Wavering wireless internet

Candice Beasley

Students may have noticed wireless Internet access is weaker, and sometimes unavailable, around campus.

Cindy Phillips, director of Information Technology Services, said NIU realizes a fully wireless campus is not only valuable but the direction in which the university needs to go to serve students and faculty.

“ITS is currently working on a strategic plan with provosts on how to make the campus 100 percent wireless,” Phillips said.

ITS is not sure when this plan will be put into action but hopes its sooner than later, Phillips said. The Holmes Student Center and Barsema Hall are the only buildings that have 100 percent wireless coverage.

“I feel like it should be some type of consistency with the wireless for the convenience,” said Caress Moss, senior hospitality administration major.

Moss has not been able to receive WiFi in Reavis Hall and finds it inconvenient when she wants to follow along in class with notes that are posted on Blackboard.

Phillips said each department would have to pay a $300 installation fee and $66 per month for wireless access and some departments choose not to.

“It’s up for conversation with our partner ITS,” said Michael Stang, executive director of Housing and Dining. All the residence halls currently have wireless access in its lounges and lobbies.

Stang said if the residence halls were to go completely wireless students would most likely have to pay an added fee.

Lisa Dinquel, freshman nursing major, said she doesn’t like the fact that the WiFi doesn’t reach her room.

Sergio Vera, sophomore sociology major, felt as though using the Ethernet cord can be a hassle at times.

“I’m scared people will trip on the cord and drop my laptop,” Vera said.

Even though wireless is in all dorm lounges, Vera said how he is too lazy to walk to his lounge in Stevenson. He said he doesn’t feel like walking all the way to the lounge to have wireless access and likes the comfort of being in his own room.

Some students who live in the dorms reap the benefit of living closer to the lounge.

“I get wireless cause I’m close to lounge,” said Kelci Tennis, sophomore communicative disorders major.

Even though Tennis lives close to the lounge, she said she feels it can be very inconvenient for those who don’t.

“You’re stuck to only where your cord allows you to go,” Tennis said.

If the dorms became 100 percent wireless, it would be a fee resident hall students would have to pay.

To find where WiFi is located, go to http://securenet.niu.edu/locations.shtml