Today@Sam Article

Donation Supports County Connectivity

June 6, 2023
SHSU Media Contact: Mikah Boyd

The networking department at Sam Houston State University recently donated 32 network switches to Walker County. The switches allow for two or more IT devices to communicate with each other, and the approximate value of the donation is $288,000, based on market prices at the time of purchase.T@S Image_Networking

The donation was arranged through collaboration between the county and the university and aligns with SHSU’s strategic priority to expand and elevate its services to the county, city, state and beyond.

According to the networking director for Technology Solutions and Support, Garrett Jeter, the university recently established a partnership thanks to longstanding connections with the county and Jeter’s personal relationship with newly elected county judge, Colt Christian.

“Judge Christian and I have been friends for several years. The combination of SHSU establishing strategic goals and priorities, the addition of new leadership for the county and with county IT reporting directly to the county judge, proved that now was the best time to build community relations with the county to provide any support we can,” Jeter said.

On top of providing the switches, the networking department will aid the county during the replacement cycle and the installations as needed. The switches will replace those used by the county, which a recent assessment revealed are old and outdated. Switches donated by the university have several years of utility left, allowing the county to connect devices within a network and enable them to efficiently communicate with one another.

“Since we are blessed at SHSU to have an excellent capital replacement program, we were able to take our “older” equipment that still has several years of support and security updates available and donate those to Walker County to standardize their networking hardware in a majority of county offices,” Jeter said. “This will allow my networking team, the county’s IT team, the county judge and myself to come up with equipment standardization and a replacement cycle for their equipment to ensure those devices get replaced and updated.”

As the collaborative project moves forward, Jeter and his team are happy to have the chance to serve their community in Walker County. Their efforts are a continuation of the IT networking team’s volunteer efforts, which aim to serve Bearkats and the city that they call home. IT@Sam assured that the donation of the switches and collaboration with the county will in no way affect their service to university faculty, staff and students. 

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