Dazed N. Confused
If inactive email accounts could generate virtual spider webs, George Brown College (GBC) would have a simulated an infestation problem.
Will W. Webb, a hospitality student went a full three years without knowing his school email account ever existed. “I figured Blackboard was good enough to get [the class] information.” Webb is a dedicated student who is far from being technologically advanced. “I managed to get my assignments in on time and my friends would fill me in on the days I missed.”
At GBC, each student automatically has an email similar to their name, followed by @georgebrown.ca, close to the email address that professors use. There is even a tab at the top of the login screen displaying the reported issues Microsoft Exchange has been facing.
Webb isn’t alone when it comes to not being up to date on the email system.
A former student who wished to remain anonymous to avoid embarrassment said, “I hadn’t found out about the email system until graduation day. I remember talking to one of my professors right before the ceremony and he was disappointed I had never replied to his emails.”
It was never his intention to ignore any form of communication with his professor. “I managed to pass all of my classes and ended up on the Dean’s list for all semesters without logging into my email.”
A study conducted by first year general arts and science students taking introduction to research course found that 80 per cent students in their final year at GBC have never attempted to log in to their email.
If a student were to log in to their GBC email account today, they would have endless amounts of monthly newsletters and potentially one or two emails announcing a missed deadline.
Through STU-View, George Brown’s on-line student information system, students can change their email preferences to give professors an option to send emails to a more convenient address or to forward emails directly to a personal address.
“I was in complete disbelief when I found out about the email account.” Webb remembers when he gained knowledge of his email, “I was using my AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) email account since grade school, if I would have known this earlier, I would have saved myself a lot of embarrassment.”
GBC email offers 100MB of storage capacity and allows Microsoft Exchange calendar functions to help students stay on task.
George Brown’s website, under technical support for student email states, “Using your George Brown email account is a great warm-up for the system you’re likely to use when you leave the college to enter the workforce, since the vast majority of organizations use Microsoft Exchange to help their employees communicate.”
After speaking with students who only recently found their ways into their email account, a majority of students believe, “[We] have no idea how we functioned without the [George Brown College] email.”
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