CSU saved $100M and gained benefits with greater security and in expanding cloud service offerings by replacing existing Cisco system

  • Country: United States Of America
  • Industry: Education
  • Solution: Data Center

California State University system makes up the largest four-year university system in the U.S. With over 20 campuses statewide servicing nearly 500,000 users, the CSU Chancellors Office saved hundreds of millions of dollars by laying a strategic technology path that was also a key enabler to student success.

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The long-term investment with Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise has returned more benefit than the initial $100M in savings. ALE networking and network management solutions have removed the guess work from the efforts of CSU, helping reinvest and evolve services that are enabling educational success, now and well into the future.

Michel Davidoff, Cyberinfrastructure CSU Chancellors Office

Challenges

  • CSU’s objective was to create a reliable, flexible network and found over $100 million in savings in infrastructure costs. Standardizing on one vendor and unifying management simplified IT operations.
  • Phase I of CSU’s investment enabled the university system to create better security, enable anywhere accessible Wi-Fi and open shared services via the cloud to improve the overall campus experience.
  • Phase II saved well beyond the initial $100M. In creating an expansive technology infrastructure, CSU enabled greater educational success, and delivery on the university’s Graduation Initiative 2025.

Products & Solutions
Benefits

User Experience Benefits:

  • CSU’s approach encouraged innovation, removed barriers that impede student success and resulted in creating wider services for students. CSU IT achieved key priorities to support the state’s Graduation Initiative (GI) 2025, increasing graduation rates for all CSU students while eliminating gaps in opportunity and achievement.

Technical Benefits:

  • Centralized management, standardized technology, and enhanced security with Universal Network Profile (uNP) - all while reducing operational complexities, with Alcatel-Lucent OmniVista Network Management System (NMS)
  • Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise Virtual Chassis technology supports a high level of redundancy that is built into the network architecture, creating an exceedingly reliable network for 500K+ users.
  • With the expansive network, CSU created the Cloud Acceleration Center focused on using cloud services and architecture. An advisory group established an “easy button” for all campus IT departments to work with AWS and Allure, while maintaining data governance policies and standards.

Financial Benefits:

  • Real cost savings translated into 250 percent more wireless access points across the 20+ campuses
  • CSU saved more by moving applications like disaster recovery, research/science projects, and more to Software as a Service (SAS) and Infrastructure as a Service to the cloud 
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