Editorial – Busted, leaking pipes

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City College students have two basic needs: registering for classes and buying parking permits. But this fall the school failed its student body in satisfying both those needs.

In May, preparations were made to upgrade Pipeline before the start of the fall semester. Pipeline is the main online portal for nearly all school related activities. Nothing was done until early August.

When the upgrades were finally implemented, students and faculty noticed numerous problems with the system. Glitches included login problems, issues with registration, e-mails being sent to the wrong addresses, clubs losing vital information and various other mishaps.

Why did City College decide to upgrade Pipeline? It hadn’t been updated in nearly two and a half years, and students were noticing that the site did not feature a security lock on its Website.

Dan Watkins, Director of Information Technology, said that there has never been a security problem with Pipeline and that most users will not even notice a difference.

Then why in the world did the school decide to change a working system? If it worked last semester with no major errors, then changing the portal because of something cosmetic is absurd.

This upgrade caused the entire school countless problems. This has been a fiasco.

Adding to the trouble is the issue of ordering parking permits online. Some 50 students have not received the permits that they purchased over the internet. A number that security supervisor Erik Fricke speculates is much higher.

It turns out that a company in Illinois is in charge of shipping these permits to students and is charging a hefty shipping fee as well. Was there no local company that could have mailed out these stickers? Perhaps a business a little closer to the college, like say in the same state.

The Security staff is also notorious for handing out an abundance of parking tickets during school hours. This cannot possibly be assuring to students who have actually done the right thing by already purchasing permits online.

What was originally intended to save students time, has now become an issue at a school already consumed with problems.

These issues also come at the worst possible time, the start of fall semester. A time when City College is, by far, the busiest and this year enrollment is shockingly up by more than 10 percent. This means that there will be more students in classes, more students looking for parking, and more students requiring that their school does not fail them.

But maybe “securing” Pipeline will prove beneficial to users once they are acclimated to the new locking symbol, and perhaps the permit problem will solve itself. But even if these miracles are achieved, it doesn’t change the fact that this should have been taken care of it during the summer.

Between the spring and fall semesters, there were three long months that should have been used more efficiently.

City College is better than this. These issues gave us a rocky start to the fall semester, but this school will quickly bounce back and, once again, regain form.

On a positive note, no one will remember these problems once the school decides that another upgrade is necessary.