Monday, June 24, 2013

Education, whether it is an engineering program at a large university or a small theological program at Virginia Seminary, requires technology. Teaching occurs in many different arenas and methods.

The Seminary has two lecture halls and three classrooms that have technology built in. Much of this equipment is outdated and is not intuitive to use by visitors. In the strategic plan of 2012, there is an objective (7.4) that points to enhancing the technology in the classrooms. Additionally, a discussion was had at a Board of Trustees gathering about the need to update the technology.

In the small breakout rooms and the Bohlen Hall classroom, 60” HD flat screen LCD monitors will be fixed to the wall. They will have computer input allowing for a user to plug a laptop computer into the screen. The midsized classrooms will all have electric screens that descend from the ceiling, 5,500 lumens HD projectors mounted in the ceiling, podiums to house new computers, including Dual Touch Interactive LCD Displays. These displays will allow the person at the podium to use a stylus or finger to write directly onto a presentation. This is very similar to how the current Smart Boards™ work. These rooms will also be outfitted with 4 new speakers each. These speakers are evenly distributed through the room directly into the ceiling tiles. Finally, the lecture hall on the second floor will have all new equipment to match the equipment in the mid-sized classrooms.

The equipment has arrived and the contractor is using the quiet time between summer term and August term to get it all installed and working. I spoke with so many people to get input for this project, but I especially have relied on Xavier Belanger, Timothy Dang, Linda Huntington, and Dave Mutscheller. They have pored over technology specs and contract proposals and helped make the recommendations that emerged into what will be fabulous new classrooms.

Heather Zdancewicz
Vice President for Administration and Finance