Eduroam: a tale of weary students and sub-par tech support

Illustration by Liz Coffee
Illustration by Liz Coffee

Never did the days of door-to-door Encyclopedia salesmen and signing up for a library card seem more efficient than campus-wide wireless Internet when it came to student success.

But alas, here we are.

Since the launch of Eduroam last semester, students have been lined up outside of IT Support Services seeking help with problems ranging from simple login issues to the antivirus software actually crashing their hard drives.

Ironic considering the entire point of the new wireless system was to make connection effortless and continuous across campuses all over— not only the United States, but the world.

It’s not surprising that the program has this many bugs because it is a hefty program that was implemented very quickly. Still, it is startling how few answers and help students who are struggling with the software are getting from IT Support Services.

Students have major concerns about downloading antivirus software that is making them lock their devices, as well as the fact that students’ devices are still using data when connected to Eduroam, which shouldn’t happen with a wireless connection.

It’s also worrisome that tech people have the ability to jump on an Eduroam user’s device and make these changes without the his or her permission.

A simple solution to this could be that professionals backing Eduroam could host seminars where they:

  • explain the new wireless benefits
  • give reasons behind the passcode requirements and antivirus software
  • offer a crash course on how to deal with the general bugs that the majority of students seem to be experiencing

With these seminars, students will hopefully get a better handle on the new wireless and join the small population of users who have beat the odds and are getting the very best of Eduroam.

Offering alternative connections on campus also could ease student frustrations.

Last semester while the campus was still adjusting to Eduroam, the wireless network CSUChico was still available to students to make wireless connection easier.

Since Eduroam still has a number of bugs, reintroducing CSUChico as an alternative connection could be very beneficial to the students as well as the IT Support Services professionals to keep them from getting overloaded with complaints all at once.

In the mean time, though, skip waiting in the tech line to get your Internet working.
Instead, head across the way to the library where you can scour the Britannica for Ben Affleck’s height and who he dated before Jennifer Garner.