IBM (NYSE: IBM) and the Czech University of Life Sciences Prague (CULS) have developed new mobile apps that will enhance the campus experience by empowering students to better manage personal finances and providing access to campus services — from cafeteria menus to upcoming lectures.
CULS is the third largest university in Prague with more than 25,000 international students. With millennials increasingly incorporatingmobile devices into nearly every aspect of their lives, the University viewed mobile as a valuable opportunity to engage around everyday campus activities, and evolve it to a primary communications channel between teachers, administrators and students.
CULS selected the IBM MobileFirst Platform to develop and deploy the “My CZU” platform and initial apps in just three months. These apps were developed by a team of millennial developers from IBM who designed for specific student habits and user expectations.
“We have a large, diverse student population, and mobile is the best, most efficient channel to communicate directly with our international students and staff,” said Petr Dvorak, CIO, Czech University of Life Sciences Prague. “The collaboration with IBM enabled us to quickly execute on our mobile strategy and create a rewarding user experience, while also developing a longer term plan that will map to the evolving communications needs of our students.”
Currently, My CZU apps help students have greater control over their budgets and spending, and provide access to food services information such as viewing menus from various campus cafeterias and snack bars. The CULS financial app enables students to receive notifications about low cash balances on their campus debit card, view a list of transactions, set spending limits and compare spending to the University average. Students can also lock their account from their smartphone if their card is lost or stolen.
“Universities around the world are looking to technologies like mobile and social to transform how they interact with students and provide access to new services, like distance learning, that improve the experience of and outcomes for their students,” said Michael King, vice president, Global Education Industry at IBM. “Mobile in particular can create a rewarding user experience and provide students with instant access to the campus resources and services they rely on most.”
Future apps on the My CZU platform will include access to the CULS course catalog, campus maps and details on upcoming lectures and events, as well as connection to social media.