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Viewpoints Online

Editorial: Riverside City College network affects success

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Students, faculty and staff struggle to maintain connection with the network at RCC

College map courtesy of Riverside City College. Wifi legend by Paola Palacios.

Wi-Fi which magically lights up three bars on the side of your cellphone and laptop has been a problem for students at Riverside City College while the hardwired network connection that assures your PC has network connection has plagued some instructors’ classrooms.

Overall, it has been a detriment to those who attempt to use it.

When the Wi-Fi or network is unavailable it seems a snail could slither a mile before you can access a web browser. Unless you have data or a hot spot plan with the carrier through your cellphone, which most students don’t, it makes it difficult to do essential class work according to some students.

“The time I did use it, it literally didn’t let me do anything. Like not even simple stuff, so I just started using my own data,” said Raul Victorio an RCC student.

Various instructors rely internet connectivity as well to check the attendance or display their lecture via the computer and projector.

An instructor’s entire lesson can revolve around the use of the internet connection that the college provides and when the school’s internet access is sluggish or not available it disrupts the entire educational process that they have laid out for their classes.

Most of the classes taught at RCC revolve around internet access such as using Open Campus for homework assignments, power points, or displaying YouTube videos primarily for lecture classes.

“As a full time student, I regularly use the Wi-Fi to get my homework done but I constantly find myself spending too much time on a homework assignment since most of the time the Wi-Fi is slow,” Ada Gudino, an RCC student, said.

Mark Oliver, the network manager at the Riverside Community College District, sent out an email to all RCC faculty on Sept. 22, 2016, acknowledging the issue.

“Many of you are aware that our connection to the internet has been extremely low as of late. I wanted to send this email out to let you know that we are aware of the issue and have been working on it,” Oliver said. 

In a following email sent Sept. 26, 2016, he said they had identified areas that were contributing to our internet speed issues, however the issue persists.

Oliver has not responded to our requests for an interview.

In a separate email sent out to RCCD on Sept. 13, 2016, by an IT staff member they said they do not have enough resources to deal with the situation.

“Yes we are aware that the connection to the internet is impacted … But due to lack of proper funding, the issue cannot be resolved as swiftly,” they stated.

“We are working as hard and as fast as we can with the staff and the budget allocated to us to get this fixed,” they added. “The bottom line of this issue is money, and unless the school invests in it, the problem will not be corrected.

While the college administration has most likely done their best allocating the college funds it has failed to understand that an investment in network connections can translate to better student outcomes and help lower unnecessary stress.

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