Less paper, less problems: College set to change printing system in October


Whitney Kline prints off papers at Kent Campus Center

by Amelia Schafer, Staff Reporter

In October, Simpson will be changing how students and staff print on campus in an effort to save money and improve security. 

Students and staff will be required to utilize a new queuing system in order to print documents. Upon logging into Papercut, they will see a “Find Me” queuing option. In the past, the individual printer was selected from a menu on Papercut. Documents will then be sent to the queue directly, where they will remain until printed later.

After queuing documents, students and employees must use their Simpson ID card to log in at the printer of choice. If the printer has a touch screen, students will be able to see all of their documents that have been sent to the “Find Me” queue on Papercut. Then they will be able to go to any of the printers on campus and see the queue. They can then select their document and print from there. 

Some printers will have a “Fast-Pass” option, which will allow for all documents in the queue to be printed as soon as the student or staff member ID is swiped. 

Logging into the printer can be done with your ID card, but if students don’t have it, they can also choose to enter their seven-digit Simpson ID number or log in with your Simpson credentials.

These changes have arisen for many different reasons, one of the biggest is conserving money and paper. 

“For years we have recognized an issue with people printing documents and never picking them up which is a definite waste of paper, toner and money,” director of information services Lynne Jensen said. 

As campuses across the nation deal with lower enrollment, conserving money becomes a big issue. 

“Everyone’s looking for methods to reduce expenses and become more efficient with fewer employees.  One expense reduction effort that IT can oversee is an overhaul of printers,” Jensen commented. “Last spring, we conducted a printing audit at Simpson. We worked with a vendor called MMIT to analyze current printing expenses and where we could reduce cost and need for support.” 

Besides the issue of cost-effective printing, another initiative is more secure printing. 

“People need a secure method to print documents that contain private information such as SSN (social security numbers), ID numbers, degree audits, grades, etc.,” Jensen said. “Printing such data to a public location is a risk and in the past that incurred more expense and increased calls for support of those devices, so it was not a good practice, and students have not had a way to print securely to campus printers.”

The IT staff does recognize these changes will cause some students distress, as printing several minutes before a class begins may become more difficult. 

“Ideally, documents needed for class will be printed well before the five minutes prior to class starting,” Jensen said. “As the need to log in or authenticate to a printer means you must be present at the machine, a line of 20 people trying to print something before they walk into their classes will be frustrating for many.”

The department encourages students to plan ahead in order to make this process easier. 

As the roll out plan for these changes draws closer, more information will be made available to students.

“Our first priority is to make secure printing available to students, so they will be the first to be impacted by these changes,” Jensen stated.

Some students, however, are not happy about the changes. 

“I think that in part this could be a smart idea,” sophomore Ava Shannon said. “However, I think this is going to make things way harder. Printers already don’t work six out of ten times. Last year when I lived in Barker, they were constantly broken. Hopefully this works, but I’m not confident.” 

Some changes will be made in October but there is no finalized roll out plan yet.