Tennessee State University officials are working on an all-inclusive, access-card system for students that will serve as an identification badge, a debit card, a ticket for food and events, and a key to their dormitories.
The proposed new system would replace the existing FOB (Frequency Operated Button) scheme that only gives students access to the residence halls, according to Dr. Adrian Samuels, Vice President for Student Affairs.
“We are looking at systems that utilize wireless and traditional swipe methods such as the ‘Blink’ technology found in the JP Morgan Chase bank and credit cards,” said Dr. Samuels. “The technology utilizes a tap-and-go system using radio frequency identification (RFID) microchips.”
Samuels said the University has analyzed several systems with Communication and Information Technology (CIT), as well as pricing to see which one would be a good fit for TSU.
Students, faculty and staff could also utilize a fingerprint access system with different access levels that have not yet been determined, Samuels added, saying that the system would be similar to what Middle Tennessee State University utilizes.
Campus police and Residence Life are also playing major roles in the development of the system.
Although the University has not identified a vendor to supply the new system, a request for proposals (RFP) has been sent out by TSU Procurement, according to Ron Brooks, Associate Vice President for Facilities Management.
“We are looking at HID Global, the supplier of the current FOB system, and other card suppliers,” Brooks said. “A new system that functions for ID, debit card, security access, and off-campus purchases may require minimal hardware changes thus reducing the overall cost of a new card system.”
Students and resident assistants are also excited about the prospect of a new multi-function ID card system.
“I believe it will make students more responsible with their IDs since they misplace them so frequently and are charged only $10 for replacement,” said Bianca Herron, a senior Communications major from Chicago, who is a resident assistant in Wilson Hall. “Putting the FOB, money and meal plan into one thing will make them notice and be more careful.”
Other schools around the country are using similar systems, Samuels said. MTSU uses a hand-scanning system for visitors after touring their facilities.
Officials hope to have the TSU system in operation by the beginning of the fall 2013 semester, according to Dr. Samuels.
Tennessee State University
3500 John A. Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
About Tennessee State University
With nearly 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university and is a comprehensive, urban, coeducational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 22 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top Universities in the county by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912 Tennessee State University celebrates 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu
TSU Quick Facts
Motto: Think, Work, Serve Established: June 19, 1912 Type: Public, HBCU Endowment: $41.7 million Chancellor: John Morgan President: Dr. Glenda Baskin Glover Faculty: 431 Enrollment: 8775 Location: Nashville, Tennessee, United States Campus: Urban, 500 acres (2 km²) Former names: Tennessee A&I State Normal School for Negroes (1912); Tennessee A&I State Normal College (1925); Tennessee A&I State University (1951); Tennessee State University (1968) Colors: Reflex Blue and White Nickname: Tigers Athletics: National Collegiate Athletic Association Affiliations: Ohio Valley Conference Web site: www.tnstate.edu Phone: 615-963-5000
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