Open forum Feb. 27 will discuss switch in central e-mail service for faculty, staff

All members of the campus community are invited to a Feb. 27 forum on the initiative to introduce Microsoft and Google offerings as UC Davis' central e-mail and unified communications services for faculty and staff.

The transition, which is scheduled in phases starting in March, is the product of an extensive study conducted by a committee jointly appointed last year by Professor Robert Powell, in his role then as chair of the Academic Senate, and Peter M. Siegel, the campus's chief information officer.

The project will move central e-mail services for faculty and staff from Geckomail to one of two new campus-provided services: uConnect Microsoft Exchange or DavisMail Google Apps. Each option includes shared calendaring and other features.

Departments will choose the service that best meets the needs of their faculty, graduate students and staff. Many administrative departments already use uConnect, and some units that run their own e-mail services are already planning to retire them and make the transition to DavisMail or uConnect. Undergraduate students will continue to use DavisMail.

The transition is expected to conclude in late December, at which time Information and Educational Technology will initiate the project to retire Geckomail.

The forum is co-sponsored by the Campus Council for Information Technology and the Academic Senate Committee for Information Technology.

Forum leaders and project members will present the general transition approach and timeline, answer questions, share information sources available to the community, and seek feedback on the implementation approach.

The project team expects minimal disruption to e-mail, and will provide support and training before, during and after the transition.

Additional forums may be scheduled depending on demand; the team also welcomes the opportunity to speak with individual departments, college groups or other units.

The forum is scheduled from 3:10-4:30 p.m. in 1065 Kemper Hall. RSVPs are not needed.

Questions about the forum or the transition to Microsoft and Google services should be directed to project manager Gabe Youtsey at gdyoutsey@ucdavis.edu.