Students Trained to Help with Back-to-School Electronic Setup

Posted: August 31, 2001 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Robin Herron

Thanks to the “Get Wired” initiative sponsored by the Division of Instructional and Technology Support Services (DoIT), new and returning students are finding it easier to get electronically connected on the Fairfax Campus. Telecommunications and Support Center staff in DoIT, part of the newly reorganized Information Technology Unit, recruited and trained about 20 students who have been helping other students get settled in.

Ann Genovese, director of client services, says that last the weekend a “SWAT team” of students went through the residence halls in Presidents Park, where freshmen are housed, to help students set up their computers and get their e-mail accounts activated. Armed with cell phones, the student assistants were able to communicate with an on-site field technician to deal with tricky problems.

The assistants, who went to a one-day training session last week to prepare, have been available in the Johnson Center throughout the week to help returning students activate their e-mail and Mason accounts.

“This is the first time we’ve done this,” says Genovese. “It’s a wonderful way to reach out to the students and smooth things out for them when they’ve got so many other things to do. We’re also hoping this will off-load some of the trouble calls we get during the first week of classes, and we can devote more time to helping faculty with trouble-shooting.”

Genovese credits Kathy Gillette, manager of support services, and Doris Rollins, manager of telecommunications administration, with organizing and training the students.

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