT's UIT Help Desk or the World Wide Web. Email your questions and comments to the UNT University Information Technology Department or call 940-565-4068. 

     


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    Publication Date: 
    2016-06

    Photo of Jennifer LeeUNT alumna, English teacher, adjunct faculty, writer, scholar, prolific reader, technophile and Mac aficionado, Jennifer Lee is all that and a bag of chips. She is accomplished and busy. And, to make her absolutely perfect, her heart belongs to a darling 10-pound Havanese. 

    Lee also happens to be the director and IT manager of Student Success Technology Services for University Information Technology located in Sage Hall.  

    To support to the mission and goals of student success technology initiatives at UNT, Lee designs, plans and implements technology solutions based on functional user needs. In particular, she uses the Salesforce customer relationship management software to help the University of North Texas create a 360-degree view of the student experience. Read more about UNT's Salesforce project in this edition of Benchmarks Online.logo of salesforce in higher education

    Hired in 2003, Lee started her career at UNT as an academic advisor in the College of Education where she became interested in computer technology while she had her first involvement in a CRM project. She was the assistant director of academic services at the college for eight years before joining the team in University Information Technology.

    photo of a Havanese dogLee received her first bachelor’s degree in education where she majored in teaching of English as a second language at the University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Upon graduation, she worked as an instructional designer and corporate trainer for two years before attending UNT as a non-traditional student. She received her second bachelor’s degree in computer science and went on to complete a master’s degree in computer education and cognitive systems with an emphasis on instructional design. In 2012, Lee completed the Doctor of Philosophy in Learning Technologies. She is certified as an instructional designer, trainer and workplace assessor in competency-based training and education by the Department for Employment Training and Further Education, South Australia, and holds a lifetime K-12 English teaching certification.

    "The best part of working in IT is that I am always learning new things. I love all things technology and it is natural that I gravitate toward IT," Lee said. Her favorite part about working at UNT is that there is always room to grow whether it is in an academic or professional capacity.

    photo of whats app on an iphone"My favorite app on my phone is WhatsApp. I have kept in touch with my childhood and college friends, and former colleagues. I have known some of them for more than 30 years. I get daily messages through the app and cannot ask for a better way to stay in touch with the people who I care about," Lee said.

    WhatsApp is a proprietary cross-platform, encrypted, instant-messaging client for smartphones. It uses the internet to send text messages, documents, images, video, user location and audio messages to other users using standard cellular mobile numbers. As of February 2016, WhatsApp had a user base of one billion, making it the most popular messaging application. WhatsApp Inc., based in Mountain View, Calif., was acquired by Facebook Inc. on Feb. 19, 2014, for approximately $19.3 billion.

    As for her reading tastes, Lee goes paperless all the way using her Kindle Voyage, to help her achieve her lofty and admirable reading goal. She has set out to finish reading all of the literary works on the list of the 100 greatest novels of all time

    "My first love always has been literary classics. I was a voracious reader as a kid and I use to speed read my way through a book each day," she said. Lee recently finished "Fahrenheit 451," by Ray Bradbury, "Things Fall Apart," by Chinua Achebe, and "The Rainbow," by D.H. Lawrence.

    Currently, she is in the throes of the "Prime of Miss Jean Brodie," by Muriel Spark. You can catch the 1969-movie version starring Maggie Smith, if you prefer.

     

    Editor's Note: Please note that information in each edition of Benchmarks Online is likely to change or degrade over time, especially links to various websites. For current information on a specific topic, search the UNT website, UNT's UIT Help Desk or the World Wide Web. Email your questions and comments to the UNT University Information Technology Department or call 940-565-4068. 


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    Publication Date: 
    2016-06
    logo of salesforce logo

    Beyond Academic Advising: UNT Expands Student Success Technology to Admissions, UNT-International and URCM

    By Jennifer Lee, IT manager and director for Student Success Technology Services, UIT  |  April 2015 Salesforce article

    On May 10, 2016, UNT launched a new chapter in its vision to create a 360-degree view of the student experience. The offices of undergraduate and graduate admissions, UNT–International, and University Relations, Communications and Marketing took campus recruitment and marketing initiatives to new heights by becoming the latest members of the campus Salesforce family. The strategic move will help the University of North Texas create a connected college experience for the student lifecycle.

    The project launch was a culmination of months of work for the Salesforce cross-functional project team that included the leadership and key members from Admissions, URCM, Academic Advising, UNT–International, Student Success Technology Services, University Information Technology and UNT System IT Shared Services. 

    logo of target xTwo implementation partners also were involved in the project. The group worked with TargetX based in Conshohocken, Pa., one of the leading higher education customer relationship management companies, to build its recruitment platform in Salesforce. Also, the group collaborated with DEG based in Overland Park, Kansas, a digital agency purpose-built to meet clients with data-driven marketing, commerce and collaboration solutions to implement a comprehensive, multi-channel marketing strategy plan driven by data analytics.

    Regarding recruitment, Salesforce will help UNT manage prospective students, schools, campaigns, events and all engagement with future students in one system. It will improve outreach efforts by providing better data intelligence. The recruitment solution also offers predictive intelligence on yield efforts.

    When it comes to marketing initiatives, the university will use its marketing tools to move potential students along the recruiting journey with persuasive messages about the benefits of attending UNT. The CRM software also allows personalization of each message based on the interests of the prospective student while tracking the effectiveness of its marketing strategies.

    As more higher education institutions have turned to CRM solutions to manage the student lifecycle, from prospective students to alumni, the move has created an opportunity for campus users to share and use student data in ways that were not possible before. With UNT Academic Advising at the helm of the first wave of deployment a year earlier, Salesforce enabled advising offices on campus to share notes as well as develop strategies to promote student success and student engagement. With the recent additions of recruitment and marketing applications on the same platform, UNT can use Salesforce as a blueprint for academic excellence whether it is tracking recruitment, advising, retention or student data. 

    Project Team Role

    Name

    Sponsor

    Neal Smatresk

    Steering Committee

    Shannon Goodman, Rebecca Lothringer, Deborah Leliaert, Kenn Moffitt, Phillip Baczewski, Kem Marcum, Mike McKay

    Project Manager

    Schenita (Shay) Floyd

    Business / Functional Leads

    Shannon Goodman, Rebecca Lothringer, Deborah Leliaert, Kenn Moffitt, Phillip Baczewski, Mike McKay, Jeri Takimoto, Pieter Vermeulen, Dana Mordecai

    Technical Architect

    Martin (Marty) Miller

    Technical Leads

    Kem Marcum and Monika Botha

    Programmer/Developers

    Kok Chuan Koh, John Dysart, Rachel Richey

    Business/Functional Team

    Maureen Saringer, Craig Howard, Jennifer Lee, Jennifer Spillman, Austin Milner, Dickie Hargrave, Madison Davis

    Salesforce Systems Administrators

    Jennifer Lee, Jennifer Spillman

    Vendors

    DEG, Salesforce, TargetX

    Vendor Project Manager

    Liz Sullivan, DEG, and Creighton Dent, TargetX

    Vendor Implementation Consultant

    Kristen Hewlett, DEG, and James Seymour, TargetX

     

     

    Editor's Note: Please note that information in each edition of Benchmarks Online is likely to change or degrade over time, especially links to various websites. For current information on a specific topic, search the UNT website, UNT's UIT Help Desk or the World Wide Web. Email your questions and comments to the UNT University Information Technology Department or call 940-565-4068.


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