SGA, IT discuss Norse Express

In the coming months, students can expect to see Norse Express have a face-lift and a little nip and tuck.

Rich Shivener and Meredith Brennan both presented the new forth-coming system at the Student Government Association meeting Feb. 2.

Brennan and Schivener, both from the IT Prism Project, dubbed the new system ‘myNKU’ and said it is set to fully replace Norse Express by fall 2009.

During the presentation, Schivener said myNKU will be similar to Norse Express since students can still check their pay statements if they are a university employee, grade checks, financial aid summaries, schedules, etc.

‘This efficient system is redirecting and saving personnel hours,’ Shivener said.

Shivener also pointed out some examples of what can be done with myNKU:

Request placement in a class that is full. Currently, you must submit paperwork requesting consent from said faculty.

‘bull;View credit hours from another institution transferred to NKU.

‘bull;View financial aid information beginning Fall 2009 semester Feb. 23. (Subject to change).

Brennan also pointed out that security issues would be taken into account.

‘(IT) is doing away with having social security numbers as the primary identifier,’ she said.
MyNKU runs on software used by companies such as Pepsi Co. and Under Armor and institutions such as the University of Cincinnati and University of Kentucky, Shivener said during the presentation.

Brennan described myNKU as a ‘truly integrated system.’

‘One of the key things is making the student experience better,’ Brennan said, adding that it is trying to make it ‘as seamless as possible.’

A draft version of the new Norse Express can be seen at
Matt Hackett, director of Campus Recreation, also spoke to SGA on fiscal and programmatic challenges facing campus recreation.

The first area Hackett addressed was the recent increase in student participation.

He said that it’s currently at record levels, with approximately 4,000 students in programs last year.

However, Hackett said with the recent increase in participation comes an increase in operational costs.

There were increases in labor due to changes in minimum wages and increases in equipment repair and replacement for the over $500,000 worth of equipment that Campus Recreation currently owns.

Hackett also addressed the declining revenue.

He said the decline was due to overcrowding, aging facilities and equipment, and the general downturn in the economy.

At the end of his presentation, Hackett discussed nine reoccurring costs and needs myNKU to be met that equals to $506,000.
‘bull;Establish repair and replacement program for exercise equipment.
‘bull;Increase student employment.
‘bull;Maintain outdoor recreation and facilities and program equipment.
‘bull;Reduce dependence on generated revenue.
‘bull;Expand recreation center operating hours.
‘bull;Reduce student registration fees.
‘bull;Increase student program funding.
‘bull;Re-start personal training program.
‘bull;Permanent funding for Norse Nights and special events.

During its meeting, SGA also held the first reading of a resolution that would request an increase in the number of plants in the common areas inside the buildings on campus.

According to the resolution, ‘plants clean the air by filtering out known carcinogens and removing toxins such as benzene, ammonia and carbon monoxide.’
The resolution recommends the ‘continuation for NKU to be greener and brighten the campus by bringing more plants indoors, and to keep the college community healthy.’