Simultaneous Registration Made Official

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Simultaneous Registration Made Official

IT assured College Council that it has systems in place to cope with the increased logins. (Michelle Quinn/The Observer)

IT assured College Council that it has systems in place to cope with the increased logins. (Michelle Quinn/The Observer)

IT assured College Council that it has systems in place to cope with the increased logins. (Michelle Quinn/The Observer)

IT assured College Council that it has systems in place to cope with the increased logins. (Michelle Quinn/The Observer)

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By JENNY MCNARY
Layout Editor
Published: February 26, 2015

On Thursday, Feb. 12, Fordham College at Lincoln Center’s (FCLC) College Council announced that all Fordham undergraduates will be registering simultaneously for fall 2015, which tentatively begin on March 23. The last time both campuses registered was for Fall 2014, when the My.Fordham site crashed. 

This year, Fordham’s Information Technology (IT) team is more confident that it can handle the increase of student logins. “There are going to be two different places for you to log on to register. Two different places will reduce this bottleneck,” Elizabeth Cornell, IT communications specialist, said. 

Other precautions were taken in order to ensure that the site will not crash this time around. “They have in fact hired an outside firm that does load testing for systems, they simulate the demand on the servers from the sorts of things that would happen during registration,” Robert Moniot, associate dean of FCLC, stated. “They came up with a number for how many simultaneous actions that the server could handle.” This testing will ensure that the servers will be able to handle the increased number of students this year registering at the same time. 

Last year, the number of students was accounted for, but IT did not anticipate that students would be logging in on multiple devices. Students logged onto multiple devices so when one of their devices, “did not give them a quick response they would go to the other one,” according to Moniot. “By doing this, they basically tripled the numbers of requests … IT wasn’t prepared for triple the load.” IT has now accommodated the system to handle this many students, but Moniot urges students not to log in to more than one device. “You have to understand that by doing that you are adding to the load on the system and increasing the odds that it will break down for registration.” 

This procedure will be a great improvement to last year’s spur of the moment decision to have some of the deans register students through their own banner that did not crash along with the students. This was started by Rev. Vincent DeCola, S.J., who was then dean of freshmen but is now the dean of Gabelli School of Business at Lincoln Center (GSBLC). Other deans were soon to help once the students were lined down the hall. 

To accommodate the increase of students registering at the same time, “there is going to be a breakdown of credits,” Moniot explained. The deans have not yet decided on an official number of the credit separation, but there will be two groups of students for each class grouping of credits that will registering on two different days. 

IT and Moniot are confident that no problems will occur. If any problems do occur, IT “will be watching closely for problems so we can respond quickly if anything goes wrong, however we don’t anticipate any problems,” Cornell assured.

The official procedure for a site crash during registration has still not been agreed upon. If there is a serious system failure, Moniot wants to cancel registration for the day and have registration postponed for that particular class until the next day. Moniot stated, “Then Fordham IT will get on the job and get it fix[ed], so that they will be ready to open up the gates for the next day.”

Simultaneous registration is helping bring the two campuses together, which has been a goal of the University since its restructuring. “We were all told one university, two campuses, one department …” Gwyneth Jackaway, associate chair of the communication and media studies program at FCLC said, “so it seems that our registration policies should reflect that vision.” When people apply to Fordham University, they are told that they will be able to apply to classes at both campuses. Simultaneous registration will allow an equality between the campuses for courses.

There are mixed feelings about this form of registration as students are skeptical of whether or not IT can pull through. “There’s really no point for simultaneous registration considering how it turned out last year,” Brianna Rivera, FCLC ’17. “They should know that it is just going to be another headache for them,” she said. Other students have more confidence in Fordham IT. “I think that if Fordham is prepared to handle simultaneous registration, I have confidence in their ability to handle it,” Jonathan Olmez, FCLC ’17, said. “I just hope what happened last year doesn’t happen again.” Both Olmez and Rivera had to wait in line at the deans office last year, and are wary about Fordham IT pulling through.

“Last time they tried this the computer system crashed so everyone is going to be holding their breath, and see if that doesn’t happen this time,” Jackaway said. 

Moniot urges students to check their email as registration tentatively begins March 23.