VoIP Supply Improves College Campus Connectivity

April 21, 2008 by Garrett Smith

VoIP Supply outfits Alderson-Broaddus College with a 200+ seat PBX phone system.

Located in West Virginia, Alderson-Broaddus, the 635-student college founded over 100 years ago, purchased analog gateways as well as a 200+ seat PBX phone system to connect the dorms and buildings, mostly for emergencies.

The new system will make it easier for the university community to communicate and keep expanding its methods to keep staff and students safe.

Bruce Blankenship, vice president for assessment, planning and technology at the college said they moved to VoIP for a number of reasons, including cost, changing technology and flexibility in services.

“We saw a potential cost savings,” Blankenship said. “We were facing an upgrade from analog, which would be much more expensive. Our copper network is also beyond capacity in terms of adding new users, so we wanted to try and put our resources into a new IP network, as our current fiber loop has been around 40 to 50 years.”

Blankenship marked the importance of what happened at nearby Virginia Tech and the importance of disaster response planning.

“VoIP supports better communications with the constituents on campus,” he said. “Currently we provide one phone per student suite, with four to eight students sharing each for emergency and local calls. We don’t provide the phones, just a jack, and down the road we are thinking of possibly offering more VoIP services for each student.”

For the 150 faculty and staff on campus, plus the student community, VoIP Supply provided the right solution at the right price. Blankenship talked with VoIP Supply and VoIP Supply partner, Digium (then known as Switchvox), in order to come up with the best possible solution for college’s needs.

“I’m glad to have had our Switchvox SMB IP PBX be selected to play a part in improving communications at Alderson-Broaddus College,” said Tristan Degenhardt, Switchvox Product Line Director for Digium. “The stability and flexibility of the solution will allow them to deploy a system that not only serves their needs in the case of an emergency, but the extensive feature set will provide far-reaching benefits in their organization on a daily basis.”

Blankenship believes in the power of VoIP for the future of the school’s needs.

“We really think VoIP will serve us better than our current service,” Blankenship said. “The faculty and staff is looking forward to more features on their phones like caller id and integrating the VoIP system with the email and calendaring system. It’s an emerging field, and the staff wants to take full advantage of the features.”

Benjamin P. Sayers, VoIP Supply CEO, said that selling VoIP as a proactive tool of protection allows the company share in the sale of social responsibility.

“We get different kinds of orders every day, but knowing that we could be helping alleviate the response time in emergencies makes the job all the more worthwhile. We are proud to take on Alderson-Broaddus College as a client.”

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