Author Archives: Ginger Hartman

ITS Consulting Services | Project Request Form Coming Soon!

its_consulting_servicesLet’s say you want to bring in a new software to campus and need to know if it will interface with current campus technologies such as PeopleSoft. Will it require a single sign on? Does the product have a VPAT to meet federal ADA compliance requirements? It’s not surprising that some confusion can come about for both those within and outside the ITS department when purchasing or implementing new technology on-campus. Now there is a solution.

ITS Consulting Services stands as a hub for those who would like to know the process to initiate a new technology project and or simply to seek general information. In other words, ITS Consulting Services points you in the right direction.

Let’s imagine there was a sales rep who wanted to introduce a breaking new organizational software which would improve upon the campus technology infrastructure and yet has no idea who might benefit from having the product on-campus. At the same time, a faculty member is looking to improve their department’s organizational software and has no idea which is the best one to choose. In the past, these two parties may have never met.

With the arrival of the ITS Consulting Services, they would have been able to connect our fictitious sales rep and faculty member, essentially bridging the gap and avoiding any means of redundancy.

While the specific benefit of ITS Consulting Services is to CSUSB staff and faculty, they invite any current CSUSB student who might have a software question to also request a consultation through their online form just as faculty and staff would.

A request form for consulting services will be located on the ITS Consulting Services web page (coming soon).  The form is currently being reviewed by the campus I.T. Governance Committee and will soon be available to help you:

  • Request IT project information
  • Request a new product implementation
  • Ask general questions

However, until it is officially launched, anyone looking for support can simply e-mail with a question or request.

Employee Spotlight: Tracy Medrano

Medrano_2Q2A8443a (3)Tracy Medrano is an instructional designer for the ITS department of Academic Technologies and Innovation (ATI). ATI is committed to providing high-quality support that helps transform the online and face-to-face learning environment by creating technology-enhanced learning solutions and promoting quality online course design.

As an instructional designer, Tracy offers course design recommendations based on pedagogic theories and principles, helps transition face-to-face courses to a fully online or blended format, re-designs existing online courses, and recommends technologies and available resources. She designs and develops teaching, learning, and assessment resources in a variety of formats such as prints, graphics, audio and video technologies to support curriculum offerings. Tracy creates and delivers workshops for groups and individuals on instructional software and design. She also facilitates the California State University Quality Online Learning and Teaching (QOLT) and Quality Matters (QM) quality assurance standards for continuous improvement in online education, best practices, and program requirements.

For Tracy, “learning happens through our experiences.” The most rewarding part of being an instructional designer is “being a part of the creative learning process; working closely with faculty to help create a learning environment that’s both stimulating and memorable for students.”

On a personal level, Tracy and her family enjoy traveling to San Diego and Big Bear. She would love to someday travel to Bora Bora with her family and stay in an overwater bungalow suite. More than anything, she enjoys spending her free time with her kids; attending baseball games, watching movies, and painting. Tracy also spends time volunteering in her local community. Her favorite movies are Stephen King’s It, Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, and Office Space. Her favorite food is Japanese and Indian.

Tracy has been working at CSUSB for ten months and brings with her nine years of experience in online course development, learning management systems, and organization training and development. She is a certified Franklin Covey facilitator, since 2009. Franklin Covey is a global company focused on performance improvement. As a client facilitator she teaches leadership, execution, productivity, communication, and trust content and adapts it to organizational needs. In addition, Tracy is a certified Vital Smarts facilitator, since 2011. Vital Smarts “offers training and leadership solutions based on more than 30 years of on-going research.” She is a certified facilitator in Crucial Conversations, which “offers skills for forming agreement by encouraging open and respectful dialogue around difficult topics” and is a certified facilitator in Change Anything, which is based on a methodology for changing individual behavior. Tracy holds a B.A. in Business Administration from California Baptist University and is currently working on her M.A. in Instructional Design and Technology.

To Tracy, “CSUSB is an archetype of artistic expression and a beacon of opportunity.”


IT Governance: August 2016

IT LeadershipCSU Mentor Soon to be Replaced –Discussion was had on when CSU Mentor will be replaced and why. VP Sudhakar explained that the replacement to CSU Mentor would have much broader applications and include graduate studies. Concerns were voiced on ease of use, what kind of information will be needed from end users, and how it will accommodate international students. VP Sudhakar will gather more details and report back.

Administrator Access on Desktops – Good progress is being made. The process started with Department Chairs and staff and will include faculty in the fall.

ITS Strategic Planning Implementation Plan – The Strategic Plan is now in its implementation phase and a document has been created that includes two different categories. Green is when a goal/objective will be initiated and blue indicates a need for improvement. If you would like to view the Implementation Plan, please click the link below to download.

ITS Strategic Planning Implementation PDF

New Wireless Network Recommendation – AVP Au made a recommendation to rename the CSUSB-ACCESS Wi-Fi network in August. Currently, CSUSB-ACCESS is a limited 24-hour Wi-Fi access that is meant for guests and visitors. The name has caused confusion for those who are using the CSUSB-ACCESS rather than Eduroam. When a user logs into Eduroam, their device will automatically reconnect to the network without having to log back in. Eduroam is a global Wi-Fi network that gives the user access to all CSU campuses as well as over 470 institutions around the world. Currently 82% of CSUSB users are on Eduroam and the goal is to reach 100% this year. It is being proposed that CSUSB-ACCESS be renamed to, “CSUSB- VISITOR.”

Wi-Fi Access now available for Department Owned Devices – It was announced that Eduroam is now available for department owned devices such as iPads and laptops. Users should contact ITS services to set up an account.

Accessible Technology Initiative Compliance Audit – VP Sudhakar shared that the compliance audit showed that web compliance is adequate, and good progress is being made on instructional material compliance. However, we are behind on procurement compliance. All departments need to be made aware of requirements for ADA Compliance. All new software vendors ( for products with 10 or more users) need to present a verified Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) before purchase.

NSF Grant Application – Progress on applying for the National Science Foundation grant is being made. This grant will upgrade our egress link as well as create high-performance computing on campus.

ITS Consulting Services – A Discussion was had on the proposal by ITS for a Consulting Service. Director Zuniga introduced the process which would include a web form for new requests. The goal of IT Consulting Services is to streamline project requests coming from the campus community and set timelines, milestones, and assessment metrics. Further discussion was had on how to make the request form clear, concise and user friendly.

Discussion – 

  • VP Sudhakar thanked Provost Delgado for his leadership of the IT Governance Committee.
  • The committee was reminded that there will be a Blackboard upgrade on August 26th. Email reminders will be sent to the colleagues list.

ITS Department Services | Technology Support Center

square-01 (2)Whether you are a student or faculty/staff member, the ITS Technology Support Center (TSC) is the one stop shop for all of your technological needs. As a faculty/staff member, especially those new to the CSUSB community, it can sometimes appear intimidating and overwhelming to know all of the services and software available to you. That is why the ITS Technology Support Center is here. Their main goal is to provide world class customer service to all members of our campus community.

As a one stop shop of excellence, The TSC offers a variety of technical support for the following areas:

In addition to technical assistance, the TSC provides faculty and staff access to free or highly discounted software. This includes programs such as; Microsoft Office 365, ESET Antivirus, ZOOM Conferencing Software, Portfolium, Mathematica and much more.

Another benefit of the Technology Support Center is having access to their self-service lab, fully equipped with 80 workstations. The lab is open during library hours and on weekends from 7:00 am – 7:00 pm.

Should you need help, the Technology Support Center is here to help you 24/7. Whether it be questions about software , trouble connecting to Wifi, or solving vexing issues with Blackboard, please contact them anytime, any day. Visit the TSC website at or email them at with your technical requests.

To those that may be unfamiliar, the TSC (Technology Support Center), is located on the first thumbnail_Wedge TSCfloor of the Pfau Library Wedge. What is the Wedge exactly? The Wedge is the lovely little crevasse which hangs off to side of our campus Library.

ITS Training Services is also located on the first floor of the Pfau Library Wedge and is ready to provide training on a variety of technological resources available on and off campus.



ITS Planning

ITS Strategic Plan Implementation

The Information Technology Services (ITS) Strategic Plan 2016-2020 is now complete. This plan will guide the ITS Division in the support of students, faculty and staff and the academic mission of CSUSB. We have now begun the implementation of the Strategic Plan that will guide us for the next five years. If you would like to view the Implementation Plan, please click the link below to download.

CSUSBITS-Strategic-Plan-Implementation-Plan-2016-2020-3 (1)


Employee Spotlight: Elizabeth Viramontes

E.ViramontesElizabeth Viramontes is an Instructional Designer in the ITS department of Academic Technologies and Innovation (ATI). The ATI department mainly focuses on helping faculty supplement innovating technologies into their courses. They provide course consultations and instructional designers to help build courses to the faculty’s specifications as well as to the needs of their students. Their main goal is to find new and creative ways to incorporate technology in education so students will engage in their learning —since students are constantly using and finding new innovative technologies.

As an instructional designer, Elizabeth engages in the research-based process of designing and implementing instruction for better learning. She uses her broad knowledge of instructional design and implements it into the course designs and content. Elizabeth creates and develops the appropriate design for the course project reflecting the understanding of a diversity of learners and groups of learners. She provides effective implementation of instructional design for students to make the best of their course experience.

On a personal note, Elizabeth loves to travel. She’s been to Europe but her favorite place to travel is Hawaii. Next on her travel list is Thailand.

Her favorite hobby during the winter is snowboarding and, for about eight years, she did Muay Thai kickboxing. Her favorite movie is Amelie even though her favorite genre is horror; her favorite TV show is the Walking Dead. She enjoys eating Thai food and sushi.

Elizabeth has been working for CSUSB for about 10 years. Within those 10 years, she has held different positions in ITS such as; creating graphic and video content for online courses, video production, multimedia design, graphic design, and motion graphics, until getting her current position as a course development instructional designer. Elizabeth graduated from CSUSB with a double major —Communications with a concentration in Mass Communication and Art with a concentration in graphic design.

To Elizabeth, CSUSB is a place, which has been and continues to be a constant teacher to her. She went to school here where she developed as a young adult and a professional. Now in her professional career, she comes to work everyday to learn something new.

IT Governance Digest: July 2016

IT LeadershipAdministrator Access on Desktops: ITS again brought forth the recommendation for local administrative rights and the proposed form with changes incorporated from the last few meetings. After the discussion, the committee unanimously approved moving forward with the recommendation and form pending two additional modifications. The committee will work with ITS in the implementation phase.

Phishing Simulation: With phishing being the third highest threat in cybersecurity, ITS brought forth a recommendation for education on phishing awareness. Over the next six months ITS is proposing to educate the campus and then to send out a phishing test that can assess vulnerability. VP Sudhakar shared that the Chancellor’s office will be assisting with costs for this educational program. The committee unanimously approved this recommendation.

NSF Grant Application: VP Sudhakar and colleagues attended the Internet2 Global Summit in May and met with the director of the National Science Foundation. There is an opportunity for a grant to upgrade our egress link in San Bernardino to 100 GB. The grant is due in August and the VP Sudhakar will be meeting with his team and additional colleagues to discuss this opportunity. More information will be brought to the next meeting.

ProofPoint Update: ITS will be bringing a recommendation to the next meeting for the ProofPoint Outlook plug-in. The IT Governance Executive Committee must approve the decision to push out this plug-in that is already included in the package that was purchased before ITS proceeds.

ITS Consulting ServicesVP Sudhakar shared an early proposal from ITS to create a consulting unit to streamline project requests coming from the campus community and to set timelines, milestones and assessment metrics.


Employee Spotlight: Gerardo Garcia-Sotelo

FullSizeRenderGerardo Garcia-Sotelo works in Enterprise Cloud Services as a Lead Operating Systems Analyst. The ITS-Enterprise and Cloud Services (ECS) hosts the central server farm of CSUSB’s campus operations. ECS provides computing power, storage, network, cooling, power infrastructure, monitoring and backup services including digital data exchange to multiple departments and colleges across campus. In addition, ECS provides support services to campus enterprise applications such as Office365.

The ECS server room hosts CSUSB’s central private cloud using enterprise technology from VMware, DELL and VEEAM. This server room supports over 240 virtual servers and over 100 physical servers across campus from various departments. The ECS infrastructure hosts applications that support student success, such as library systems and virtual desktop infrastructure used in computer labs (VDI) to mention some.

In essence, the services that the ECS department provides to the CSUSB campus are mostly behind the scenes, but fundamental to the mission of the campus, which ultimately translates into student success.

As a Lead Operating System Analyst, Gerardo manages the day-to-day operation at the ECS server room. One of the most recent projects Gerardo has completed and feels proud of is the implementation and documentation of the Environmental Sensor Systems for the university’s Central Server Room. This system is currently in use to remotely monitor and send emails and text notifications about water leaks, power outages, and sudden changes in temperature and humidity conditions. He is also proud of maintaining expert knowledge on all business procedures associated with the assets and capacity planning in the ECS server room. Gerardo also coordinates the logistics and installation of incoming equipment and performs electrical and cooling load analysis to ensure proper functionality of the server room infrastructure.

On a personal note, Gerardo’s favorite food is Thai and he enjoys watching motorsports, action movies and documentaries. He also likes to work on cars and work on DIY home and garden improvements for his house.

His favorite place to travel is Hawaii because, he says, he enjoys the “warm water and blue ocean.” On his future travel bucket list is New Zealand and Norway.

Gerardo has been working for CSUSB for 11 years. In 1988, he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering. That same year, he began to work for Emerson Electric until 2000 when he left to became an international student to the CSUSB Yasuda Center. From there he graduated with his Masters in Computer Sciences in 2005. Currently, Gerardo is enrolled in the MPA CSUSB cohort.

To Gerardo, “CSUSB is like home to me. It is the institution that I graduated from; I enjoy my work, which also allows me the opportunity to contribute to student success. It is great to be part of the pack.”

IT Governance Digest: June 2016

IT LeadershipEMS Recommendation: CSUSB currently uses two systems for university scheduling: Ad Astra and EMS. Due to EMS maintenance agreement expiring last year and Ad Astra expiring this year, Carol Dixon and team are recommending adopting a single system: EMS. The system was demonstrated for university schedulers and it meets the needs of both academics and events schedulers. The Executive Committee unanimously approved the recommendation to adopt EMS software as the university scheduling software.

ITS Decision Making Process: VP Samuel Sudhakar brought back the ITS Decision Making Process chart to the Executive Committee for review. Feedback from the previous meeting has been incorporated. There was discussion to clarify the role of the Executive committee in the process.

Blackboard Maintenance Schedules: VP Samuel Sudhakar presented information regarding emergency Blackboard system maintenance protocol. There was discussion about the most appropriate option for communication of emergency maintenance to users and about what would be the best time for it to take place.

Administrator Access on Desktops: VP Samuel Sudhakar shared the request for authorization for local administrative rights recommendation. He stated that it has already been presented to the Executive Committee and has been revised based on feedback.  The form was also presented and is basically a pathway to get administrative access. The form and recommendation will be brought back next month with incorporated suggestions.

Alertus Recommendation: ITS presented a recommendation to implement the Alertus system to cover the gap in desktop emergency notifications. The system would take over your monitor in case of emergencies. After discussion, the Executive Committee unanimously approved the implementation of the Alertus desktop notification.

Employee Spotlight: Jacquelyn Almonte

AlmonteJJacquelyn Almonte is a lead system analyst in the Administrative Computing and Business Intelligence (ACBI) department of the ITS division. The ACBI develops, provides support, and manages different campus enterprise software applications on various hardware platforms. ACBI works in an environment that collaborates and engages to generate the best practices and unique solutions for campus business needs. With a rapidly evolving and volatile technology landscape, the ACBI team engages with technology trends and experiments in creative ways to apply them to campus business to change or adapt to the needs of their business partners. ACBI provides administrative users the support they need to transition and adjust to the changes being made in the technology by having instructor led and one-on-one hands on training, tutorials, and self-services.

As a lead system analyst, Jacquelyn analyzes systems and procedures already in place devising modifications and identifying needs of new equipment or software. She decides when to recommend upgrades to the systems and designs computer programs with the use of flowcharts and diagrams; afterwards, she configures equipment and software. In addition, she also writes technical reports and creates/updates protocols and procedures.

Jacquelyn is most proud of her ‘Communication History’ Project she completed last year, which allows students to see emails sent to them via PeopleSoft in MyCoyote. She is most grateful for her ability to help others accomplish their job more effectively and efficiently through the use of technology.

On a personal level, Jacquelyn enjoys playing billiards, but her favorite game is 9-ball. Her favorite movies are all the Star Trek movies, (which her husband bought and gave to her as an anniversary present). As for food, she’ll eat pretty much anything but lately she has been obsessed with Korean food and Japanese Ramen.

Jacquelyn loves to travel to places where there’s beautiful scenery and that’s why she can be found driving on Highways: 101, 120, 395, and 4 for no other reason than to fill her soul with beauty and peace. On an exciting note, she will be traveling to Israel soon and is looking forward to her new adventures there.

Jacquelyn has worked for CSUSB for two years. She received her B.S in Business Administration, Computer Information Systems and an emphasis in Business System Analysis from Cal Poly Pomona.

To Jacquelyn CSUSB means, “There are many opportunities for professional and personal growth at CSUSB. I look forward to enhancing my skills further and to contribute the abilities that God has given me to better service our students and my colleagues.”