Westcliff University Brings At-Home Students Into The Classroom With Stem
Established in 1993, Westcliff University’s core principle is to provide quality education for local and international students wishing to enter the expanding fields of business and education. With three campuses and four primary colleges, Westcliff University offers graduate and undergraduate certificates and degree programs intended to prepare students for immediate entry and advancement in sectors including Education, Technology & Engineering, Law, and Business. Westcliff University offers full-time working students a chance to enroll in 100% online courses or take courses onsite at its campuses in beautiful Southern California.
As COVID-19 restrictions lifted and students and faculty were beginning to return to campus for hybrid classroom learning, the Westcliff University IT team quickly realized that the existing AV systems they were using would not be able to support hybrid work or learning models for the upcoming school year. “With the previous AV systems, we kind of piecemealed everything together with a webcam and conference speaker, which didn’t necessarily work in our larger classrooms. You couldn’t truly hear what a student in the back of the room was saying,” explained Dominic Enriquez, Director of Strategic Initiatives at Westcliff.
The inadequate AV system created significant learning disruptions where lecturers needed to take the time to repeat everything said during class activities or at-home students would miss important information, creating a disconnect for both in-person and online students. The university urgently needed a scalable AV solution that their in-house team could deploy in a variety of classrooms and conference spaces in time for the upcoming school year.
Specific challenges included:
- A variety of different meeting spaces with different needs
- Installation timeframe
- Large scale deployment
- Multiple campus locations
With each campus containing a variety of environments, from conference rooms to courtrooms and classrooms, each space needed different audio devices so students and faculty would have a seamless hybrid learning experience. Dominic and the team at Westcliff were able to hit the ground running by designing each room and deciding on a customized combination of devices that would perfectly meet the needs of each and every room with the RoomDesign tool. “So, when we met with Stem, we used the RoomDesign tool on the website and we were able to design each room exactly how we wanted,” explained Dominic.
Once the designs were in place with the selected Stem devices, the Westcliff team was able to order directly from Stem and get their devices shipped to each campus for installation. “The installation process was extremely easy. Our shipment was sent directly to us, it was a complete install directly out of the box, we just mounted the Stem devices on the wall, put them on the tables, and once we logged on to the Ecosystem platform, we were able to link all of the devices to our network, create a room, and drop all of the devices into that room so they worked seamlessly together.”
By upgrading their audio to the Stem Ecosystem, teachers, students, and staff are now able to connect as if they were all in the room together. “It’s allowed the faculty to feel like the students joining from home were right in the classroom.”
The ecosystem’s flexibility in using different device mixes to adjust to each room’s unique audio requirements and the ease of use made it an ideal solution for the challenges brought by hybrid-style learning environments. “It fits our audio needs for the different size classrooms, it was plug and play, easy to use, and an ecosystem that eliminated noise conflicts within a space.”
The scalability of the ecosystem also provided the university with a single, easy-to-use solution for the whole organization. With the new ecosystem in place, teachers were free to resume their natural teaching styles and movement around the classroom. “We are extremely satisfied with Stem. The customer service has been exceptional, and the system works phenomenally,” said Dominic. “Currently, we have the Stem Ecosystem in 26 rooms spread over a few campuses, and there’s more to come.”
Listen to Dominic tell the story to find out how the Stem Ecosystem gave Westcliff the tools they needed to bring students both at home and abroad into the classroom:
|Stem Control||1||Control provides complete access to the Stem platform along with seamless integrations with your favorite video conferencing platforms for touch-to-join meetings.|
|Stem Ceiling||11||Stem Ceiling focuses on who’s speaking and allows you to focus on your meeting all while keeping the technology out of sight.|
|Stem Hub||14||Hub connects multiple Stem devices through your network and acts as the central communication device for the audio in a room. Hub comes with multiple connectivity options including USB Type B, Dante® (Hub only), SIP, and external analog speakers.|
|Stem Speaker||4||Stem Speaker gives you the freedom to expand sound anywhere in the room while giving you three different mounting options to choose from so you can flex your tech or keep it incognito in any environment|
|Stem Wall||23||With 15 beamforming microphones plus two full-range speakers and subwoofers, the Stem Wall can be wall mounted in any room so everyone in your meetings can hear and be heard.|
|Stem Table||5||With nine built-in beamforming microphones and an innovative downward-facing speaker, Stem Table takes the quality of your meetings to the next level|