I sat down with Nicole Zimmerman, the Chair of Senate’s Student Services Committee, to discuss the WSU app that her committee proposed to Senate last semester. Here is what I learned:
How did the idea of a WSU app come about?
From Jake Watson, (he works for a company that develops applications for
universities across the nation) he came to Senate and presented about it. He is from
a company who makes apps. After a lot of discussions with students, Senate and my
committee, we decided that this was something Winona State should pursue.
What was passed in Senate regarding this app?
It was our committee recommendation to Senate that we wanted President Olson
and his cabinet to explore the logistics and avenues behind getting such an app. I’ve
talked to probably 200 students, especially at ASO meeting (a mandatory meeting
for leaders of clubs), and I’ve gotten tons of positive feedback about going ahead
with this app.
What is the hope behind this app?
The hope is that it will be a place that student clubs and organizations can post
meeting times and events. And also, for students to potentially have their own
schedule on the app, so they drag events over to their schedule.
The exact details of the app would be under the discretion of the third party and the
university. We, as a committee, didn’t want to add too much to the app’s description
when they handed it off to Kenneth Janz, the Associate President of Academic
Affairs/CIO, because we didn’t want to limit the ideas of what the app can be.
When will WSU Students be seeing this app?
I think it would be best if it would already be out in the Fall 2016 semester, so it
could be coming on the iPads for the incoming students. That would give them (our
university) this spring to get the ball rolling and then the summer to get it up and
Do you have an idea for a name for the app?
Haha—No, that’s not my job! I just called it something simple in committee, but
maybe it could be something clever, I don’t know.
Anything more you’d like to say about the future app?
This won’t be a free-for-all “social” app for WSU students; it needs to have an
education aspect to it. Although, Student Services, along with Student Senate, hopes
the app becomes a positive resource for WSU students.
After sitting down with Nicole I was excited to hear about this future app WSU
students will be able to utilize. It seems like Nicole has a hope that what ever the
details are for this app, it will have the capacity to connect student organizations
and clubs. Personally, being involved in five clubs and organizations on campus, I
would love a convenient and easy way to connect with other clubs. We have an
active club life on our campus and I see the benefit of having a place to look through
all the clubs meeting times, and upcoming events. Although, that seems to be only
the minimal functions behind what Student Senate hopes to see this app do.
Future Hopes for App:
- On all WSU iPads
- Utilized by all WSU clubs and organizations
- Easy and convenient way for students to stay informed
The motion for this app was passed in Senate; however, the financial logistics
behind this app is still in the works. The hope is that this app will be made and
available for students in the near future.
Aly is senior double majoring in Public Relations and Political Science. Her hope is to graduate this spring with a job… any job, but preferably one in the communications field that allows her to apply her passion for government, law, and politics. Aly is a travel junkie and has traveled to 15 countries, but believes that number is too low and is already saving for her next adventure!