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St. John's Prep Turns Campus into Wi-Fi Enabled Classroom with ADTRAN's Bluesocket Virtual WLAN


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June 20, 2012

St. John's Prep Turns Campus into Wi-Fi Enabled Classroom with ADTRAN's Bluesocket Virtual WLAN

By Stefanie Mosca, TMCnet Managing Editor

For many organizations, transitioning their communication systems to the cloud is the next logical step in organizing and securing their valuable information. However, choosing the right solutions to support that transition and fit the specific needs of each company is the hard part.

And that goes without saying for the education sector. As technology is becoming more and more integrated into the learning process, privately-held schools and organizations at the college level are adopting cloud-enabled technologies to further enhance the education they provide to their students.

Take St. John’s Prep for example, a rigorous college preparatory school located right outside of Boston, MA. The school’s campus serves 1,200 students and promotes a creative environment for its students that foster intellectual growth. And what better tools to enable such an atmosphere than today’s latest technology resources.

However, in order to support St. John’s student’s growth with the help of Web-based technologies and Wi-Fi-enabled devices, the schools wireless network needed a major upgrade. That’s where ADTRAN (News - Alert) came in.

When Chris Butler, director of information services at St. John's Prep, attended ADTRAN’s CONNECT 2012 event in Boston on June 13, he explained how ADTRAN’s Bluesocket (News - Alert) virtual WLAN (vWLAN) solution was a vital part in helping the school embrace the cloud and virtualization across the campus.

Due to the demand for reliable, universal Wi-Fi to support the school’s e-learning programs and ensure the students and staff have unlimited access to online resources around the campus, St. John’s turned to ADTRAN to implement a scalable wireless network that could be efficiently managed across the 175 acre campus.

According to the company, since vWLAN is software-based, scaling is simple and cost-effective and easily enables more access points to be added without an upgrade of a hardware WLAN controller. Even as wireless standards continue to evolve to the next generation of access points, including 802.11ac, no upgrades are needed with the virtual controller.

Butler noted that his team looked into other solutions but the majority of them required additional hardware which only added significant costs and burdens to their IT staff’s resources. ADTRAN ‘s vWLAN solution stood out as it is certified as VMware ready making the installation of the vWLAN software onto St. John’s VMware instance effortless. 

"In the end, we achieved significant savings by avoiding all costs and bottlenecks associated with a hardware-based controller solution and gained a future-proof network with immense scalability to address growing demand on our network," Butler said.  

"St. John's Prep embraced virtualization as an important IT strategy and its decision to virtualize its wireless LAN was a natural extension of its VMware investment," stated Mads Lillelund (News - Alert), general manager of ADTRAN's Bluesocket Business Group. "ADTRAN's vWLAN enables IT departments to cost-effectively scale their wireless network environments to simplified cloud-based management and achieve a remarkably low total cost of ownership."

Edited by Stefanie Mosca

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