Starting in mid-September, students, staff and faculty from The University of Texas-American will be able to log in onto the Internet whether they are on campus or at South Texas College using “eduroam,” short for education roaming, a program developed for the purpose of allowing students, staff and faculty to be able to log on with their credentials at participating institutions.
“It’ll be a huge benefit for participating institutions, colleges and universities, especially us here at UTPA,” said Jeffrey Graham, chief information officer of information technology. “We’re working with STC’s information technology department to become more integrated. Both sides felt that this is something we needed to do to make working with each other easier, yet maintain the security that is necessary.”
Eduroam is a secure, worldwide roaming access service developed for the international research and education community.
This service allows students, researchers, faculty and staff from participating eduroam-enabled institutions to obtain Internet connectivity across campus and when visiting other participating institutions connected to eduroam.
“As you take your iPad, laptop or smart phone to other campuses, this program automatically allows you to take advantage of this technology because it is giving you wireless credentials you need without having to go through a huge process. It is automatic and secure and will prompt you to log on with your home school credentials.”
The eduroam principle is based on the fact that the user’s authentification is done by the user’s home institution, whereas, the authorization decision allowing access to the network is done by the visited network.
“For example, before if you were at the library at STC, you couldn’t get in to the system because you didn’t have credentials. If you want to research for something, now you will have the credentials to do so and it will be as easy as simply logging in,” Graham said.
Eduroam started in Europe and has gained momentum throughout the research and education community. It is now available in more than 54 countries.
Graham said eduroam’s popularity is quickly catching on, with several other schools already jumping onto this technology.
“The University of Texas System already has implemented eduroam, and The University of Texas at San Antonio and The University of Texas at Dallas are considering using the program," Graham said.
“Times are changing, so as we move forward, the integration between the different campuses that we work with will incorporate more of this technology,” said Graham. “It used to be a manual and lengthy process to be able to log on at another institution but technology is making this simple for you.”
For more information, contact Graham at (956) 665-7150 or visit www.eduroam.org.