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WVSOM chooses Oracle Cloud for security, to lower costs

One may not associate advanced technology with the rolling hills and rural environment of southern West Virginia, but for a medical school that sits nestled among those hills technology plays an important role in educating future physicians.  

That is why the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (WVSOM) made the decision to switch to the Oracle Platform and Infrastructure Services in the Cloud in order to beef up security and substantially lower costs.

“It’s really important for our students that we have this advanced technology because we are now in a generation that has grown up with phones and computers since grade school,” said Kim Ransom, WVSOM’s director of information technology. “There are certain expectations of having technology that is modern and current, and to be part of the cutting edge. In the medical profession you don’t want to be technologically behind the curve.”

Oracle is the underlying database that the recently rolled out Banner 9, also referred to as Banner XE, sits on, according to Ransom. That database is used in higher education institutions for registration, financial aid, finance and human resources departments. Moving to a cloud-based system means WVSOM’s information technology department could also eliminate physical servers, relying now on a complete virtual environment.

Ransom said WVSOM was the first higher education institution in North America to make a complete transition to Oracle Cloud. The decision to make the switch began a little more than a year ago, with work beginning in July 2017 and culminating on May 30.

Oracle, a worldwide multinational technology corporation with headquarters in California, not only provided services at about one third of the cost of other companies, but they offered added security.

“Oracle is a solid industry leader and offered a very secure platform with the encryption of the data in transit and at rest. From a technical aspect that’s very important,” Ransom said.

She said the medical school is privileged to have the support from administrators to fund these projects.

“We’ve been fortunate, not just on this project but projects in the last eight years. Technology is not cheap. It can be expensive for the latest and greatest and most robust,” she said.

Larry Ware, WVSOM’s vice president for finance and facilities, said it’s important for WVSOM to stay ahead of the technology curve.

“To remain one of the top medical schools in the country, WVSOM must use its resources strategically,” he said. “Cost-effective investment in technology assists us in meeting our mission.”

Date Added: 
Tuesday, August 28, 2018