Students at Pittsburg State may not realize how much their PSU e-mails have changed when they get back to school in the fall.

Students at Pittsburg State may not realize how much their PSU e-mails have changed when they get back to school in the fall.
At the beginning of 2009, Pittsburg State came to an agreement with Google to have e-mail hosted through a Pitt State server but “powered by Gmail.” While some students have made the switch and all incoming students will get the Gmail, not all have done so. That decision is being made for them by the time school starts in August.
The switch to the new e-mail comes with plenty of incentives. Not only do students get new applications such as calendar, Google Docs, and the various chat features available to Gmail, but perhaps the biggest improvement to the e-mail system is simply the amount of space. The old e-mail system, according to Pittsburg State officials, had 25 megabytes of space.
“Before, the amount of size kind of limited the things people could do with the e-mail,” said Barbara Herbert, assistant director of the Pittsburg State Office of Information Services. “We would have people who hadn’t checked their e-mail in a while, and when they did they couldn’t get in because it was full. We’d have to grant a temporary exception to get them back in.”
With Gmail, that is no longer a problem. Gmail comes with more than 7 gigabytes of space. That’s almost 287 times more space than before.
In addition, Gmail allows one feature that Pitt State couldn’t offer before.
“Previously, when students left the university, their e-mail address automatically closed out, too,” said Jeff Schooley, PSU help desk manager. “With this, they can continue to use their e-mail even after they graduate.”
Even more than space and applications, the new features of PSU mail include an appeal to technology. Gmail, unlike the previous system, is compatible with phone technology.
All told, the changes in e-mail systems have been encouraging for the Pittsburg State help desk.
“Lately, the calls to the help desk about e-mail have been how to set up the phone,” Schooley said. “They aren’t really complaints, it’s just, ‘Wow. This is cool. How do we use this?’ I’m much happier to have that than the complaints from before.”

Andrew Nash can be reached at andrew.nash@morningsun.net or by calling 231-2600 ext. 132.