Wireless Handsets From Sprint Are Now Part of the College Academic Curriculum
tudents Benefit From Enhanced Communications and a Better Learning Experience
Beginning in Fall 2007, several colleges across the United States including Georgia Gwinnett College; Fayetteville State University; University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Mercer University and Fairleigh Dickinson University launched Sprint Campus Connect, an innovative on-campus mobile solution from Sprint (NYSE:S) featuring applications from Rave Wireless Inc. (ravewireless.com). This enhanced campus-wide mobile phone program helps promote additional student safety on campus, enhanced communications among staff, faculty and students, and a better learning experience for all.
Recent incidents on college campuses, including the Virginia Tech shooting, have shown the urgency for safeguarding students at educational institutions across the country. Discussions have also brought into light the need for effective, quick and reliable channels of communication amongst staff, students and safety personnel during an emergency or disaster. Mobile devices can help alleviate these issues.
Sprint Campus Connect featuring Rave Wireless offers customized applications and mobile handsets catered to the individual needs of the universities. The program provides universities with a Rave Campus software license, customized ordering, distribution, billing, support and service/repair channels, and enhanced wireless coverage and capacity, provided through the Sprint Custom Network Solutions (CNS) team. Students get discounts on the latest Sprint handsets, choices of exclusive rate plans tailored to their lifestyle, unlimited data and text messaging options and unlimited access to the core suite of Rave Wireless applications.
With this enhanced program from Sprint, universities can now quickly share important announcements with their students through text messaging – one of the most popular modes of communication among students. Sprint Campus Connect creates a sense of community for faculty and students linked through a common and preferred communication device, the mobile phone.
Instructors now have the ability to send alerts and mobile polls for assessment purposes to students in the classroom and beyond, extending the learning environment and keeping the students engaged. In addition students can access real-time information such as course announcements, grades, campus directories, university events, shuttle bus locations, video and audio podcasts as well as the ability to find and reserve meeting rooms, all through their Sprint handset.
With the launch of this program in September, more than 600 Mercer University students are already benefiting from these innovative features.
“The partnership between Mercer University, Sprint and Rave Wireless provides a state of the art Campus Communication Program that ensures students have access to a broad spectrum of information tools,” said Major General Richard N. Goddard (retired), vice president and chief technology officer for Mercer University. “This program helps us improve safety and security, enhance access to educational applications, broadens communication options between students and faculty and assure signal reception in every University facility.”
Wireless phones are also being used to track academic progress and receive support. For example, the system can remind students of the remaining balance in their scholarship funds, which classes they should take prior to their senior year, and when a meeting with an academic mentor might be necessary. University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill now offers its on-campus residential students with Sprint handsets with customized Rave Wireless applications including the award-winning Rave Guardian™ that puts a virtual public safety officer at every student’s side when they need it.
“Using a mobile phone to share information seems to fit in well on our campus since many of our students own a cell phone,” said Brian Payst, director of technology and systems support in UNC’s Division of Student Affairs. “This year’s launch to residence hall students of the UNC Mobile Plan in partnership with Sprint and Rave Wireless has been well received.”
In the last two years, Sprint has launched this program to more than 10 universities. To simplify the process, Sprint recently updated the program with new cost-effective education-only pricing, streamlining the process for universities. With this new program Sprint will manage the implementation, distribution, service, support, repair, exchange, upgrades and billing for non-university services in-house, while continuing to provide more value to students at a lower cost.
“In the last few years academic institutions have realized the growing need for mobile communications on campus and have been very open in their adoption of this new technology to improve the campus experience for students and their staff,” says Craig Carroll, director of education sales at Sprint. “Our goal at Sprint is to continue this momentum through our Sprint Campus Connect Program which is cost effective, offers a simplified billing platform, requires minimum upfront investment from the university and gives them the technological edge in the marketplace.”
To learn more about the Sprint Campus Connect program featuring Rave Wireless, visit www.sprint.com/rave. For additional information on Sprint solutions for higher education, visit www.sprint.com/highereducation.
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