ACUTA forms VoIP interest group

July 21, 2005 - Group will focus on the implementation of converged networks in colleges and universities.

ACUTA, the Association for Communications Technology Professionals in Higher Education, has formed a special Voice over IP interest group which will focus on the implementation of converged networks in colleges and universities.

ACUTA announced the VoIP Community of Interest at its annual conference in Orlando, FL, which features its largest exhibition in five years. More than 50 members are involved with the initial formation of the group, which will meet at ACUTA events and extend to cover hundreds of ACUTA's nearly 2,000 individual members from 825 educational institutions. Its purpose is to meet the needs of members who want in-depth Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) information about best practices, vendor relationships, successful projects and user experience sharing.

Jeri Semer, executive director of ACUTA, says the VoIP Community of Interest grew out of a survey among members.

"Voice over IP was the overwhelming preference for the first of a series of communities of interest that we plan to develop," says Semer. "This is the first time we have formed a specific area of interest such as this, and the interest has been tremendous."

Theresa Rowe, assistant vice president of University Tech Services at Oakland University in Michigan, is heading the VoIP Community of Interest. She says the group will have regular conference calls and contribute documents to a common resource library between its in-person meetings at ACUTA quarterly events.
Rowe says VoIP is a hot topic on campuses, as ACUTA members deal with the rollout of this new technology. At the ACUTA conference, it was one of most-addressed subjects, with eight separate educational sessions focusing on it.

The ACUTA conference featured 107 exhibitors, occupying 13,000 square feet at the Gaylord Palms Resort. It is the largest exhibit hall for the organization in five years, which Semer says reflects not only the resurgence of the technology sector, but also the recognition of the higher education market as an important one.

ACUTA is an international non-profit educational association serving colleges and universities. For more information visit www.acuta.org.


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