By Anna T. McFadden, Director of the Coulter Faculty Center (CFC)

Collaboration for faculty and staff at WCU no longer has to occur face to face. Meeting with colleagues across the UNC system, the nation and the world is now possible virtually with Wimba MEETING. You can now have a room in cyberspace where you can see, hear and talk with anyone in the world who has a computer with an Internet connection, a webcam and a microphone.

Just like the WebCat Wimba Classroom tool, Wimba MEETING has the capability to share Adobe PDF documents, PowerPoint presentations, web pages, images and even your desktop applications. Everyone with WCU credentials will have his/her own room and inviting someone to a meeting is as simple as sending an e-mail. Perhaps best of all, Wimba MEETING functions outside the WebCat Learning Management System (LMS), so all members of WCU’s administration and staff can take advantage of this “virtual travel” during these austere budget times.

Stan Hammer, assistant CIO and director of data management and applications, was one of the first staff members to use Wimba MEETING with the payroll project, a project that involves the IT and administration and finance divisions. “Wimba MEETING has been critical for the payroll project. We needed minimal training and have used it almost daily with great results,” said Hammer. He also noted that during the last snow, a critical team member, Patti Johnson, was unable to get to campus to meet with a representative from General Administration. The solution was Wimba MEETING, and the work continued. “Wimba MEETING has allowed us to avoid travel and to have better collaboration at the drop of a hat,” said Hammer.

Wimba MEETING is one of the many ways that WCU keeps reshaping the boundary between technology, academics and administration to maximize efficiency and the learning experience. If you want to learn more about Wimba MEETING you can sign up for one of the Coulter Faculty Center’s workshops, coordinate with the office hours of one of our knowledgeable staff or just give us a call at extension 2930.