SF State added a new wireless system to campus Monday that will work alongside the existing Wi-Fi to allow guests from participating schools to easily access the Internet for free.
The system, eduroam, boosts access to the Internet throughout campus and works on other participating campuses to ensure an easy connection for both staff, students and researchers traveling to other schools.
“It stands for education roaming,” said Ellen Rayz, executive director of network and telecommunication services. “(It’s) global Wi-Fi roaming for academia, basically, and by global I mean worldwide – a secure, worldwide wireless roaming for international research and the education community.”
According to eduroam’s website, the product is “one large, world-wide hotspot.” Although this will not replace SF State’s wireless access, it will allow campus guests to be able to log into any participating school’s Wi-Fi without any extra work by the campus’ IT department.
With many neighboring schools using eduroam, such as Cal State East Bay since 2015, and Cal State Monterey Bay since 2014, it allows students to stay connected with each other and utilize the Wi-Fi the way they would at their home campus.
Rayz also said this can help people from across the globe when visiting SF State or any other participating institution, because they may not know how to navigate around campus, let alone get access the Internet. With eduroam, they can log in with their credentials and access the information they need from both their participating campus and ours.
Since SF State didn’t offer Wi-Fi to guests in the past, this will allow many new students and faculty from other campuses access to the Internet.
“When they come in and don’t know anybody or anything, and they don’t know where the help desk is, and they have no network connectivity to find out even where to go or who to call, they can connect to the network using their credentials that they use back home,” Rayz said.
This new wireless program is supposed to supplement the existing Wi-Fi on campus, not replace it.
SF State geography major Sam Fischbein said the service on campus can be spotty.
“It definitely depends on where you are on campus,” Fischbein said. “Sometimes I’ll be working on something, and then the Wi-Fi will just be down for like 10 minutes, and then you’ll have to re-up it.”
Eduroam will also help students who are studying abroad for the same reason, to stay easily connected with the Internet and SF State.
“Its complimentary to visitors,” Rayz said. “Our students can also use it, and our professors and our faculty can also use it. … It works both ways.”