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Morgan State University Enhances Student Life with Wi-Fi 6

What do students want more than anything else on a college campus? Highspeed, low-latency connectivity.
Feb 22, 2022

What do students want more than anything else on a college campus?

Is it to learn classical logic from the works of Aristotle and Plato? Not exactly…

Is it to make lifelong friends and reach their career goals? Definitely closer to the truth…

But the real answer is connectivity. Highspeed, low-latency connectivity.

Today’s students want to check social wherever they are on campus, livestream the game from the stadium, and video chat in their dorm rooms. It does not matter how outstanding the academics, if a college cannot provide connectivity, they lose the competitive edge.

Morgan State University (MSU), a high research college situated in Baltimore, factored admissions when they made the decision to upgrade their network. With a student body of 7,700, the public, historically black school competes with neighboring State schools for students seeking academic rigor. Intent on maximizing their operational excellence and increasing overall institutional capacity, MSU made campus-wide infrastructure a priority.

Over the past 5 years, MSU has steadily replaced their network with Alcatel Lucent’s line of OmniAccess wireless access points. Singled out by Gartner for their best-of-breed stability and performance, the Omni series dynamically adapts and prioritizes bandwidth for optimal connectivity.

The latest phase of the network upgrade included the deployment of Wi-Fi 6 at the Earl G. Graves School of Business and Management. The specs of Omni AP555 access point are eye-watering. Each AP can service up to 2,048 clients with speeds of up to 5Gbs. Whereas legacy systems must split the bandwidth between each client, with Wi-Fi 6, density has much less impact on bandwidth.

A networking upgrade this extensive required the migration of the legacy system to the new network architecture. Jeff Wirtz, DES network engineer, sifted through 4,000 lines of code to ensure a flawless migration from Wi-Fi 5 to Wi-Fi 6. DES further ensured cost-savings with the mobility master that halves the licensing registration for all 2,050 access points.

Along with Magothy Technology, our Strategic Partner who handles Network Infrastructure and is the Primary Contractor at Morgan State, DES has serviced MSU’s voice and wireless network since 2016. As MSU embarks on their 2030 strategic plan, further upgrades are imminently planned, with three more campus buildings scheduled for Spring 2022.

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