UGA is making dramatic changes to its database infrastructure by implementing a new, integrated student information system over the next two years. The new system will replace the current multiple, 30-year-old database systems that students, faculty and staff use to access student information.
ConnectUGA, the project name given to implement the Banner software for the new student information system, kicked off prior to the start of fall semester with training for staff charged with integrating the new system throughout several divisions across campus.
The Banner software, a product of Ellucian, will bring student information under one inclusive system and will improve the way UGA conducts business with students with processes that fall under admissions, financial aid, registration, student accounts, advising, curriculum planning and grade reporting. Staff from within each of these units, including technical staff from EITS, are working closely with the Ellucian technical team to begin the rollout of the system in fall 2013, first with prospective students applying for fall 2014 undergraduate admission, then with the other phases rolling out over the following months through 2014. Plans call for ConnectUGA and the new student information system to be fully implemented by 2015.
The integration of multiple systems will provide a single, authoritative source for information reporting; improve institutional planning and decision-making capabilities; and improve and expand services for students while at the same time providing a greater level of flexibility and the ability to adapt quickly to future needs.
The most visible change will come with the replacement of the Online Access to Student Information System known as OASIS. The new system will feature a Web-based login using a UGA MyID.
“UGA’s new student information system will bring together people, processes and technology into one integrated framework,” said Laura Jolly, vice president for instruction. “In addition to providing improved service for our students, it also will improve the process for data collection, which aids in our institutional reporting, planning, goal setting and decision making.”
Jolly serves on the ConnectUGA project leadership team, along with Holley Schramski, associate vice president and controller in Finance and Administration; Chris Miller, associate provost for academic fiscal affairs; and Timothy Chester, chief project officer and vice president for information technology.
“Timely and accurate data has never been more important,” said Chester. “When you look at the challenges we face, responding to them requires that all our decision-makers have the most relevant, the most timely and the most authoritative data available to inform their decision making. The Connect-UGA project is really about building better capacity for authoritative data. It is about a system that will better serve our students, faculty and staff.”