Gayleen Looks Back on 2018
As the calendar year winds down, it is hard not to become reflective of all that has happened over the last 12 months. For McMaster IT, 2018 has been a year of connections, accomplishments, and planning for the future. It’s been a thrilling and productive year!
The McMaster IT Strategic Planning process definitely stands out as a key reflection of the year past. Starting early in the spring, we have been immersed in significant consultations with groups and individuals from across the various campus constituencies to gather meaningful input for the McMaster IT Strategic Plan. This afforded me many delightful opportunities to meet with so many of you! It was wonderful to hear your ideas and dreams for McMaster’s IT future – much of which we captured in the forthcoming Plan. The IT Executive officially endorsed the Plan in November. And while this was definitely a primary focus for this year, culminating in an official launch of our IT Strategic Plan on January 23, 2019, it certainly was not the only accomplishment.
I must acknowledge the amazing ongoing activity and collaboration behind the continued delivery of McMaster’s quality IT services and support to our students, staff, faculty and researchers. Our IT Governance system is working. In 2018, nine proposals were reviewed and seven projects completed, with others in progress. Across our institution, over 300 IT personnel work hard every day to keep our teaching, learning, research and administrative activities humming along through their efforts. Thank you, all!
There have been many individual accomplishments that have contributed to this very successful year and here are just a few highlights that reflect the IT milestones across many areas of the campus an achieved in 2018:
- The continued launch of the McMaster brand and templates through various websites, including the new CTO and Facility Services websites
- The continued roll-out of Microsoft products licensing and Lynda.com capabilities
- The implementation of the McMaster Research Ethics Manager (MREM) system
- Network switch implementation project, improving the network capability in over one-third of the buildings on campus
- Enhanced wireless coverage for Thode, Mills, MUSC and FHS completed
- MacBill, a new billing and accounts receivable Mosaic functionality rolled out
- The McMaster Creative Community was formed to support digital media creation through resource sharing, critique, education and shared exploration and has morphed into a large community of practice.
- The McMaster IT e-Newsletter launched to share monthly updates with approximately 450 community members.
- MacDrive on-premise private cloud storage launched
- MyTimetable (Virtual Schedule Builder) student scheduling system launched
- The campus Next Generation Firewall and Intrusion Prevention System for improved cyber security implementation
- A second prize in the 2018 CAUBO Quality and Productivity (Q&P) Awards for the 2016 McMaster IT Services Review project team
- Our 2nd Annual McMaster IT Forum was held
- The one-year Mosaic Campus 9.2 upgrade project was completed
- Our new McMaster IT Student Advisory Committee launched
- MacVideo is now available
- A McMaster campus-wide phone system upgrade was completed
This list is not exhaustive, and it is a testament to the committed McMaster IT professionals who consistently come together for continued excellence for our community. Through my many meetings, community sessions, committee activities, and through conversations and shared communications, I repeatedly witnessed our IT colleagues coming together to pursue improvements to how we connect and support McMaster’s research, teaching and learning mission.
I want to thank all of you for your continued support and contributions this year. The end of year is a time to reflect and express gratitude and I hope you will take time to appreciate all you have accomplished. In the spirit of the season, I want to share these videos (found here and here), which reflect on the fun and comradery that I see every day, and the appreciation that is felt for the hard work that you do every year. I am very much looking forward to continuing our exciting journey in 2019 as we embark upon the implementation of the McMaster IT Strategic Plan.
In the meantime, I wish you a happy, healthy and relaxing holiday.