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Ethernet may come to dorms, ILGs

By Joey Marquez

Dormitories and independent living groups will soon receive a proposal from Information Systems on the possible installation of network cable to provide easier access to Athena, according to Cecilia R. D'Oliveira '77, director of IS network services.

At present, D'Oliveira and a committee she heads are finishing up two "different scenarios" for delivery of the system. The first would involve installing a network drop for each of the approximately 2600 undergraduate beds, while the second would place Athena clusters in every undergraduate dormitory.

In addition, the committee has produced a proposal for ILGs which would give them a "menu of options if they would like to participate," D'Oliveira said, adding that the menu includes the same proposals for the dormitories, albeit with different costs. "Different ILGs need to decide what they want for themselves," she said. D'Oliveira explained that students in both dormitories and ILGs would bear the brunt of the plan's costs.

The idea of facilitating network access in dormitories and ILGs has been discussed within IS for the past two years. "Students have come in and asked us about such an idea," she said.

Finances are the

main concern

D'Oliveira said the proposal's financial aspects are the main concern of IS. She said the Office of the Dean for Student Affairs and the Department of Housing and Food Services are working with IS to develop a means for students to pay the annual costs of continued service.

According to D'Oliveira, the first proposal would require an "up-front payment of $1.2 million" to install network lines in each room. Payment suggestions have included an addition to room and board charges and a tuition increase, but D'Oliveira said that nothing is final at this point. The bottom line, she said, is that "students have to buy into it" if this proposal is to follow through.

With final proposals due this month, D'Oliveira said that meetings with dormitories and ILGs will begin in November. If response is good, and a consensus among the dormitories forms, the next step would be approval by President Charles M. Vest and Provost Mark S. Wrighton.

"Our goal would be to start this communication, so there can be something ready for September [1992]," D'Oliveira said.