October 20, 2015

Members present:  Judy Fredenberg, John Greer, Mark Grimes, Nick Hannifin, Art Held, Scott Holgate, Antony Jo, Roger Maclean, Karen Moore, Jesse Neidigh, Stella Phipps, Eric Reimer, Matt Riley, Manu Samuela, Jennifer Sauer, Allen Szalda-Petree

Members excused: Mark Pershouse, Dawn Ressel

Members absent:  Aaron Heiner, Ryann Carlson

Ex-officio members and staff present: Bob Hlynosky, Adrian Irish, Joe Hickman, Gordy Pace

Call to order

Allen Szalda-Petree called the meeting to order at 3:32


September meeting minutes were approved by consensus


UM Minute – IT Focus

John Greer reported that the libraries at UM, MSU and several tribal colleges are jointly in an RFP for a system to manage library collections. The goal is to select a system by the end of the year. Matt asked if the system was cloud based and if UM’s share would be 50 percent. John said the system is cloud based and UM’s share of the cost is still being negotiated.

CIO communication

Matt reported that IT Senate’s resolution that the senate would advise the CIO on management of the IT utilities budget was approved by President Engstrom with some comment by the cabinet. Vice President for Administration & Finance was concerned that IT would unilaterally drive up central costs. Matt said that the check on that is that IT doesn’t set the IT utilities allocation.

John Greer asked what the resolution meant for departments who want something to be included in IT utilities. Matt said that a process has not been put in place. There was interest from several members to look at the IT utilities budget in more detail and consider what could be added or removed. Matt agreed that we could do that at the November meeting, but suggested we limit the discussion to 20 minutes.

Matt also reported that the Executive Committee of Faculty Senate met with the cabinet. ECOS chair Bill Borrie reported that a committee was being formed to work on enrollment and suggested that IT Senate was a great model for input from and communication to faculty.

Discussion items


Gordy Pace reported that 149 people registered for the SUMMIT Technology Unconference. There were 35 breakout sessions. Several members of the cabinet and a couple deans were able to meet speakers at an event the night before and/or participate in part of the unconference. 

Antony Jo said he thought that with this being the second unconference, it might not have the same magic, but that people were still passionate about the things they talked about.

Art Held said that the first unconference was good, but felt the second one was significantly better. He said the startup seemed more confident and the discussions were more frank and honest.

Jesse Neidigh said that it was a great event, but the challenge now is to make sure the energy and ideas go somewhere. It opens people’s eyes and ears and gets them excited, and we have an opportunity to capitalize on that. It could be an agent for change on campus.

Draft email policy

Matt said he wanted one policy the applied to both students and employees, but a lot of the policy is for students and there is some separation of student and employee expectations in the policy. For example, students are allowed to forward their email at their own risk while employees should not do that.

The policy also captures that there could be other forms of electronic communication beyond University-provided email. If those forms incur cost for the recipient, we need to ask for permission.

The policy points to overlying Board of Regent’s policies that would take precedence. Acceptable use is defined there. Definitions might need grooming

Adrian Irish pointed out that this is a very early draft. After initial feedback there will be a more polished draft that will be brought back to IT Senate. Matt said that after IT Senate reviews the next draft, it will go as a resolution to the cabinet. 

Allen Szalda-Petree asked if we expect students to read this policy. He said that it’s nice that it’s all together, but that the more that doesn’t pertain directly to them will decrease the likelihood that they will read it. Jesse said he likes it as one policy, but it’s easy enough to reference the sections that pertain to students when marketing to them.

Allen asked about employees forwarding email. Matt clarified that the point that the policy is trying to capture is that any communication that is business related should emanate from an employee’s UM account and they should expect to receive any business-related email in their UM account. Jesse said that section F needs more clarity. John Greer said that the language related to forwarding in section D is more clear. Matt said he would work on the wording.

Jesse also suggested there needs to be consistency in referring to people as either “individuals” or “email users.” He also questioned our ability to execute the deactivation policy. Matt said we want to drive some process change with deactivations. Maybe the policy will help inform a new process.

Joe Hickman pointed out that students can readmit two years after they leave and that the advising community would be concerned about losing that communication channel with them in the interim. Matt said the account and same identity could be reactivated. Joe suggested checking with admissions and advising as to how they might use that.

Allen asked why student email accounts are kept for six months after leaving but employees only 30 days. Adrian explained that there is a significant period of time when we don’t know if a student is coming back. John Greer said that there are complaints from adjuncts who lose their email and don’t get it back by the time the next semester starts. He said that making it longer than 30 days for some employees could have benefits.

Matt suggested that the next review by IT Senate could happen at the December meeting.

Reports of standing committees, Tech Partners and Mod Squad

Data governance committee

Joe Hickman clarified that the intent was to make the data governance a separate campus committee rather than a subcommittee of IT Senate. That last part that needs to be decided is the security structure. The thought is that the security committee should be outside data governance.

Matt reminded the group that there would be an on-going liaison between data governance and IT Senate the way we’ve done with Tech Partners and Mod Squad. We need to formalize that.

Allen asked if IT Seante would have anything to say about the composition of the committee. Joe said that the data governance committee is working on the representation model.

Enterprise applications committee

John Greer said that the committee has not met this fall and he’s struggling as to where to take the committee. He said that a form and process was created last year to vet purchase of enterprise applications and several applications have not gone through that process.  He said the next thing for the committee to do is to meet and discuss its role. He expressed concerns that the Adobe campus licensing process was not transparent.

Communications and collaboration committee

Roger Maclean reported that Matt will share the IT Senate annual report with ECOS. The communications committee purposely used a format similar to the Faculty Senate annual report. 

The committee talked about how we could communicate updates to campus on a semester or quarterly basis. One possibility is information in each issue of the IT newsletter which is published quarterly.

Roger said that when the communications committee was first formed, one of its charges was directing the strategic plan. It was determined that that was something IT Senate could not do effectively, so we’re really looking at ways to be more effective communicators and keeping campus update on directions and decisions made.

Gordy said that committee sections of the IT website need content updates. We don’t have anything for Tech Partners or Mod Squad, neither of which has it’s own website.

Matt said the committee will also do something for topics for the IT Senate, perhaps taking the catalog of unconference ideas and other resources as a way of being more proactive in setting up rich discussions.

Mod Squad

Karen Moore reported that Banner/CyberBear foundation upgrades were done successfully, but there were some kinks that are being worked on. Now that the upgrade is done, the next push will be for Web for Proxy (parent portal). Next will be Banner XE modules which will include a replacement for CyberBear.

Tech Partners

Antony Jo reported the following topics were covered in the October Tech Partners meeting:

  • More details on the voice mail upgrade happening October 30
  • Enterprise chat. Some people are using Slack and like it. Others are trying Cisco Spark.
  • A request from users to inject photos in email
  • Central IT bringing in a trainer for LandDesk. 

The meeting adjourned at 5:00 p.m.

Minutes submitted by Gordy Pace