Building a better wheel - the new education network

Greg Kovich
October 11, 2018

A network that can scale quickly and is simple to manage can address the influx of BYOD and ensure students and staff stay connected.

Building a better wheel—the new education network

BYOD has created a flood of devices onto campus networks. The exponential rise in the volume of traffic—as well as the ever-growing demand for more and more bandwidth—means that networks must be easily scalable and simple to manage. However, on many campuses, clunky operational systems and antiquated reporting tools left behind from the stone age of computing are weighing down IT teams’ ability to deploy the new services and applications that students are demanding. And, to top it off network administrators are feeling the budget crunch. So the question is how do you build a better wheel without reinventing it?

Two words—simple and scalable

First, let’s talk about simplifying the network. A friend of mine, Sam, a campus network administrator shared an interesting insight with me. She knows that the school is anticipating an increase in enrollment this upcoming school year. Unfortunately, she also knows that her budget is not being increased. If statistic’s hold true, all those new students will be bringing at least two devices per person onto campus. Sam and her team are already stretched thin when it comes to both time and money. A single, converged wired and wireless network that spans departments and faculties would surely simplify things. Less equipment to manage, a reduction in day-to-day operations and consolidated reporting tools, would free up Sam and her team to deal with more complex and strategic initiatives.

Female student on mobile phone looking at tablet

A single management system for the entire network also means that network administrators can see everything at a glance, including application and network analytics. Automated configurations, onboarding of devices and guest self-registration all help to lighten the load. With profiles set up to define students and staff access, independent of where they are on campus, and policies applied to users, devices and applications, network access is easily scalable and management is simplified.

If you take it a step further, a virtualized chassis can deliver the quality service and experience that students and staff expect, including access to web-based applications and digital resources. For institutions under tight budget constraints, building intelligence and automation into the network fabric pays off by reducing complexity, and simplifying deployments. The network automatically recognizes IoT devices and can segment the traffic with minimal IT involvement to do moves/adds/changes allowing campus network administrators to scale quickly.

Learn more about how campuses are digitally transforming to meet the demands of students, staff, devices and things. Visit:

Greg Kovich

Greg Kovich

Global Sales Lead, Education Vertical

Greg Kovich leads global sales for ALE’s Education vertical.  Greg has overseen or created several Education solutions including “The Fundamentals of Communications” – a vendor neutral course on digital network communications; “Safe Campus” – a solution uniting emergency alerts with first responder collaboration and mass notification; “Secure Campus” – a solution that allows instructors to limit student network access to determined sites; and “Pandemic Education Continuity” – a solution that enables classroom instruction in the event the institution is closed due to health or environmental crisis. 

He is a 1992 graduate of Indiana University with over 20 yrs experience in Information Technology.

About the author

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