Danielle Rourke, Senior Strategist for Higher Education at Dell, an EDUCAUSE Platinum Partner, offers her perspective on the next five years of technology.
Senior Strategist, Higher Education
Danielle Rourke: - At Dell Technologies, we think that there are going to be a few different technologies and innovations that are going to be important for higher education in the next one-to-five years. As everyone knows, there have been a lot of media stories and unfortunate events around cybersecurity, hacks, ransomware, and the data of higher education institutions being leaked, or maybe even held hostage, from the college or the university. One of the most important technology solutions that we believe is going to be critical in the next five years, is really having that air gapped cybersecurity solution to ensure that extra layer of security for your sensitive data. Making sure that you have dedicated, backed-up copies of your data at regular intervals. And that you have those solid and robust plans on how to deal with any potential cybersecurity attack are all critical. You'll also want to make sure that those air gap solutions are paired with cyber recovery and identity management platforms or fabrics, that can evolve with your organization as well. Partner with a company you trust, most importantly, and hopefully that's Dell Technologies. We also feel like there are going to be some major innovations in pedagogical approaches. For example, the continued rise of open educational resources. We all know that the price of textbooks is one of the things that is keeping our underserved students from getting those higher education opportunities. So anything that we can do to create more interesting and quality open educational resources, or OER's, for faculty members across the country to utilize, is going to be an incredible benefit to all students and faculty members. We've also seen in an interactive and immersive learning; that those are really going to take center stage. Even just over the past year or two, we've seen vast increases in the amount of schools and institutions that are interested in using AR, VR, XR, in order to give that level of immersive learning to their students. Whether they're on campus, or learning remotely from their homes, or a coffee shop, that modern student is going to expect to be able to integrate immersive experiences into their learning. They, and the students of the future, have really grown up with these technologies, and expect them from their educational institutions. We also think that the past two years have really emphasized the need for more hyflex environments as well. And within that, being able to give voice and choice, to not only how the students learn and interact, but also how the faculty members are able to deliver their content in a variety of different situations. No matter what the approach is, having that educational continuity, and those hyflex environments available to your students and your faculty, will be essential over the next few years and into the future. We also see really amazing things around approaches to helping students learn in the areas or disciplines that they're passionate about. We're hearing that some students are dissatisfied with the options that they have, and don't feel like the currently available higher education pathways, match the career opportunities that they are interested in, now and what they see coming in the future. There are many different areas where we see an increase in different pedagogical approaches and new content learning coming. Such as these new and fascinating areas of climate change, digital cryptocurrencies, Esports, artificial intelligence and machine learning. These are all different opportunities for students to learn and to break into emerging industries. Higher education is poised in the perfect position to help these students learn about these new and emerging areas. And apply their new ideas to these rapidly changing career pathways that really didn't even exist a few years ago. We at Dell Technologies hope that we can partner with you on your journey for the next five years and beyond. Thank you.