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Technology Spotlights

Fall 2021

John Humes Selected to Serve as IITS Interim CIO

November 17th, 2021

John Humes, currently IITS’ Information Security Officer, has been selected to serve as the Interim Chief Information Officer (CIO) and will be leading the unit through the transition period from Dean/CIO Morningstar’s retirement (on December 30th) until the successful conclusion of a formal search for the next CIO. Throughout his career at CSUSM, John Humes has demonstrated strong leadership qualities and an ability to successfully navigate challenges. These leadership qualities combined with broad technical expertise and a focus on moving the unit forward make John Humes an excellent choice for the role of IITS Interim CIO. 

 iits logo

Securing the Campus, One Year Later

November 10th, 2021

A year ago today, CSUSM experienced one of the most impactful security events in CSU history. In response, our campus community quickly came together to secure CSUSM through the adoption of DUO and other measures.

Looking forward, IITS is already taking the necessary and additional actions to address the security audit findings and complete our efforts in response to the systemwide security effort. To ensure the campus community is fully aware of the tools that are either deployed on systems you use or may produce noticeably different interactions, we wanted to share with the campus community several changes/improvements. 

computer screen with cybsersecurity icons


CSUCCESS Program a Big Hit for Fall

August/September 2021

CSUSM is one of eight participating CSU campuses that ​are offering every new first-year and transfer student ​an opportunity to receive for a new iPad bundle​ for use as long as they are an active student. CSUSM's inaugural CSUCCESS event took place on campus on August 24-25.

This was a great success, with over 1,100 new students receiving their Apple bundles (iPad Air, Keyboard Folio, and Apple Pencil) in a seamless process that saw them safely receive their equipment without having to exit their vehicles.  As of mid-September, CSUSM has distributed almost 1,900 total units.

Watch the time-lapse video of the first day that distributed 711 units

Stack of iPads


Salesforce Advisor Link & Student Success Efforts

Fall 2021

After a successful engagement with Huron over the summer, CSUSM has deployed Salesforce Advisor Link (SAL) for Office of Success Coaching and continues to work to deploy SAL for Academic Advising. This important initiative is part of CSUSM's efforts to reduce information silos and provide support staff with a 360-degree student view, since the current fragmented view of students hinders the creation of sustained relationships and reduces our ability to holistically support students. SAL offers coaches and advisors a single, highly customizable common system that contains all available student information. This new tool promotes seamless, coordinated, and consistent personalized student support and communications while seeking to avoid duplication of effort and to consolidate resources. 



Salesforce 360 view


Summer 2021

IITS Annual Report - AY 20/21

Summer 2021

Over the past twelve months we have witnessed homes becoming virtual offices and spaces of instruction and learning, new collaboration technologies being adopted at an unprecedented pace, and new challenges and expectations arise.This time has also revealed higher education’s increasing dependency upon technology and the inextricable link between technology and the success of both our learning and administrative functions. IITS professionals have addressed unprecedented challenges of the past year and the IITS' Annual Report highlights just some IITS’ actions, achievements, and challenges.



IITS Help Desk staff working in August 2020.

Flexible Instructional Spaces

Summer 2021

IITS has been working to create flexible instructional spaces that offer faculty a range of pedagogical capabilities for teaching students bothj in the classroom and at home. As part of this approach, IITS built upon the technologies introduced in 2019 in the Extended Learning and ViaSat Engineering Pavilion classrooms. These rooms offered new technology options such as digital whiteboard capabilities, mobile lecterns, and informal collaboration technologies. CSUSM has enhanced classroom spaces by adding improved video conferencing and audio/visual capabilities for mixed instruction formats while maintaining ease of use and a low technology barrier.

Live & Online Classroom room.

Digital Campus Communications (Teams Phones & Chatbot)

Summer 2021

CSUSM continues the work of providing the campus community with flexible communication tools that better serve a hybrid campus. Microsoft Teams is becoming increasingly central to campus collaboration and communications, with adoption expanding rapidly over the past year. As part of IITS' efforts towards unified communications (as stated in the 2018 Technology Strategic Plan), CSUSM has added telephony capabilities to staff and faculty Teams clients, in that way creating a telephone system that does not rely on devices in offices and, instead, is accessible on any device in any location. In addition, CSUSM has continued utilized its chatbot to offer students 24/7 automated support as well as to better communicate important information. 



Teams phones


Spring 2021

Update on October 2020 Security Incident

January 27th, 2021

Dear Campus Community,

Thanks to an amazing campus-wide effort and the help of every member of our community, the threat from the October security incident has been neutralized and our systems are once again safe and even more secure than in the past. We could not have done this without your support and patience. In addition to our gratitude, we wanted to share more information on the security incident so you have a more complete picture of the events and the campus’ actions in response.

 person typing on computer with security icon


Summer 2020

Annual Report 19/20

Posted June 2020 

The past academic year for IITS was shaped by three very distinct periods that played a major role in shaping the unit’s service to CSUSM. IITS came into AY19/20 with a long list of successful projects that were completed on time for the fall term. The most notable was the EL Building. The project certainly impacted several units on campus, and for IITS, such a large scale technical and logistical challenge added significantly to what is typically a summer filled with many other campus projects. Fall’s big project push was followed by a period of mid-year uncertainty, where budgetary and organizational changes created a pause around some key projects CSUSM would pursue. This period of abruptly ended with the COVID-19 situation, with IITS quickly pivoting, creating plans and procedures for challenges never before considered as possible prior to this event.

 IITS staff distributing equipment in March 2020.

IITS staff loaning equipment to students and fac/staff March 16, 2020.

Campus ID Goes Fully Virtual

Posted June 2020

IITS received the go-ahead to assume responsibility of the existing Campus ID from the Library and subsequently partnered with CSUSM Corp and Sodexo to deploy a unified ID and retail card. IITS quickly developed an internal system that replaced the need to come to campus for an ID photo. This system enhances our remote service capabilities by allowing students to submit their ID photo via the CSUSM website ( or the campus app.

Campus ID photo example with Crash the Cougar

Spring 2020

Answering the Call for Student Services

Posted May 2020

IITS leadership redirected all efforts to rapidly deploy the Mitel softphone solution. This effort included softphone extensions for campus employees working from home as well as a full Automated Call Distribution (ACD) functionality. These new services include enhancements such as virtual queueing of calls and end-user enhancements such as "screen pop."

Mitel phone

IITS Rapidly Adapting to Change

Posted April 2020

During spring 2020, the CSUSM campus community looked to IITS for a coordinated and swift response that provided solutions which enabled students, faculty, and staff to make the unplanned shift to virtual. Through equipment loans, technical support, training, and deployment of several new IT solutions, the campus successfully met the new challenges of a distributed and virtual work and learning space.

IITS student assistant at the helpdesk cleaning checkout equipment

Teams Helps to Ensure a Smooth Transition

Posted March 2020

As the campus rapidly shifted to virtual, Teams saw a huge increase in adoption, and IITS provided extensive training to ensure a smooth transition. Units across campus rapidly adopted Teams as a flexible and consolidated mobile platform that has proven more effective than traditional email through its social media style communications, real-time chat, shared files, and virtual meeting spaces.

Teams classroom

Repurposing Campus Technology for the Virtual Campus

Posted March 2020

Nothing demonstrates CSUSM’s true spirit and community partnership in 2020 better than the unit’s response to the shift to virtual instruction and other associated spring work environment challenges. For IITS, what started out as a one- or two-day equipment checkout event back on March 16th became weekly distribution days spanning the entirety of the semester. 

Kevin Morningstar helping a student at equipment checkout dates

IITS For You — The Focal Point for Technology Support, Training, and Resources

The IITS For You website is the focal point of IITS support, training, and resources for faculty, students, and staff...

Posted March 2020.

iits for you

Check Elevator Status on the Campus App

Through a partnership between Instructional & Information Technology Services, Disability Support Services, and Facilities Development & Management, the campus community can now receive timely app notifications of the status of all campus elevators, which improves campus accessibility and allows for better campus navigation.

Posted February 2020 

campus app

Fall 2019

FY 18/19 IITS Annual Report

Posted August 2019

The IITS Annual Report highlights the many ways that the campus' central IT group has been focused on driving operational effectiveness, responding to changing campus expectations, and implementing technologies and services that enhance the learning and service missions of the university.

FY 18/19 IITS Annual Report


IITS Summer at a Glance

Posted September 2019

2019 was a very busy summer for IITS as the construction of a brand new building (ELB), the remodeling of existing locations into innovative learning spaces, and many other collarobations and projects demanded an all-hands-on-deck approach. 

The infographic on the right tells the tale of a summer when IITS once more demonstrated its commitment to building robust and innovative infrastucture to support and enhance learning.   

an infographic for IITS' summer achievements

                            Accessible Version

Engaging Students with the Markstein Hall Video Wall

Posted September 2019

Few things grab the eye as much as high-quality video content, and that’s why IITS collaborated with the College of Business Administration (COBA) and the Office of Planning, Design, and Construction (PDC) to install a new video wall in Markstein Hall, the second video wall to go up after the one on the second floor of Kellogg Library.

COBA and IITS Leadership in front of Video Wall

Spring 2019

Technology Refresh Program - Keeps Technology Current

Posted April 2019

IITS works diligently behind the scenes to keep up with technology changes.  One of the key programs to keep technology current is the CSUSM Technology Refresh Program (TRP).  The TRP is a well-established program created by IITS in 1994 to ensure that computers used in teaching labs and by...


Express Check In using the Campus App Virtual ID

Posted March 2019

The Campus App features continue to evolve.  Students can now use the Virtual ID available on the Campus App as a convenient way to check-in to over 35 stations or centers on campus. ...

Campus App check-in Station


Wireless at the Mangrum Track & Field

Posted March 2019

The CSUSM wireless network is a robust system that allows the campus community the freedom to connect where they want and when they want. As the CSUSM wireless coverage is extensive and is continually expanding, IITS is pleased to announce that wireless is now available on the Mangrum Track & Field. ...

Mangrum Track and Field wireless AP on the top of the scoreboard

Staying Connected with the Campus App

Posted February 2019

Adoption is high for the CSUSM Campus App. Since the initial deployment in 2016, the Campus App has become a popular tool for students to quickly and easily find orientation information, access the campus maps, stay engaged with campus events and register for classes or check grades. ...

New Campus Website and Filtered Search

Posted February 2019

This technology spotlight focuses on several significant updates to the campus website and search capability.  In Fall 2018, IITS collaborated with the Office of Communications to redesign the CSUSM homepage with a new fresh look, content updates and easier navigation. Following this major change, the campus website also received updated styling ...

example left hand navigation 2019

Fast Tracking Technology Support with 2 new Electric Carts

Posted January 2019

In an effort to increase our customer service availability and efficiency, IITS recently purchased 2 new electric carts. You might see these new vehicles throughout campus as IITS staff and student assistants navigate campus in the two new machines. ...

2 new IITS Carts

Fall 2018

The Technology Learning Center - A Popular Study Spot for Students

Posted December 2018

The TLC is a new popular space on campus, which is comfortable, and functional. Prior to the Fall 2018 semester, IITS completed a renovation of the Kellogg 2000 Open Lab, now called the Technology Learning Center (TLC). ...

tlc raised desk

Adobe Available for all Students

Posted October 2018

CSUSM is pleased to announce that as of Fall 2018 Adobe Creative Cloud Suite of applications is available at no cost to all currently enrolled students. Students are eligible if they have an active campus email address and password, and you will be able to install the software on a personally owned device. IMPORTANT - When logging in on the portal page, enter your CSUSM username only (example: student001) and campus password. 

Adobe logo

Mac Computers Refreshed in 5 Buildings Across Campus

Posted October 2018

The new computers arrived on campus August 20th and IITS has already refreshed 7 labs for the Fall 2018 semester. The labs are ACD 104, ARTS 340/342, Kellogg 4400, SBSB 1206/1207 and UH 271. Each lab takes about 12 hours to refresh, not including the several hours spent tracking the removal of the old systems. The computer delivery is a yearly event in IITS ...

close up Lab refresh computer screen and mouse

New Kellogg Video Wall

Posted September 2018

The 2nd floor Kellogg hallway now has a six-panel video wall to advertise new services and broadcast live streams/TV during important life events. IITS has collaborated with the Library, Office of Communications, and Facilities to build the large video wall.  You can’t miss the video wall as you walk in to the Kellogg Library. ...

Kellogg video wall with students

DUO Multi-Factor Authentication

Posted August 2018

In Fall 2018, CSUSM began to implement Duo multi-factor authentication for logging into business critical applications that store or process level 1 confidential information. The way DUO works is that when an individual goes to login, a “push” message is sent to the user’s mobile phone.  The user then presses the button to acknowledge/confirm login and then they can proceed. This is a minor inconvenience in exchange for much greater security and is an effective strategy to combat the increasingly sophisticated information security threats.  

 DUO phone

Summer 2018

Faculty/Staff Help Desk Remodeled and Relocated to TRC

When you enter the Library on the 2nd floor, you will notice some big changes in IITS. Over the summer several projects have changed the look of the areas occupied by the Library and IITS. In addition to remodeling the Open Computer Lab (now the Technology Learning Center), IITS has remodeled the Help Desk area and moved all of the technical staff to the back of Kellogg. For faculty and staff, you will now be assisted for all technical support issues from the Technology Resource Center located in Kellogg 2414 (TRC). IITS will have someone available to greet you just inside the door. Their job is to assist Faculty in getting the right technical or instructional support from one location. We hope to provide prompt service, but if you have to wait, there is a lounge area available and a small office space for troubleshooting and training in private. We hope that you find this new service exceeds your expectations. (Posted August 2019)

New Technology Learning Center
(Kellogg 2000 - Open Lab)

IITS completed a project over the summer that transformed the Kellogg 2000 (Open Computer Lab) into the new Technology Learning Center (TLC). This lab is heavily used by students during the day and is open 24x5 along with the Library’s second floor areas. This technology replacement and space modernization plan is a significant project, as the campus invested in an updated space design that addressed student feedback and concerns regarding the state of the computers in the Lab as well as the physical environment. (Posted August 2019)

Kellogg 2000 Open lab

Feedback was gathered from over 550 responses that expressed a strong interest in seeing this space upgraded, with 78% of students responding that they would like to see faster/new computers in the lab. The TLC project was the first remodel of the space (paint, carpet, electrical, networking) since the Library was built. The project included a full technology refresh of the lab computers and a new space layout with updated furniture that replaced the existing high-density seating that was worn out and no longer needed. The new computers include a mix of PCs and Macs, as well as some with large screens. Beginning in 2019, this lab will have a new refresh schedule, where of 25% of the computers will be replaced each summer. This new strategy will ensure that the TLC always has a mix of newer technology. (Posted August 2019)

Kellogg 2000 brody stations

Campus App Connecting Students to CSUSM

This Fall 2018, the Campus App will have a vibrant new look focusing on features students use most. In keeping with one of IITS’s strategic goals, this latest version will add increased personalization by displaying the student’s class schedule on the homepage. In this new version, students will be encouraged to Sign In by clicking a link at the top of the page. By doing this, they will be able to access new features such as their virtual ID with seamless and deep link integration into myCSUSM and Cougar Courses.  (Posted September 2019)

campus app