Heads in the Clouds

Inside Higher Ed has a very Campus 2.0 article on a new problem facing college administrators: new students who already have email addresses and are therefore reluctant to use the ones their schools provide.

In order to keep things simple, many students set up their institutional accounts to automatically forward mail to one of their existing, cloud-based mailboxes. Students prefer not to check multiple mailboxes if they don’t have to, said Geoff Nathan, faculty liaison to computing and information technology at Wayne State University. When he asked his students recently why the majority of them auto-forwarded their e-mails to an outside account, they cited features often unavailable on campus accounts, such as texting, video chatting, and virtually unlimited storage space.

Some campuses are embracing this trend (and it would be foolish—and futile not to), but it brings with it all manner of security concerns and increases the risk of emails not getting through to their intended recipients.

Jesse Singal

Jesse Singal is a former opinion writer for The Boston Globe and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. He is currently a master's student at Princeton's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Policy. Follow him on Twitter at @jessesingal.