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ITS to put an end to free printing on campus

By Megan Severe
On February 2, 2012

Tech's Information Technology Services is implementing a new printing system designed to reduce paper and toner waste.

The Pharos Uniprint system has been installed and is expected to continue to expand this spring, around spring break. Students are already being required to scan their Eagle cards in order to release their printing jobs, though no charges are incurring.

"We are trying to get people used to using this process and how it works," Annette Littrell, ITS manager, said.

ITS will be watching and monitoring the process.

Students, faculty and staff will be given a 250-300 page quota each semester, with charges accumulating once the quota is exceeded. Students printing more paper than the allowed quota will be charged via their Eagle card.

The first labs to use the system will be in Clement Hall, Johnson Hall and the Learning Commons. Henderson Hall will be using the system once classes resume there.

Quota cannot be rolled forward to the following semester. The quota renews at the start of each new term. At the end of each semester, the quota is erased.

Once the initial quota is used, printing will cost 10 cents per single-sided page or 15 cents per double-sided page. Students printing double-sided will receive a discount and be allowed 330 sheets.

Sarah Williams, a Tech student, said she has had professors who require paper copies rather than e-mail or iLearn dropbox submissions and recommend students to print off PowerPoints because information is covered too quickly in class for students to write it down.

"I've started bringing my iPad to class to download PowerPoints and take notes from that, but there are professors who don't allow iPads or laptops," Williams said. "I understand Tech wanting to go green, but not at the cost of making the lives of broke college kids more difficult."

Littrell said a lot of different universities are already using this system. Danny Reese, ITS vice president, said the system is something the University has thought about for several years.

"It is time to be able to control the issue and let students print what they need to print," he said. "We're one of the last TBR schools to implement a solution to the problem."

Faculty will be asked to be more aware of the issue and try to find alternatives to printing methods. Reese said turning in notes electronically could be one suggestion.

"Faculty could choose to have their notes printed by Printing Services and it come out by the bookstore," Reese said. "Printing in the Learning Commons is a lot more costly than through Printing Services."

Some departments may choose not to use the system. Littrell said if the department chooses to opt out they will provide their own toner and paper.

The money for the Pharos system installation came from other campus funds received, not the students' fees. Littrell said the Pharos system will help save money to use for students.

"It will help us save paper and free up technology dollars to use for students," she said.

In 2008, the price for toner and paper started doubling each semester. Littrell said students started noticing recycling bins were overflowing with paper.

SGA passed a resolution in 2006 regarding printing services, calling for greener printing and less waste.

Lee Gatts, President of SGA, said it will take a semester to see how it will go.

"Specific majors require more printing for studying than others," Gatts said.

Reese said most of the feedback from students about the system has been positive.

While being off campus, students may send their print jobs to the printer and building of their choice on campus. The print job will be held until the student swipes his or her Eagle card.

"Students who are in a hurry can already have their print jobs waiting for them on campus," Littrell said. "We hope students will appreciate that."

These features are coming soon. For more information, visit www.tntech.edu/its.

 


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