Y2K Hype

[Lead article in the Winter Quarter, 2000 Issue
of the ITS Newsletter]

What hype?  You must have heard it, seen it, or read about it last year, because there was a lot of hype.  But make no mistake, it was not all hype.

Thanks to the efforts of many people all across campus, we have had a smooth and pretty much uneventful rollover into 2000.  The Year 2000 project at Andrews University began formally in June 1998, when President Andreasen set up a Y2K Task Force.  This group met biweekly for 18 months, and developed and executed the plan that gave us this smooth transition.

Our plan of attack had two major thrusts: achieve compliance, and be prepared for eventualities beyond our control.  As with any serious potential crisis that does not eventuate, some people ask if too much time, effort and expense was spent needlessly.  However, most people are grateful that those carefully made plans were not called upon, and thankful that we are now better prepared should we be struck by another winter blizzard like the one in 1999, or some other disaster.  Employees in Plant Services, Loss Control, University Relations and many other departments are to be commended for the good work that went into preparing the contingency plans and other measures that are now in place.

Achieving Y2K compliance was a task that absorbed many thousands of person hours over the last 18 months.  The project had 5 phases: Awareness, Assessment, Renovation, Validation, and Implementation (visit the Y2K web site at http://www.andrews.edu/ITS/Y2K/index.htm for further details).

In the Assessment Phase, data was collected from all over campus on computer hardware, non-computer hardware with embedded chips, computer software, and external entities such as utilities, vendors, and financial institutions.  Through a campus-wide team effort, this data was collected and entered into our Y2K monitoring database on the web.  I want to thank all those who contributed in any way to making Andrews University ready for Y2K. 

I especially want to thank the staff in the Administrative Systems, Client Services, Servers and Networks, and Telecommunications groups in ITS for the thoroughness of their work in achieving compliance.  For some of them, this has had a major impact on their work load, and they are now looking forward to moving on to other new and exciting projects.  I would also like to thank the members of the Y2K Task Force for the time they gave, and for the expertise and wisdom they brought to the Y2K effort at Andrews.  And finally, I would like to thank our “Y2K Czar”, Bill Wolfer, for the enthusiasm, energy and good cheer he brought to this project.

So now, I wish you all a good Year 2000.  But continue to be alert for hiccups (and viruses – for instance, if you get a message called “Internet problem year 2000.” from Administrator [admin_@andrews.edu], just delete it)

David Heise