I started working for UC Davis as a student employee in 1990, and I liked it, so I never left. Today, I’m the Manager of Computer Lab Management at Academic Technology Services. I’m mostly concerned about making sure IET’s 12 computer classrooms and 6 open access labs work well. This involves managing the upgrades to the servers and the software, but it also involves a lot of talking with faculty.
My job is to make sure all the software faculty need is installed and is working, and to make sure that the instructors know how use the computer classrooms. My goal is that faculty can use the rooms without actually knowing how it all works – they should just go in and teach their subject and not have to troubleshoot the software. As you can imagine, it takes a bit of effort to make that happen.
What project are you currently working on?
Right now, we’re beta-testing the IET virtual lab, which will allow students to remotely access computers after the physical labs are closed. We have expensive software installed on the computers in our labs because faculty teach with it, but that’s hard on the students because they have to use the software to complete their projects and the labs are closed on the weekends.
This virtual lab allows anyone with a UC Davis account to access the software from home, or from another computer lab on campus (for instance, a person in Shields Library could use a computer from the Meyer lab). Simply go to clm.ucdavis.edu/virtual, select the software you need to access (e.g., Python, SPSS), and a Microsoft Remote Desktop connection opens. The only catch is that you can only use the virtual lab if no one else is physically using the lab, so, for most software, the virtual option is only available after 10pm or on the weekends.
This is still very new – as I said, we’re in beta testing – but we’re working on getting it out there and sharing the good news with faculty.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with our faculty readers?
If you ever want to reserve a computer classroom, just let us know and we’ll make sure it goes well.
What do you do for fun?
I do a lot of reading and playing with my kids. And, because I’m a nerd, and because I like solving hard problems, I do a lot of programming.
For more information about Computer Lab Management, and to reserve a computer classroom, visit clm.ucdavis.edu.