June, 2020 CIO Update

Happy Fiscal Year End! For this month’s entry I will take a break from COVID-related projects and focus on one highlight from this fiscal year and one of our largest projects moving into next fiscal year:

ITCC Year 1

Information Technology Career Community
Logo for the Information Technology Career Community.

Today marks the last day of the inaugural year of the Information Technology Career Community (ITCC).   Following is the link to their annual report: https://docs.google.com/document/d/163-ggEYAAVZfXxHDdhpLTRyUnjT6CtXq5rZ0CovLOcs/edit. I am thankful to the ITCC leadership team for doing an outstanding job of launching what I believe has been an important resource and enriching set of activities and programs that connect all of us in the IT community at VCU.  The inaugural ITCC leadership team consisted of:

  • Andrew Leisure, MCV Campus Chair
  • Sean McGrath, Monroe Park Campus Chair
  • Melvin Denseddie, Treasurer
  • Warren Mays, Operations Coordinator
  • Curtis Reisinger, Communications Coordinator

As Sean McGrath noted in speaking of his colleagues: “The inaugural leadership team are some hard-working, talented folks who in a shortened 9 month term complete with pandemic and organizational teething, produced a remarkable collection of events and information.”  I urge my management team and the management teams in distributed IT organizations to continue to support the ITCC, and I urge all, including those not in IT jobs, to participate.  I believe the ITCC really exemplifies the concept of the career community and that the hard work of the leadership team and high levels of participation and management support has set the standard for career communities at VCU. For more information on the ITCC, please go to https://blogs.vcu.edu/itcc/. I look forward to the new leadership team’s work!

Canvas Update

VCU has begun the year-long transition to Instructure’s Canvas platform as our primary Learning Management System (LMS). Blackboard will be retired June 30, 2021 and all courses will use Canvas, beginning fall 2021. The transition process will take place in phases to minimize academic disruption and maintain data integrity. The Learning Systems team within the Academic Technologies unit will manage and support both systems (Blackboard and Canvas) during this transition and have partnered with the ALTLab and the Center for Teaching & Learning Excellence (CTLE) to provide training and support for faculty. This summer, a limited number of undergraduate courses from a variety of programs will be taught using Canvas. Any new courses will now be created in Canvas and all other courses will be transitioned over the coming months.  Additional information is located on the Learning System’s Canvas website, which includes FAQs, details about the decision to switch to Canvas, and links for submitting questions. The transition timeline will be updated on the site as the project evolves. Plans for Town Hall sessions are underway and dates will be published soon.

Thanks to all in the VCU IT community for everything you do!


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