A print-job well done

Campus News, News, Student Life

In June, the Capital University IT department replaced all the student printers, which were eight to 12 years old, with new ones: a whopping 25 in total.

Most of the printers haven’t changed locations, although there are a few exceptions. Steve Terry, Director of Capital’s Information Technologies Department, explained how the decisions were made.

“With some of the printers, students decided where they should go, like in the Con, they wanted one there,” Terry said. “Sometimes it was a conversation of where it should go. We moved one out of the front door of Troutman because it seemed nobody was going through there, and we moved it to the Learning Center where there’s lots of classrooms and lots of activity.”

The printers, which are being leased from Hewlett Packard and are now set to be upgraded every five years, feature an ID scan to log in to them. The first time students use printers on campus, they will need to confirm their CapID and password on the printers. After that, accessing the printers is as simple as swiping into a classroom.

The new printing services have additional advantages for students, especially the flexibility in pick-up location it offers. “You print to this kind of universal queue. You can print from anywhere, and pick it up from anywhere. Say a student is in their dorm room, they can print from there and retrieve it from any printer on campus,” Terry said. Documents will remain on the queue for a period of about 24 hours. If they are not picked up within that timeframe, they will disappear.

By putting more control in the hands of the students, the university is hoping to cut back on paper waste and the printing of un-needed documents, Terry explained. Because Capital has switched to a model where students are not charged for overages, the IT department monitors student printing. However, as long as students are not printing out full-length textbooks they should have nothing to worry about. Terry says that if there is any abuse it is usually less than 1.5% of the student population.

With the new print system, students must be physically present at the printer to print, which gives them the options to control what is printed and delete un-needed documents from their queue.

“We ultimately have two goals,” Terry said. “To provide the students with better printing services, and then the other piece is to impose on you some responsible printing as well. You all care about using resources responsibly and about helping the environment, so we want to be able to help you do that. That’s the real reason behind that.”

For more information about printing services on campus, visit https://www.capital.edu/printing-on-campus.

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