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IT staff gather to talk trends

Statewide IT conference offers professional development for IT community

News and events May 3, 2024

With an overall theme of Innovate, Adapt, Defend, the 2024 Statewide IT Conference offered nearly 900 Indiana University IT staff the chance to explore the role of AI, talk about recent successes and upcoming projects, and discuss ways to protect against cyberthreats.

The 28th annual conference took place April 23–24, 2024 with workshops and training on April 22. The conference brings together tech staff members and IT thought leaders from all nine campuses who meet to exchange information about the latest in technology, university initiatives, and developments in the field.

Rob Lowden, vice president for information technology and chief information officer, opened the conference addressing the attendees in Alumni Hall and thanked the conference sponsors, including Pier Group who have been a long-time title sponsor of the conference.

“I am so thankful for everyone who helped make this year’s conference what it is,” Lowden said. “This continues to be one of the highlights of my year and I look forward to having many more with my IT colleagues.”

The conference featured over 890 attendees, 19 preconference sessions, and 62 breakout sessions. Session topics included “Data and Analytics, you can’t improve what you don’t measure,” “ChatGPT and other AI tools and informatics education,” and “Copilot for Microsoft 365 and Indiana University.

The keynote presentation was led by leading cybersecurity expert Dr. Jessica Barker, who spoke on the role of AI in cybercrime. Barker, who focuses on the human side of AI and cybersecurity, discussed the ways bad actors use social engineering and ever evolving technology to scam people out of their money and some best practices to ensure you can identify those scams.

Additionally, this year’s event featured an AI Lightning Round Panel, where participants learned how various people across IU—from professors to graduate to undergraduate students—are using AI.

As the conference drew to a close, the IT Leadership Community announced the recipients of its awards:

  • Promise of the Future award: Sarah Thompson
  • Spirit of Leadership award: Randy Newbrough
  • Champion of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion award: Stefano Fiorini and Caitlin Malone
  • IT Leadership Team Collaboration award: Learning Spaces and Technology Services
  • Champion of Leadership award: Renee Petrina

The conference concluded with closing remarks from Lowden, who highlighted some future projects UITS will be tackling, such as Universal Print where IU students will be able to print anywhere on any IU campus for free and a university-wide Digital ID system which will eventually replace the current physical CrimsonCard system.

Lowden also mentions UITS’ current projects such as the Digital Strategy Initiative, an extensive effort to update IU’s web presence and improve the university’s search engine optimization, and the One Mail Project, which aims to unify all 10 of IU’s email domains to the iu.edu domain.

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