Travis Tasker is the Director of the Media Services & Engineering Department at Utah Valley University and has built the department from the ground up. This department specializes in the integration and support of classroom technology, as well as other campus-wide technology-based systems. Travis has been an integral part of UVU since 1998. His education is in Technology/Construction Management. He also has an emphasis in Electronics, Computers, and Spanish. He is 6 Sigma “Green Belt” certified and has many other industry certifications. Travis’ niche and goal on campus has been integrating systems and then supporting them for the life of the systems from the cost savings of not subcontracting out the installs. This practice has saved over 6 million dollars on new construction projects in the last 10 years. Excluding these savings, if MS&E updates 57 rooms or more a year as part of the 7-year replacement cycle, they save the school more than their employee costs including benefits. In 2013, MS&E implemented 71 classrooms systems. This makes all support, event staging, and other systems that MS&E integrates a value add to campus.
MS&E Mission Statement
Media Services and Engineering (MS&E) provides faculty, students, and staff with the highest quality of presentation technology, training, and support services to the Utah Valley University campus community. MS&E designs, implements, and supports technology solutions which aid in UVU’s mission to provide opportunity, promote student success, and meet regional educational needs by supporting and implementing classroom technology. These services make learning more accessible and enhance student’s engaged learning experiences.
MS&E Strategic Vision
Media Services and Engineering has steadily become a core campus resource for technology support and integration. Our staff is dedicated to customer service and a diligent work ethic. Our goal for the next four years is to augment our abilities to provide exceptional, professional, and quality technology support services. We will do this by focusing on our customers and the University’s goals, mission, and needs. In doing this, we plan to expand the technology capabilities while simplifying the customer experience of our classrooms. MS&E also plans to raise classroom dependability and take a more proactive approach to support by checking classrooms periodically and implanting additional equipment monitoring. We also plan to do this by pushing to implement a 7-year equipment life-cycle with a decommissioning process when funding is not in place for life-cycle replacement.
MS&E Current Responsibilities
MS&E had two main focuses, support and integration, which together help save money and create efficiencies. MS&E’s first aim has always been to support existing technologies and our second is to integrate new technology resources. MS&E has many duties and responsibilities but really we are here to serve by being industry informed and customer “true need” driven. Not only do we support the largest computer lab on campus with over 400 computers spread across every building, we also consult design and integrate many other audio visual and IT technology across campus. Some of the largest systems that we have designed integrated and currently support are:
1. Media Essential Classrooms (MEC’s) and conference rooms (around 500 together) across 4 different campuses and all UVU buildings. MS&E currently installs/refreshes 50-100 classrooms a year on a 7-year replacement cycle and then uses the expertise gained in installation to effectively support the systems.
2. Event Support and Staging (ESS) campus-wide including the Student Center (We currently are doing 1-24 setups and events each week campus-wide.)
3. Campus Digital Signage System (DSS) where we design and build a system using existing content pathways currently over 60 locations.
4. Campus Video Surveillance System (VSS) which is a robust camera system that will soon have over 600 cameras with footage stored for over a month.
5. Media Checkout where technology resources are made available to faculty, staff,, and students for presentations
6. Other Special Projects such as: Emergency Notifications, Campus Kiosks, IPTV, New Construction, lecture capture, Soft and codec video conferencing etc…
MS&E strives to provide the best service to campus by being on the cutting, but not the bleeding, edge. We try to adopt technologies when they are cost effective and the campus receives the most value possible. We innovate and come up with ways to save funds and make things work better and be more effective. We strive to collaborate and coordinate with other areas of campus and with other institutions. We strive to not waste time and to be as efficient as possible. We have worked for years to develop good relationships with the different areas of campus. We work hand in hand with Telephone Services, Help Desk, IT Infrastructure, Facilities Admin, Electricians, Painters, Library, Scheduling, General Academics, Student Center, SLW, Marketing, etc. We also work with external entities such as architects, contractors, engineers, etc. These relationships help us to do more with less and be more effective for campus. *We are currently working on relationships with the Event Center and CS areas.
MS&E currently works as a team, where each employee has an assigned area with a second employee that is cross-trained as the backup for that area. Each employee has ownership of their area but also works together with the team on every other area as needed. We have each position laid out in percentages of time that should be devoted to each assignment and as large projects come up in any of our areas, we adapt and work as a team to accomplish the needed output.
2014 New Student Life and Wellness Building, New Classroom Building
2013 Travis came up with department matching plan which enabled campus to do twice as many rooms that were funded during a year when the MS&E department funds were cut. MS&E ended up building out 71 classrooms with technology resources. Also was able to come up with a plan to save the University from having to build a second event staging and media support department to support the increasing events in the Student Center and the new Student Life and Wellness Buildings. Travis hopes to continue to build these areas and provide more consistency across campus.
2012 Completed large Science Building project on time and under budgets while integrating more rooms faster using lean manufacturing techniques.
2011 (72) classroom upgrade project
2010 (66) Room General Academic Upgrade, 3 Room Emergency Services Upgrade, alumni etc…
2009 Implemented Centralized campus-wide security camera system, LC upgrade, etc…
2008 Helped with the building, program and design of Audio, Video and Control for a new $40,000,000 Digital Learning Center. Designed and Implemented technology with campus resources.
2007 Pushed to get a campus-wide Digital Signage Network. UVU now has over 100 automated displays with 14 different areas providing content as well as RSS feeds and announcements from the campus calendar and website.
2006 Completed Business Building classroom upgrade project. Project was completed on time and under budget.
2005 Completed Education Building classroom upgrade project. Project was completed on time and under budget.
2004 Joined IT, separating from Studios and Engineering Department, forming the new Media Services and Engineering Department (MS&E.)
2003 Designed 64 fully automated touch-panel controlled classrooms with central control systems. Classrooms were designed to be supported centrally with limited personnel. Travis not only designed the systems but oversaw the project which included helping with the actual installation and programming. Project was completed on time and $720,000 under budget/ low bid (Which funds were then used to build up other building infrastructure.)
2002 Helped build State of the Art Broadcast Studio (Studio A) and student Studio (B)
2001 Helped Build New Communication Head End and redesigned campus cable system. Designed and programmed two Distance Education Origination Sites.
2000 Managed 23 Distance Education Sites and UEN/UVSC Fiber links in Utah County
*Note that only some of the largest projects for each year are listed.