Last week the Google Apps for Education team headed to Denver for EDUCAUSE 2009 where the higher education community meets annually. It was at this conference three years ago that we first unveiled Google Apps for Education. Since then, we've witnessed staggering growth in the world of cloud computing in education. Lots has happened over the past year especially: more than 100 new features have rolled out in Google Apps, we've engaged well over six million students and faculty (a 400% increase since this time last year), launched free Google Message Security for K-12 schools and have integrated with other learning services such as Blackboard and Moodle.
These developments are just the beginning. According to the newly-released 2009 Campus Computing survey statistics, 44% of colleges and universities have converted to a hosted student email solution, while another 37% are currently evaluating the move. Of those that have migrated, over half — 56% precisely — are going Google.
To toast the students and faculty that are shaping this movement, we hosted our customers and EDUCAUSE conference attendees at the Denver Public Library. Check out the photos to see what these schools have to say:
We also did something different this year and invited some student ambassadors from schools using Google Apps to come to Denver and share how using Apps on campus helps make their lives easier. Daniel Miller who works at University of Washington's Ethnic Cultural Center uses Calendar to let students on campus know about his organization's events. Sociology major Robin Brown uses forms in Docs to collect data for her class surveys at Notre Dame. Taylor Bell at Boise State relies on Gmail's filters and gadgets to seamlessly access to his Calendar, Docs, Tasks and Chat. After losing his journal, Vaughn Parker at Temple University created a Calendar to keep track of his assignments and share them with his classmates and professors. (There are many more of these student stories, too).
Every year, more schools move to Google Apps so they can spend their time focusing on students, not servers; on higher learning, not higher costs. If you're a school, you can go Google, too. Check out www.google.com/appsatschool to learn more.