New Technologies Bring New Looks (and Some Nostalgia)

April 1, 2013

This week we commence a second year of the Wellesley College website being on the open-source Drupal platform, and we can look back at a year of Daily Shots—each day’s new cover photo highlighting news, events, happenings, and people from Wellesley. Meanwhile, this snapshot of the Wellesley website homepage (which ran as pictured here from November 1998 to June 2001) can take you, with a sigh, right back to the turn of the century.

Last year's platform change, and the accompanying website adjustments, have made site navigation and search more efficient and the look and feel more consistent. More importantly, there are considerable resource savings in the use of Drupal, a mature yet continually developing content management system that carries no licensing fees. On the tech side, the College is using about a third of the staff time to support it compared to the previous website tool, and those folks are managing three environments, as opposed to the 11 or 12 servers in use before the move. And, to paraphrase a well-known ad campaign, the savings of giving people a tool they like to use: priceless.

Other efficiencies of the technological sort have come into play at the College as well over the past year. 

With the currently admitted Class of 2017, the admissions review process became entirely paperless. Rather than all admission readers being holed up in the Admission Office at Weaver House, with a file “checked out,” the application materials were all in a system called NolijWeb, with a secure online notecard for note-taking about the candidate. Faculty and staff readers could thus work remotely—a great boon, especially in a season of blizzards.

These are just some of the more visible developments in improving the technological processes of the College, and we take the opportunity of the refreshed website’s anniversary to congratulate Library and Technology Services and all of its partner departments on these projects. No fooling—despite the date.