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The Source

Reality check for LC employees: mandatory transition to LCmail powered by Google happens soon

March 20, 2012

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    Liz Young, IT Client Services Consultant

As of May 7, 2012, Lewis & Clark e-mail services will automatically transition to LCmail powered by Google. To prepare employees for this mandatory changeover, Information Technology is offering classes, an online list of FAQs, and progress updates on Twitter and Facebook.

The Source caught up with IT Consultant Liz Young to get a reality check on our progress as we all approach the impending deadline.

How many Lewis & Clark employees have made the switch?

The staff across all three institutions are ahead of the curve, with around 58 percent of all staff having made the move, while only 16 percent of faculty have. On the other hand, that number for faculty includes a large number of adjunct professors, particularly at the grad and law schools; for nonadjunct faculty, the rate is 46 percent. We are a little over halfway through the opt-in period, so we would like to be seeing higher numbers in total, but we are pleased with the number of people who have voluntarily made the switch during the early part of the process.

Does the switch to Google allow for community members to keep using desktop e-mail programs like Thunderbird, Apple Mail, or Outlook?

Absolutely. We will continue to support Thunderbird as our recommended desktop e-mail program and will happily assist with changing settings on that or any other e-mail program for the foreseeable future. Many people in IT continue to use Thunderbird as their primary method of accessing e-mail, while others have transitioned to using the Gmail interface. It’s completely a matter of personal preference, and we’re happy to work with people to figure out what will best fit their needs.

What if I already use my @lclark.edu e-mail address to log in to my personal Google account?

If you created a log-in prior to Lewis & Clark adopting Google using your @lclark.edu account, you will have to change the log-in name on your non-L&C based account in order to access your content, such as e-mails and documents. Google has a number of helpful articles to help you understand what has happened. You can then migrate those e-mails or documents over to your official L&C account if you’d like. We would be happy to make an appointment with you to help out with that process.

What will happen if I don’t do anything by the May 7 deadline?

Any e-mail account not moved over during the opt-in period will be automatically moved after the deadline. The catch is we don’t have your password, so we’ll have to change it (meaning you won’t be able to access your account until you reset your password). We will also be far less available to help people with any issues that arise during that week, so we highly recommend making the switch sooner rather than later in order to secure our assistance if needed.

Is it possible to get one-on-one help with the switch or is there a class available with a low teacher-to-student ratio?

Absolutely! There is a form to request one-on-one migration assistance on our website. Our Google Mornings classes have typically had around five or six people per instructor, and we have the gather-five by request classes, where if you get five people together who want to learn something on any of our supported software, we will coordinate a time to meet with the group.

How does LCmail powered by Google address privacy and security?

The privacy agreement for Google Apps for Education is much more restrictive on the data Google can gather than their privacy policies for their publicly available services. For more detail about the privacy policy for Google Apps for Education, check out the following links:

www.google.com/apps/intl/en/edu/privacy.html

http://support.google.com/a/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=60762

Who is the best contact for more information?

For general project information, please contact Liz Young at eayoung@lclark.edu, or x7345. For migration questions or specific questions about a Google product or setting up your account on your computer or mobile devices, contact our help desk at consult@lclark.edu or x7225.