Center for Information Technology Services

Home > CITS > Communications > Archives > Newsletter > June 2004 Edition > CITS eNews Volume 1, Issue #3, Page 1

UMB Takes First Steps Towards Campus Portal

If you are a student, faculty or staff member on the UMB campus, odds are you have access to several “enterprise” (campus-wide; centrally-based) computer applications, and each one requires you to log-in at a unique site with a unique User ID and password.  Wouldn’t it make life easier if you could direct your computer to a single site where you could log into any system you are authorized to use, and only authenticate (that is, provide your User ID and password) once?!  Well, this common wish will be granted before too long.  How do we know this?  Because the project that will make it a reality has already begun.

In Information Technology terms, the goal described above requires creation of a “directory service that provides Identity Management, Authentication, Authorization and integration of multiple systems” behind the scenes and a campus “Portal” (World Wide Web application interface) on the surface where users will be able to access enterprise-wide applications. The goal is to provide more accurate solutions than those already in place for data protection, while at the same time ensuring data access for all who need and qualify for it.  A portal is a personalized, single point of access to critical information and services.  Today's portals are increasingly sophisticated applications designed to give users simple, quick, secure access to relevant organizational and personal data. 

The first phase of the new portal implementation is scheduled to go live in early 2005.  Watch for further information and progress reports in future editions of CITS eNews!

CIO’s Corner
Peter Murray, Ph.D., VP and CIO

On the morning of Thursday, May 6, 2004, an Information Technology Forum was held for IT professionals from UMB, UPI, and UMMS.  Over 120 individuals attended the event. 

The primary purpose of the Forum was for IT professionals from across the campus to meet and network with colleagues who work in this large community.  It was also an opportunity for these professionals to discuss and share information about pertinent technology issues. 

The agenda included a general discussion session for an hour, and five break-out sessions for an hour and thirty minutes, each with different topics for discussion.  The Forum technology topics were selected by the IT professionals by completing an on-line questionnaire.  The questionnaire responses indicated a desire to focus on: 1) IT security, including identity management, identity theft, directories, and the elimination of SSNs as an identifier; 2) wireless technology, including having a wireless campus, standards, security and the use of PDAs; 3) Support for faculty, including development and training and the use of eTeaching and eLearning technologies; 4) IT staff, in particular, recruiting, retraining, and retaining staff; and 5) Portals, including enterprise-level, web services and systems, and sign-on.  Interestingly, the recently published results of the EDUCAUSE 2004 Survey of Current IT issues in higher education indicated that all of the topics selected were among the top 10 issues for all of higher education this year. 
                (CIO’s Corner continued on Page 2.)