Italy’s first Open University moves to the cloud to free up resources and build an international platform for award-winning education
London, 4th October, 2013: Marconi University has selected Interoute, owner operator of Europe’s largest cloud services platform, to host its online campus e-Learning platform on Interoute Virtual Data Centre (VDC). This move will enable Marconi University to improve the reliability and performance of its virtual learning resources, which support its students across the globe twenty-four hours a day. Moreover, as the Interoute VDC solution has enabled the University to cut the cost of running its e-Learning platform by 23 per cent, it can focus more financial resource on its innovation drive.
Marconi University became Italy’s first Open University in 2004, and today offers graduate and postgraduate courses to more than 14,000 students around the world. The University integrates traditional classroom teaching methods with virtual learning resources, and distributes educational content to mobile devices, such as laptops, tablets and smartphones, and the Marconi WebTV Channel via its online Virtual Campus e-Learning platform.
Interoute VDC was selected by Marconi University to improve the uptime of the e-Learning platform and boost the educational experience of its students. Combined with a Virtual Private Network (VPN), also from Interoute, the University’s headquarters in Rome and their regional offices are now connected to their own private cloud. The platform is hosted in the Interoute VDC facility in London. Linked by the secure VPN, the University also uses the Interoute VDC facility in Amsterdam for the backup of training materials, including data-rich media, such as video recordings.
The University previously hosted its IT infrastructure in a colocation facility in Rome, with the servers and storage managed by a third party. The ageing storage hardware in the facility was costing the University’s IT department more and more to maintain, hampering its focus on innovation and impacting the availability of its e-Learning services to students.
Nicola De Marco, IT Area Systems Manager at Marconi University, comments: "We wanted to completely release our IT department from the burdens of managing hardware systems. Our students from around the world need to be able to access our services and educational materials any time, day or night. In technology terms, this means we need a high-performance infrastructure that has very high levels of availability and network resilience. The Interoute VDC solution is 23% cheaper a year to run than our previous solution, which means we can now focus much more time and financial resources on driving strategic projects for the University.”
Matthew Finnie, CTO of Interoute, said: “Educational institutions are increasingly turning to virtualised online learning platforms to make sure students can follow lessons, prepare for exams, take practice tests and interact with tutors at whatever time of day they wish. By moving its e-Learning platform to Interoute VDC, Marconi University has achieved significant cost savings and financial flexibility. The scalability of Interoute VDC means the University can add to its range of services at any time, and because the price for ‘bursting’ beyond its committed resources is fixed in advance, there won’t be any surprises later on.”
Interoute Communications Ltd is the owner operator of Europe's largest cloud services platform, which encompasses over 60,000 km of lit fibre, 10 hosting data centres and 31 collocation centres, with connections to 140 additional third-party data centres across Europe. Its full-service Unified ICT platform serves international enterprises, as well as every major European telecommunications incumbent and the major operators of North America, East and South Asia, governments and universities. These organisations find Interoute the ideal partner for computing, connectivity and communications and developing new services. Its Unified ICT strategy has proved attractive to enterprises looking for a scalable, secure and unconstrained platform on which they can build their voice, video, computing and data services, as well as service providers in need of high capacity international data transit and infrastructure. With established operations throughout mainland Europe, North America and Dubai, Interoute also owns and operates dense city networks throughout Europe's major business centres. www.interoute.com
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About University Marconi
Marconi University is a recognised leader in online education, offering its students traditional and blended learning settings. The University currently has more than 14,000 students enrolled in undergraduate and graduate programs, 300 faculty members and an academic advisory team of more than 200 experts. Marconi University is named after Guglielmo Marconi, winner of a Nobel Prize in Physics for his contribution to radio communications. It was his inspiration that gave the University a strong focus on innovation. www.marconiuniversity.org/