35 New Polycoms Installed This Summer

This summer 35 Polycom VSX7000s units & carts & TVs were installed in many of my elementary and middle school buildings as part of a USDA RUS DLT grant. During most of the installation time I was travelling, so now I’ve come back to lots of work testing and training! We still have some networking issues to work out in many of the buildings, but the equipment is there and the excitement is rising! This grant is unusual in that most of the buildings know what it is and what they can do with it. They are very anxious to use it. Unlike some grants were technology is purchased and the districts don’t know why they need it. Of course there is still lots of training to do, but it’s exciting to see the interest and anticipation.

Last week I got a chance (finally) to run over to one of my buildings and get a picture of the cart put together.

Here’s the whole cart. I was happy to feel how easy it is to push around. Many of our buildings will be using it as a mobile cart. I’ve heard several comments from my buildings on how cool they think it looks.

The principal who took this picture for me said, “Only techies want a picture of the wires!” But I thought this mount was pretty cool for putting the Polycom above the TV.

And my favorite feature – only two cables to plug in! Easy for teachers to use! Network & power.

We are looking forward to a great year of videoconferencing!

Sept. 18 Update.

Thanks for the comment Danny! Here’s the answers – and I’m putting them here because others may have the same questions.

1. The cart is the VFI C2736-42-VSX (with the cutout for the Polycom VSX speaker). It’s very likely your reseller is familiar with the cart. Our installation was through AVI Systems, and their installation included putting the cart together and mounting the TV & Polycom.

2. Document camera. The RUS grant funding has to be staggered across the 3 years of the grant, so we are buying the peripherals for these units next year. Our plan is to get a small document camera that also converts computer inputs to SVideo. It will be kept on the shelf of the cart and have a long S-Video cable to bring out into the classroom for presentations.

Thanks for asking the questions!

About Janine Lim

Janine Lim, PhD, currently serves as associate dean for online higher education in the School of Distance Education at Andrews University, in Berrien Springs, MI. She and her team support over 200 online courses, provide training for faculty teaching online, and work with the campus infrastructure support of online learning. Her department also provides educational technology and Moodle support for faculty and students. In addition, Janine is responsible for the faculty and courses of the Consortium of Adventist Colleges and Universities. Janine has taught over 15 unique graduate educational technology classes online numerous times over the past 15 years, with some classes attracting participants from all over the world. Her undergraduate teaching includes social media courses for communication and digital media majors. Janine has served on the board of the United States Distance Learning Association since April 2015. Prior to her work at Andrews University, Janine coordinated distance education for 22 K12 school districts in southwest Michigan for 14 years. In that position, as one of the co-founders of TWICE, Michigan’s K12 Videoconferencing Organization, Janine has spearheaded popular international K12 videoconference projects such as Read Around the Planet and MysteryQuest. While still serving on the board of TWICE, she was instrumental in designing and implementing the CAPspace website for collaborative videoconference projects. Janine also served on a team of Michigan educational technology trainers providing a workshop called ATA Technology Academy. Her current online learning research interests include successful teacher behaviors, quality online discussions, and student activity patterns in self-paced courses.
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3 Responses to 35 New Polycoms Installed This Summer

  1. Danny Maas says:

    Hi Janine,
    Thanks for the photos – the visuals really help. Where did you get the cart? Was it easy enough to put together? I love the fact that one mobile VC unit can now travel to any classroom in a school where the learning takes place, as opposed to students leaving their classroom to go to a special VC room. With a mobile unit such as the one above, do you give up things like a document camera or a connection to a computer to share a presentation or other files?
    Danny Maas
    Edmonton, Alberta

  2. Judy Maxson says:

    My school district recently installed 86 Polycoms also, as the result of USDA grant funds. Please let me know if you’d like to link up sometime and (possibly) connect our schools.

    Judy Maxson

  3. Janine Lim says:

    Judy – great idea! I think the USDA grant ought to require connections between the grants…. Think of the possibilities – PD, projects, sharing implementation plans & results, etc. Let’s think about this more – what can we design that will benefit our schools?

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