Plans to Expand Wi-Fi On Campus

By Nami Nagaoka

The Department of Computer Science and Information Systems at Youngstown State University has been working on Wi-Fi improvement for the past four years. Recently, the department has taken on the possibility of extending Wi-Fi around campus.

James Yukech, associate vice president and chief information officer at YSU, manages computer services on campus, and said the university has improved Wi-Fi by improving the access to it.

In Yukech’s opinion, if students knew they could go to outside areas, like the fountain, and have Wi-Fi access in those places they my be more inclined to spend more time in those areas.

Although Yukech said the computer science and information systems department hasn’t commitmented to expanding to any specific area, they are working with the Student Government Association to see what areas are a priority for students to use Wi-Fi.

“We’re always looking for ways to improve all our services, that includes access to the Wi-Fi to improve the services we provide to our students,” Yukech said.

Ernie Barkett, president of SGA, said SGA made a list of some recommended areas to expand the Wi-Fi.

Barkett has noticed more students using outside areas of campus more frequently than in the past and is excited for the Wi-Fi expansion.

“I like sitting on the grass and sitting by the fountain, especially when the weather’s nice,” Barkett said.

In Barkett’s opinion, this project would let students work outside, work better in groups and listen to music as they walk to different buildings.

SGA sent out a survey about Wi-Fi expansion to students on Monday and plans to send the results to the IT department after two weeks.

Caroline Smith, the executive vice president of SGA, said expanding the Wi-Fi on campus would be a great way to enhance YSU.

“People love to sit outside for as much of the year as they can,” she said.

Smith said she is impressed with all of the recent technology improvements at YSU.

“It really showed me in the meeting with James Yukech how much he cares about students’ success,” she said.

Angela Lock, a junior integrated language arts major, said she is very happy to hear about this expansion.

Lock said she likes doing her homework at the fountain and sometimes wishes there was a better Wi-Fi connection there.

According to Lock, there has been times when the weather was nice and she had to write a paper; however, she didn’t have an access to the Wi-Fi, so she had to go inside.

“It seemed like a waste of a good day,” she said. “It would just push more people to get outside, which is something I feel we get away from sometimes.”

Ryan Geilhard, the director of Infrastructure Services, said although outdoor spaces are important, it’s not as important as making sure there is Wi-Fi in academic buildings inside in the classrooms.

“It’s just a matter of prioritization with out limited resources,” said Geilhard.

YSU does a refresh cycle on Wi-Fi services every six weeks. Infrastructure Services just finished working on Jones Hall in October and plans to focus on Lincoln building in November.

Geilhard released the schedule to The Jambar:

  • Lincoln Building in November
  • Phelps Building, Cushwa Hall in December
  • Beeghly Physical Education Center in January
  • Sweeney Hall in February 2019
  • Tod Hall in April 2019
  • YSU Police Department in May 2019