Tag Archives: huskycard

IT Update – New Students

Michigan Tech IT is looking forward to the start of the fall semester and all the new students who begin to arrive on August 23. Below are some helpful things to know before you get to campus.

  • Michigan Tech has negotiated many software packages for students to install and use on their personal computers at no cost while at Michigan Tech. Software availability varies by major but includes: AutoCAD, EndNote, Matlab, Mathematica, Microsoft Office 365 ProPlus, Microsoft DreamSpark, Microsoft Security Essentials, and more. Most of the contracts require that you be an active current student to download and install, so software will be available once the fall semester begins. Visit the software download center at: http://downloads.it.mtu.edu.
  • If you haven’t already done so, make your New Student Orientation weekend a little easier by uploading a photo for your Michigan Tech HuskyCard ID. You can do this by logging in at mymichigantech.mtu.edu and following the HuskyCard photo item instructions. Students without a photo uploaded will need to have their photo taken on campus and wait for their card to print; students who upload their photo in advance will have their pre-printed card waiting for them at HuskyCard pickup.
  • Wireless routers are not allowed in the residence halls. Save yourself time and money by not buying a wireless router. If a student has a wireless router that we detect, we will ask the student to remove the router to reduce interference with our existing wireless network.
  • Over the summer, Michigan Tech IT hired a consulting firm to evaluate wireless connectivity throughout campus. Based on their report and feedback from residence hall students, we are in the process of deploying and activating nearly 700 new access points in the residence halls, which results in roughly one access point in every other room. This project will provide exceptional wireless coverage throughout the halls. This project will not be complete before move in weekend. It will be a continuous process until all access point are active. We appreciate your patience and cooperation as we finish this important project.
  • Printing is available throughout campus and the residence halls. Find out where printers are available on our web site at http://www.it.mtu.edu/printing/. Information on printing in the residence halls is at http://www.it.mtu.edu/res-print/.
  • Finally, Michigan Tech IT is available to help you with any IT issues you experience as you begin the new year. Please contact us at it-help@mtu.edu or (906) 487-1111.

Campus Card Reader Replacement

New contactless card readers are now beginning to appear across campus.  The old system, which used magnetic stripe cards, is being decommissioned.  It has been a long, complex process to engineer the replacement system, which included the selection of a contactless secure credential and working with multiple vendors.  Information Technology and the Van Pelt and Opie Library worked together to distribute over 8,000 new Michigan Tech HuskyCards to students, faculty and staff this September.

In addition to providing building and room access, the new cards are being used for meals in the residence halls, membership verification at the SDC, Experience Tech hockey game entry, and in other creative ways.  Now that the new ID cards have been issued, we have begun replacing existing readers.  If you encounter a new card reader, just tap and go.  In the meantime, the older readers that are being phased out will read the gold magnetic stripe on new HuskyCards.

ITSS already has numerous requests for new locations to be added, and we are working diligently to complete those requests.  There are approximately 400 existing card readers that need to be replaced, many of which need immediate attention due to equipment failure.  Please contact Information Technology by calling 906-487-1111 or emailing it-help@mtu.edu to report any problems, request new locations, or inquire about a card reader application for a special or unique purpose.

HuskyCard is Coming

Michigan Tech IT is upgrading the campus card system by transitioning to a contactless smart card and reader system. The new system will be compatible with all of the current card functions such as student, faculty, and staff ID card, library card and meal plans. In addition to providing identification and access, the HuskyCard may optionally be used as a prepaid debit MasterCard, providing students the ability to receive same-day refunds.

The HuskyCard will have two magnetic stripes, one yellow, and one black, as well as a contactless smart chip. Information will be stored on both the yellow stripe as well as the smart chip to allow for a transition to new technology without interrupting current service offerings. When a contactless smart chip reader is installed, card users will be able to “tap” (hold the card very close to the reader) their card against the reader to execute transactions. If you encounter a magnetic stripe reader, swipe the yellow stripe.

The goal is to replace all swipe readers with contactless smart chip readers; including parking gates and computer lab print release systems. Parts of the current system are running on antiquated technology and need to be replaced as soon as possible. Other parts have been updated over the years and will remain compatible with the new system.

All Michigan Tech students, faculty, and staff will be required to receive a new HuskyCard with the contactless smart chip technology. You can exchange your current ID in the library from Aug. 26 until Sept. 15. Save time by updating your picture and preferred name at HuskyCard Photo Upload.

Note that all HuskyCards now have a 16-digit MasterCard number on the front of the card, as well as a black magnetic stripe. The black stripe should only be used for debit MasterCard transactions. The 16-digit number is associated with an optional prepaid debit account, and is only activated if one chooses to “register” their HuskyCard. As a result, new precautions must be taken by campus departments that use the HuskyCard. For example, the temporary holding of another person’s card in all cases is no longer appropriate, and new business processes must be put in place. The HuskyCard should be treated as if it were a personal credit card.

More information about the new HuskyCard is available at HuskyCard.

For questions about the proper handling of HuskyCards, please contact it-help@mtu.edu.