2011-2012 Computer Replacement Initiative

From Elliot Hirshman, Provost

This memorandum is to announce the Computer Replacement Initiative (CRI) for the academic year 2011-2012 in the Academic Affairs division. While we continue to face significant fiscal challenges, we recognize that it is important to provide our faculty and staff with the technology tools needed to carry out our academic mission. Funds available for the CRI continue to be limited and consequently we anticipate that we will not be able to fund all the meritorious applications.

The procedures for this year’s CRI will be the same as last year’s and we will also maintain the same subsidy levels as before. Specifically, the subsidy for a laptop is $1,000 (which includes $50 for a mandatory security tracking software) and the subsidy for a desktop is $600. The goal for this differential is to promote the purchase of laptops by faculty and staff based on the advantages provided by laptops in the areas of academic continuity, sustainability, portability and teaching with technology as we continue to upgrade our classrooms.

Ordering of the new machines will occur on June 1 with installation planned for the end of June.

Given the success achieved during the previous years with a single procurement and mass distribution of PCs, we will continue with a similar program this year. As in the past, we will have several “standard” configurations included in this procurement as well as an option for a standard configured laptop. The minimum and recommended configurations for a desktop and laptops can be found here.

The CRI has always required cost sharing of new computers. As indicated above, we will provide a subsidy of $600 for a PC and $1,000 ($950 for the laptop plus $50 for Mandatory Security Tracking Software) for a laptop machine. Those wishing to purchase a different brand of PC, laptop, Macintosh, or Unix computer may apply the subsidy amount toward the purchase of a computer. All computers purchased should come with a three-year warranty.

We will again place a bulk purchase with Dell so machines can be delivered and installed well in advance of the start of the Fall 2011 semester. Each individual will have the option of using the bulk purchase or ordering their customized unit from either Dell or another vendor. I encourage you to participate in this bulk purchase plan given the benefits we have seen in the past. Your department will be charged a one-time amount depending on which option you should select. The options available and the exact department cost share for each option will be announced in April as soon as we have such information from Dell.

The timeline for this year’s CRI is the following:

March 7, 2011: Announcement sent to campus

April 15, 2011: Deadline for submitting the CRI application via the OIT web form

April 22, 2011: Notification to chairs/directors of award recommendations from the committee

April 30, 2011: Feedback from chairs/directors on the award of recommendations

May 4, 2011: Review by the deans of the awards list

May 6, 2011: Awards are announced

May 20, 2011: Deadline for awardees to make their computer options selection

June 1, 2011: Computer order will be placed

The application form is available on the web at my.umbc.edu/go/cri. First priority for funding is given to a requestor with a computer that falls below the minimum standard and who has explained the need for a new computer under the mandatory narrative on the form. If you have questions about the CRI or these instructions, contact Vice Provost Moreira at ext. 5-6576 or Executive Assistant Susan Lavezza at ext. 5-6577.

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