By Richard Stone
Adobe has given students in the visual arts and communication design programs free, at-home, cloud access to its software until May 31.
The cloud access started on March 25, Usha Venkat, office of technology services director, said April 8.
The students were without access on March 23 and 24, Venkat said.
When we didn’t have Adobe access, our students practiced their digital photography with their cellphones and cameras, and they uploaded their photos to Canvas, Rebecca Dietz, visual arts program coordinator, said.
The change to remote working and learning has called for a willingness to adapt.
“We really have to think creatively and quickly. I’m finding that the remote classroom with the studio environment is very engaging,” Dietz said.
During the week of March 23 our classes were adjusting to using Zoom, so the lack of Adobe access didn’t affect us, Joel Knocke, communication design program coordinator, said.
As of this week, all students have Adobe access, Knocke said April 9.
The faculty members are impressed with how well remote learning has worked.
“I think that they’ve (office of technology services) done a good job at dealing with something we never thought we would experience,” Dietz said.
“It’s kind of a strange situation to be teaching online, but it’s working out better than I thought it would,” Knocke said.
It is important to take security in Zoom meetings seriously.
“I heard there is a phenomenon called ‘Zoom bombing’,” Venkat said.
“Zoom bombing” is when hackers break into and disrupt Zoom meetings.
Venkat said she is not aware of any specific complaints regarding “Zoom bombing” at Alamo Colleges.
Venkat said some security tips for Zoom meetings include enabling passwords and waiting rooms for new participants, being aware of who is in the meeting, asking everyone in the meeting to use their camera, disabling screen sharing, recording meetings and being cautious about suspicious links people send.
Venkat said the office of technology services has a team which is distributing laptops, with contactless delivery options, to students in need.
Click here to fill out a laptop request form.
Venkat said this situation is an opportunity for her department to learn about remote learning and working.
For more information, email Venkat at firstname.lastname@example.org or call OTS at 210-486-0030.