4:00 - 4:05 p.m. - Announcements (5 minutes)


The next time ITAC meets (April 21st) will be an in-person celebration.


4:05 - 4:35 p.m. - Undergraduate Student Presentation - State of IT, (Chase Barclay, Jax Nalley, Zoe Tishaev)


What it is:  ITAC Student Representatives appointed by the Duke Student Government will present on the state of IT from the student perspective.


Why it’s relevant:  Feedback from the students allows IT administrators to hear firsthand the challenges that students face on a regular basis. This information can help set goals and priorities for various IT projects and initiatives. By presenting these viewpoints earlier in the spring semester, IT leadership can respond to the students’ issues and concerns before the end of the academic year.

Chase Barclay begins describing the state of IT for Duke University undergraduates. Survey results can be viewed here:


Chase says the goal of the survey is to assess the effectiveness and utilization of technology among a large representative portion of the undergraduate population at Duke and to discover any areas for IT improvement. The survey was released on March 28th, 2022, and students were given 1.5 weeks to complete the survey. To provide incentive, ten $20 gift cards for randomly chosen participants were provided with Duke Student Government (DSG) funding.

There were 163 respondents:

·      56 Freshman

·      58 Sophomores

·      31 Juniors

·      18 Seniors

Respondents were likely disproportionately:

·      Friends of DSG

·      More tech-savvy

·      More dissatisfied

·      ITAC representatives and friends: more freshman and sophomores

27 Computer Science majors, 19 Biology majors, and 16 Economics majors represented the highest percentage of survey respondents. Other majors represented include Psychology, Public Policy, Biomedical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Neuroscience and Mathematics. Most respondents use macOS and iOS. The preferred internet browser is Chrome.

Chase then provided survey feedback on trending academic technology:

  1. Zoom
    1. The majority of respondents were satisfied and very satisfied with Zoom.
    2. Some complained of Zoom calls dropping due to campus Wi-Fi.
    3. Students particularly like Zoom/Sakai Integration and hybrid learning and especially like recordings.
    4. Students like waiting rooms better than passcodes.


  1. Gradescope – very popular service and there were no complaints.


  1. Sakai
    1. Overall, most students were satisfied.
    2. Usability with multiple tabs doesn’t always work. (This has been a complaint for 4 years.)
    3. Faculty don’t use Sakai well. (This has been a complaint for 4 years.)
    4. Students want Canvas.
    5. Students want better mobile UI.
    6. Students want notification spam with conversations reduced; sometimes Chase receives 40-50 emails per day for class communication as an example.
    7. Student Requests:
      1. Ability to download multiple resources at once
      2. One page where all courses’ assignments/grades can be seen
      3. Ability to open pages in new tabs
      4. Improved/streamlined conversations
      5. Button to go back to the previous page so don’t have to physically click on the previous page.
    8. Student Recommendations:
      1. Improve homepage with the ability to resize icons/boxes and by providing unified assignments and grade book listings.
      2. Remove unexpected logout or extend DuoPush timeout.
      3. Train professors.


  1. DukeHub 2.0
    1. Students are more satisfied with the overall structure and ease of use.
    2. Course evaluation and registration have the highest number of dissatisfied respondents.
    3. The Financial Aid Page is not used much. A large number do not use My Planner.
    4. Feature familiarity is getting better.
    5. Some students are unfamiliar with Drop If Enrolled and Declaring Your Major feature.


  1. Email – general satisfaction with email although G Suite is desired and spam from Sakai Conversations is annoying.


  1. OneDrive and Duke Calendar are not used much by students so no direct feedback, but students want Google Drive.


  1. Duo Push shows an inverted satisfaction curve with many dissatisfied and some satisfied. Among the dissatisfied students, some don’t like the extra step, and some say it doesn’t work and that they haven’t been able to get it to work. Students would like to expand Duo Push for longer than 72 hours. Students want Duke Unlock and want better communication around Duke Unlock.


  1. Box – most are satisfied or don’t use so limited comments.


  1. Duke Mobile
    1.  Equal numbers of dissatisfied and satisfied students with many students being unaware of the existence of Duke Mobile.
    2. Dissatisfied comments include: “very glitchy and hard to use”, and “tends to crash” when linking pages in the mobile app.


  1. ePrint
    1. Equal numbers of satisfied and dissatisfied students
    2. Complaints include:
      1. Difficulties changing to color or between single and double-sided.
      2. Constantly having to email prints.
      3. ePrint doesn’t always work and crashes often.
      4. Pharos is laggy.
      5. Online printer status guide needs to be easier and clearer.
      6. Struggles for Android users have been reported.


  1. Transloc/Rider has an improved response over past years with 55 satisfied respondents and 35 dissatisfied respondents. There are complaints that the Transloc app does not work sometimes, and the app is often not accurate in reflecting bus time, number, and location.


  1. Less Used Technologies feedback (most respondents don’t use):
    1. 25Live Room Reservation – slow response times.
    2. TV Boxes in dorms – often don’t work, don’t have the necessary equipment, are impossible to navigate, and need clearer instructions.
    3. University Desktop Computers – 126 of the 163 respondents don’t use them.
    4. Duke Virtual Machines – crash often and run incredibly slowly although 15% are satisfied.

Zoe Tishaev, then, talks about Duke Wi-Fi. Respondents mostly want more/better outdoor connectivity including at:

·      Zen gardens at the Wellness Center

·      The chairs outside of Grainger Hall

·      East Campus

·      Upstairs areas of West Union

·      Duke Gardens

Zoe says that students would like a way to report Wi-Fi outages in various buildings. There were also complaints that devices don’t automatically connect to Duke Blue.

As far as cellular phone student experience, AT&T has the most satisfaction followed by Verizon. Students reported T Mobile having issues inside buildings. Cellular service at the East Campus bus stop and on the C1 bus route had complaints as well.

Mobile Duke card was mostly positive for those using iPhones but there were many complaints about use with Androids. DukeCard on Android tends to not work randomly on numerous card readers. Specific card readers where DukeCard does not work especially with Android phones were mentioned:

  1. 3rd floor entrance of 1C and A of Edens
  2. Entrances to Craven, and Kilgo M and O
  3. DukeCard payment struggles in West Union, Bella Union, etc.
  4. Entrance of lab at GSRBII
  5. Laundry payments
  6. Scanners at Twinnies and The Perk don’t work for Androids
  7. The Lobby Shop has problems with Apple Pay
  8. Lots of vending machines do not work with mobile card


Outlet accessibility had the most dissatisfaction for outdoor study spaces. Some would like more outlets in dining rooms followed by classrooms.

As far as Duke licensed software, the main request was for more communication and advertising (for example, Adobe Creative Cloud.)  Requests include: Canva Pro (x7), STATA (x4), and GraphPad Prism (x2).

SMS texting was more skewed toward negative as compared to last year; the main take-away was not to overload students with texts. The main take-away for Cyber Security was that about a third don’t have a good sense of how to protect themselves so more advertising and communication around Cyber Security is wanted.


Jax Nalley speaks to survey results related to Duke Communication platforms. The most popular platforms among undergraduate respondents are Slack, GroupMe, and iMessage. Discord and Teams are not popular among students. 80% of the respondents use Slack.


Jax also reported on newspaper use. 95% of respondents read the New York Times and Jax mentioned that DSG subsidizes the New York Times. 70% read the Wall Street Journal and 30% read The Washington Post. Requests included:

  • Local newspapers like the News and Observer
  • Popular periodicals like Time Magazine, the New Yorker, and The Atlantic
  • The Economist and the Financial Times
  • International news sources like the BBC, Le Monde, El Pais


Only 13% of respondents have smart devices at home.  Smart devices in dorm rooms are reported to have many issues including difficulty connecting and having random residents connecting to the smart device and being pranked.


Students mostly seek help for IT resources amongst their friends followed by Duke websites.


Jax concludes with Most Frustrating Aspects of Your Experience with Duke IT Services:


  1. Wi-Fi connectivity
  2. Issues with ePrint likely tied to Pharos app
  3. Computer repairs and phone repairs have to be done off-campus
    1. Would like more loaners
    2. Were told to go to SouthPoint mall but students don’t have the means
  4. Students are not familiar with IT services, so more communication is needed
  5. Long wait times and back and forth with IT


Chase concludes the presentation with final takeaways:


  1. Transloc/Rider is still an issue – inaccurate locations, wait times, and schedules.
  2. Duke Mobile is underutilized and there are complaints about design and functionality.
  3. Outdoor Wi-Fi connectivity and outlet accessibility is still wanted.
  4. Faculty implementation of Sakai needs improvement.
  5. Mobile DukeCard is a student favorite but there are many concerns about Android accessibility.
  6. Slack continues to be very popular.
  7. DukeHub has been well-received.
  8. Struggles with ePrint
  9. DuoPush dissatisfaction; consider longer login times and communication of Duke Unlock


Q. David MacAlpine – Is print use declining in general or is it still a heavily used service?


A. Chase – Print is being used a lot more now that students are back on campus and in class. The Pharos app had a lot of problems and negative feedback; that so many problems were found is probably due to increased printing.


Q. Paula Batton – Are students aware that they can drop off their devices at The Link to be taken to Computer Care and Repair?


A. Jax – For the most part, no they are not aware and more advertisement of this is needed.


Q. Paula – Are students asking to have an Apple rep?


A. Jax – Yes, students are asking for an Apple rep so maybe more Apple expertise would be helpful. Some students don’t go to the Link and seek help elsewhere.


Q. Paul Jaskot – Where are the humanists on this survey? I think if ITAC was informed of the survey going out, ITAC members would love to forward the survey to their students. I would tell my students that this is very important for Art and Art History students to fill out.


A. Chase – This is a great idea and will do going forward.


A. Tracy Futhey – Great job to the students! It is fantastic to hear all of this and the details, for example, the exact locations are very helpful.


4:35 - 5:05 p.m. - Graduate Student Presentation - State of IT, (Chas Kissick, Brandon Le)


What it is:  ITAC Student Representatives appointed by the Graduate & Professional Student Council will present on the state of IT from the student perspective.


Why it’s relevant:  Feedback from the students allows IT administrators to hear firsthand the challenges that students face on a regular basis. This information can help set goals and priorities for various IT projects and initiatives. By presenting these viewpoints earlier in the spring semester, IT leadership can respond to the students’ issues and concerns before the end of the academic year.


Brandon Le, a 4th-year Genetics and Genomics Ph.D. student, reports on the Graduate student survey which had 18-20 respondents. Most respondents were from the Fuqua School of Business followed by participants from the Graduate School and Sanford School of Public Policy. There was some representation from the Nicholas School of the Environment, the Divinity School, and the School of Medicine. Missing was the Law School, the School of Nursing, and the Pratt School of Engineering. Most respondents were in their first or second year of graduate school. There was an equal division of respondents from STEM and non-STEM programs.


Brandon provides survey results on the following:



  1. Wi-Fi – used daily mostly; some don’t come to campus much so use weekly
  2. Email – use daily
  3. Sakai – use daily; access classes and run classes
  4. DukeHub – used as a resource to sign up for classes; otherwise, never used
  5. Duke Box – varied use: some use daily, some use rarely or never
    1. Some use Google Drive
    2. Some use Duke Data Services as a repository where they can FTP files
  6. Computing Labs – don’t use much; have own CPUs and CPUs are in labs
  7. OIT Help Desk – don’t use; Fuqua, Law, and Medicine have their own help desks
  8. CoLab Studios – most never heard of it and rarely use it
  9. Zoom – most use daily
  10. Canvas – some use daily; some never
  11. SymMon – some monthly; some never given the waning severity of the pandemic
  12. Lynda – never heard of it or never use; maybe advertisement is needed
  13. Coursera – most never use


Satisfaction Levels:

  1. Duke Wi-Fi – Graduate students sometimes have problems but good to great satisfaction; the research buildings have good Wi-Fi
  2. Duke email
    1. no problems and are satisfied
    2. most access email via desktop clients; some via owa
  3. ePrint – varied satisfaction/dissatisfaction distribution but most don’t use
  4. There is general dissatisfaction among Computing Labs, OIT Help Desk, CoLab, and Coursera.
  5. Zoom – extremely satisfied
  6. Duke Software offerings unawareness has decreased
  7. Security – most are extremely and somewhat satisfied
  8. Duke Computing Cluster or VMs – 3 use and are somewhat satisfied
  9. Co-Lab – 12 are unaware of the Co-Lab



Brandon then reviewed responses to Messaging systems for communication. Most use Slack. WhatsApp, GroupMe, and Teams are also popular. Some love Teams and say it is reliable; some say Teams is unreliable. Some appreciate the teleconferencing and video conferencing in Teams. Some already use Slack so are not motivated to use Teams. Some request Google Drive. Most set up a Zoom meeting link and send it through Slack.


Most respondents were equipped to securely handle work or research data. A few were not well-equipped.


Most go through social media, Slack, or Teams to find events. Fuqua has a student-run Slack that includes all approximately 2,000 students. Many are dependent on word of mouth and channels not sponsored by Duke. Some use Facebook to find out about events. Brandon thinks advertising in this area would be beneficial.


Brandon concludes with areas for Improvement:

  1. Wi-Fi connection – spotty in some areas of campus and in some offices
  2. There are Fuqua-specific issues with Wi-Fi, printers, and software (i.e., too many software programs are needed)
  3. DukeHub – not intuitive


Brandon apologizes for the low turn-out of respondents.


Q. Tracy Futhey – Thank you for this effort. It is important for us to hear so thank you.


Q. Robert Wolpert – Do you have ideas on how to get more participation?


A. Brandon – A gift card incentive would be helpful if it could be funded by this group. Many surveys were sent out, but the graduate population is very decentralized, and email sent to the all graduate student list doesn’t always get a response.


A. David MacAlpine – There was only one for Duke Med so send the next survey to DGS (Director of Graduate Studies) and we will help.


A. Tracy Futhey – Logan will help us remember this and send it to DGS as well.


5:05pm - 5:30 p.m. - Cybersecurity Tabletop Scenario Review and Discussion, (John Board)


What it is: Duke routinely conducts tabletop drills to validate our institutional readiness to face a wide variety of emergencies and disasters.  Recently, one of these exercises was centered on a major cybersecurity incident.  The drills look at both the efforts of the relevant operational teams to respond to the actual threat and the responsibilities of executive leadership to manage the incident itself and its fallout.  John Board will summarize learnings from the most recent exercise.


Why it is important: Emergencies at Duke are not theoretical; various bad and unfortunate things happen with some regularity on a campus as large as ours. It is important that Duke revalidate its ability to respond to traditional as well as novel threats, and that new leaders at Duke understand their roles if and when such events occur. Our tabletop drills help maintain this readiness.


John Board begins by saying that one of his jobs is as an IT representative to Duke’s Emergency Team. Real bad scary horrible things are emerging all the time and this group seeks to hone Duke’s response and Duke’s remediation with a practice event. Events can include such things as severe weather, active shooters, and security breaches.


Last week, Duke’s Emergency Team completed a test of Duke’s ability to respond to an emerging event and to strategically respond to the event as it unfolded. About two dozen participants were involved from various areas including IT, communications, police, facilities, student affairs, and others. The highest level of Duke executive leadership was apprised as the event proceeded.  The idea was to have a real-time event compressed into 3 hours but there was still more to do after 3 hours. The event is scripted and facilitated by an outside consultant with many Duke details, so the event appeared very plausible. John will focus on the process as opposed to the details of the practice event.


John emphasized the sensitivity required for such an event. Early on, the Emergency Team knew that they didn’t know everything. Later on, the “fog of war” started to lift, and they had a better sense of what was going on. The question becomes what to communicate when as the event unfolds. The event started Friday morning and was brought to the Team’s awareness through an unexpected mechanism: a Duke employee’s machine had a novel attack, and the user does work on very sensitive data. The question arose: Is this a random attack on a single victim or is Duke being targeted? It took the better part of the day to discover that this was indeed a problem. So the team had to decide if staff should be made aware right before the weekend.


Many non-IT participants wondered why an alarm wasn’t sounded at the beginning of this event. Duke Security said that this scenario is “any day in the life of the Security Office” so it is necessary to see if the threat is real and not to sound an alarm until clarity is attained. Overnight, clarity was obtained, and the threat was very serious. Many staff from the same office had been affected and the vector was found to be a staff member’s social media account. The attack came from an unfriendly nation so there was no help to be had from that government. Probing machines provided problematic as well as this could trigger tripwires set up by the attackers. Now, the event had escalated into an emergency situation.


At this point, Duke’s Emergency Team knew the nature of the leak and the equipment infected. The Emergency Team knew a lot had been taken and that it was time to communicate the breach. Duke Executive leadership was brought in to determine what Duke needed to do as an institution at this point.  Communications and financial implications needed to be addressed. John asks for Tracy’s comments.


Tracy says that the scary thing that was of greatest concern was not that Duke has a need to protect its sensitive data but that the mission of Duke requires a degree of openness. Duke is not a corporation that can lock down everything.  Also, we think we are good at managing incidents, but do we have an event horizon in place, and situations like this quickly shift from the IT space to the university leadership role in managing an incident at the higher levels.


John says that the Security Office knew the right people to talk to at Duke – the council’s office, etc. Duke’s playbook does seem to be solid. The two dozen Duke leaders know each other and know who needs to be notified. The question is how does Duke transition into larger incident management above the technical management. In this particular test scenario, extortion was involved so executive leadership was necessary beyond the technical management.