Back in 2001 I was hired at the College of Mount Saint Vincent to head up their Title V Federal Grant program. I was the grant coordinator and the Director of the Teacher Learning Center. My center and office was on the 4th floor of the Administration building on the campus which bordered on the Hudson River and Westchester county. Actually, it was located in Riverdale, which is in the Bronx.
The Goals of the Grant were already written down and approved. I was to tutor the entire full-time faculty in Classroom technology or Instructional Technology as it is also called. I developed a laptop loaning system adding on more and more laptop computers each of the five years of the grant. The desktop computers being used were hybrids and many were broken and could not be used. Few faculty had laptops because they could not afford them. If they enrolled in the Title V Instructional training program for a semester they were paid $1600. as a stipend and could borrow a laptop for free.
The second major goal was to upgrade the technology in the classrooms. None of the classrooms had wifi capability and there was no internet access either except In offices and the Library. My job was to install internet access in all the classrooms and a projector in the ceiling that could attach to a laptop computer to run Powerpoint slide lectures. In addition the largest TV of the day a 36 inch screen was to be installed on the front wall of all classrooms with a rack underneath for a CD/DVD player. Electric movie screens were installed rather than manual because they were safer and quicker. Portable computer carts were available with the laptop and printer that could hook up to the overhead projector in each classroom. Lastly, sound speakers were installed in the ceilings to provide better sound in the classroom. I managed to install 27 smart classrooms in four years and I saved $200,000 in the process.
Another major item in the grant was the installation of a new school administrative software system called, Banner. We would share this system with Manhattan College and they would help to install the modules and the Grant would pay for the whole system plus training. A Registrar module was first installed and the staff trained. Following that was the Financial module to be used by the VP of Financial Activities. A student based module for the Dean was installed, Next a Director of personnel module was installed. The servers were upgraded and modernized to handle the faster software.
The professional system called, “Blackboard,” was purchased and installed on all Manhattan College faculty computers and the College of Mount Saint Vincent computers. I was the main administrator for the first two years and then the College of Manhattan took over. I had to teach all the Mount faculty how to use the Blackboard system. Manhattan developed an automatic student enrollment software so that the faculty did not have to manually type in all their students. Course curriculums and rules and regulations as well as grading guidelines were posted online. Quizzes and Tests could be administered online and manually or automatically graded. E-mail or class assignments were submitted to a lockbox which recorded the time and day and student who submitted the assignment. Faculty could than at their convenience look at the submissions from the students.
I trained two assistants, Christine was my teaching assistant and she could also speak Tagalog the Filipino language and Py Liv Sun was my administrative assistant whom I taught to use Excel and keep track of all purchase orders relating to the grant.
After five years at the Mount my job was done. I completed the final grant report and all finances were spent and the budget balanced.