One concern for colleges and universities across the country after the closure of campuses due to COVID-19 was how students without access to the proper technology would be able to do remote classes. To assist students struggling with that issue, the University System of New Hampshire (USNH) has set up Wi-Fi hotspots on each of their campuses, which anyone with a USNH ID will be able to log into. 

Chief Information Officer for USNH and University of New Hampshire (UNH) Bill Poirier also serves as the leader of the Enterprise Technology and Services organization.  

“We provide technology services to Granite State College, Keene State College, Plymouth State University, UNH Franklin Pierce School of Law, UNH Manchester and UNH Durham,” Poirier said. “Our teams installed these Wi-Fi hotspots at all of our USNH campuses across the Granite State.”

The hotspot for Granite State College (GSC) Concord is located at 25 Hall St., Concord; Keene State College’s is in the Science Center parking lot on Blake St.; Plymouth State University’s is on Court St., Plymouth; UNH Durham’s is at Goss Building, 121 Technology Drive, Durham; UNH Manchester’s is at 88 Commercial St., Manchester; UNH Law’s is at 2 White St., Concord; and the USNH System Office also has one at 5 Chenell Drive, Concord. 

All hotspots are now live. 

“The Wi-Fi hotspots at UNH Manchester, UNH Law and USNH Concord were activated on March 20. UNH Durham was activated on March 22. The hotspot at Plymouth was activated on March 29,” Poirier said. “These hotspots will remain active throughout the spring semester at all locations.”

KSC Chief Information Officer Laura Seraichick was also responsible for bringing these hotspots to fruition. 

“The KSC location was operational on March 26,” Seraichick said. “It’s a little too soon to see any traffic trends with regards to Wi-Fi usage at this point.”

These hotspots are also not exclusively for student use.

“All students, faculty and staff from USNH institutions can access these hotspots through the Eduroam network, a secure wireless network used by educational institutions worldwide that is available at each USNH campus. Eduroam is available in more than 100 countries and allows any user from an Eduroam-participating site to connect to other institutions connected to Eduroam,” Poirier said. “For example, a student from Keene State College can connect to Eduroam at the University of New Hampshire, and vice-versa. If you have connected to Eduroam at any USNH campus, you probably already have Eduroam installed on your device.”

According to KSC President Melinda Treadwell, KSC has also begun pairing up with Keene’s public school system to assist them with Internet access as well.

“We’ve actually worked with the K-12 school here in the Keene area to say if they need help, we’ll find ways to tunnel into that as well for their students that might need access. So we’re working with the K-12 schools as well to try to open up Internet access to that hotspot,” Treadwell said. 

“Our teams hit the ground running during a stressful time in order to get these hotspots quickly activated so our students, faculty and staff would have internet access in cases where they didn’t have wireless at home or were impacted by local internet outages,” Poirier said.

 

Rachel Vitello can be contacted at

rvitello@kscequinox.com.

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