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Ask the experts: Athletics and activities …

What solutions do you provide to campus clients seeking to improve service delivery in student activities such as athletics, intramurals, recreation facilities, etc.?

Tom Bell, VP Industry Relations, Blackboard
What a great question. Campus athletic and recreation facilities have become complex facilities offering a vast array of services to students, faculty, staff and guests. Services provided in these facilities range from full service concessions to vending to access control. Blackboard is providing our clients with a range of wireless connectivity options, card reader hardware and POS/Activity software solutions to ensure the perfect “fit” for each campus as they manage their unique vending, food service, concession, activity, vending and access control applications.

Blackboard’s transaction/card reader components can be configured to communicate over a wide spectrum of communications methodologies including wireless, IP, serial and dial-up networks. Additionally, our Transaction System integrates with several third-party wireless reader solutions to seamlessly support POS and activity transactions via an IP interface through our comprehensive Building Blocks Partner program.

Blackboard’s Multi-Function Reader is an IP native card reader that can operate a variety of devices with a quick swipe of the official student identification card. These may be used to dispense tokens, golf balls or operate a turnstile. The Blackboard Activity Reader may authorize a specific activity that may require a prepaid fee. Equipment loan is a good example as it relates to athletic facilities.

Cindy McCall, Marketing Manager, CBORD
CBORD’s Odyssey PCS Campus-wide Card System provides campus clients the ability to access recreation facilities, check out equipment, purchase tickets for upcoming events, and enter turnstiles at stadiums all with just their campus ID card. We offer a wide variety of privilege verification options including activity groups and linked activities. Additionally, CBORD offers specialized activities such as check cashing and age verification where additional controls beyond the standard yes/no are required.

Mark Reinart, Manager, Marketing and Business Development, Diebold
Diebold CS Gold provides a wide range of options to manage student activities and events. Most commonly the CS Entitlements application is used to instantaneously verify eligibility to grant or restrict a cardholder’s privilege. System administrators have total flexibility to establish the criteria they wish to make these yes/no decisions. Some schools have used the power of CS Gold Access to automatically manage access to recreation facilities and events. Two examples are: (1) Kent State University uses Diebold access readers to activate turnstiles into their impressive student recreation center, and (2) West Virginia University uses a biometric hand geometry reader and CS Access to activate turnstiles into their recreation center. At WVU they have eliminated the need for students to carry ID cards in their pocketless gym shorts as they enter WVU’s state-of-the-art recreation center. There are many more examples of how the one system integrated applications of Entitlements, Access, Stored Value, and Alarms Management are combined to meet the needs of activities management on campuses nationwide. CS Gold campus users have found some very creative ways to leverage the power of their card system.

Fred Emery, Systems Marketing, General Meters Corp.
In order to improve service in the area of student activities we offer a wide array of software, as well as hardware, to assist in athletics, intramurals and recreation facilities. Our Recreation Module allows a campus to rent, reserve or assign equipment to an individual. If you need to see who has a basketball or tennis racket, simply run the appropriate report. You may also determine all overdue equipment by assigning a return date and time at time of checkout. It is also excellent for keeping track of athletic uniforms as well.

For athletic events, concerts or any time a ticket is needed, you may use our Event Services Module to assign an event or series of events to an individual. If a student wants to purchase a concert ticket or even season football tickets simply assign them the event or event series. When they enter the event simply swipe their card through a card reader for verification. Paper tickets become a thing of the past.

Our line of access readers are excellent in assisting with member entry to a recreation facility, allowing speedy entrance for those with appropriate access while assisting the campus staff with access control. Service can also be improved at athletic events or other student activities, such as campus films, by using one of our financial readers to accept the campus card as a form of payment for tickets.

If events are held on intramural fields or at remote sites, simply use out Pocket 1Card(TM) handheld reader as a way to control access, verify a students status or conduct a financial transaction. It fits in the palm of the hand and will allow you to swipe cards to keep track of students assigned to an intramural team or even check the birth date for age-restricted events.

Cam Richardson, CEO, ITC Systems
The ITC Systems’ Facility Manager Solution is addressing the robust needs for athletics and activities on campus.   As an example, Durham College had a requirement in their Athletic Department for the following:

  • Dynamic link to Student Information System (SIS)
  • Complete inventory tracking by users (students)
  • Multi location of Inventory (hockey equipment, basketballs, racquets, helmets, etc.)
  • Facility Manager for Court/gym reservation
  • Turnstile Access Control to sports facilities
  • Statistical Reporting on equipment usage, demographic usage, and fees and statements’ generation

ITC Systems provided a solution that tracks their inventory, applies student to checked inventory, charges late fines, operates entrance turnstiles, provides reservation services and runs required reports. This solution can extend to parking, Audio Visual Department and so forth to track students and assets easily.

Charles Cagliostro, President, Tokenworks
We provide two turnkey low cost handheld magnetic ID card solutions. The first is an attendance solution that includes a handheld computer, magnetic card reader and attendance application called CardScribe (see www.CardScribe.com for  details). The second is an ID card verification solution that again includes a handheld computer, magnetic card reader and ID card database application called CardDB (see www.CardDB.com for details).  Many of our customers tell us that CardDB pays for itself in just one weekend!

Chris Rizzetto, Director-Higher Ed, Vision Database Systems
Through our on-line, off-line, and portable RapIDSTATUS and RapIDVERIFY solutions we can use an ID card and/or biometric to verify eligibility/entrance into campus facilities and events based upon any user defined criteria. Our solutions also collect and log all activity, so the who, what, when, and where is tracked. Not only can security risks be minimized, the data can also be used for analyzing demographics to target market events, track attendance, etc. Our products are designed to be non-proprietary so that they integrate easily with existing campus technologies, so regardless of what type of ID card technology or systems are being issued on campus, VDS can use it-and the campus can use VDS.

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