Strategy Implementation

In the mid-1980s, the management of a nationwide, post secondary business school group realized that they needed to include desktop computer skills in their curriculum in order to provide their students with the best future employment opportunities. At that time, personal computers and business software was still in its infancy and there were no other proprietary school groups offering such a line of training.

Working with other consultants who set the instructional parameters for the course work, MCS was assigned the responsibility for developing the hands-on component of the training. Reviewing all technology then available, MCS determined that the new capability of "Local Area Networks (LANs)" offered the greatest potential although at the time LAN software was still in a fairly rudimentary form and none of the application training software had yet been developed in network form. MCS developed, installed and demonstrated a prototype of a LAN-based computer lab featuring diskless booting and automatic log-in, menu driven application selection (pre-Windows), printer resource balancing, and security from execution of unauthorized software. MCS was then contracted to perform turn-key installation, support, maintenance and faculty training of these LAN-based computer labs in 18 schools nation wide.

The school group was able to present itself on the leading edge of business computer education as the first schools to offer networked computer labs. Over the next 5 years, until the advent of Windows, over 150 instructors and 5,000 students received hands-on experience in current business software. In that time the security of no individual network was corrupted and, although individual units did occasionally fail, lab redundancy was provided such that no school was ever without lab resources due to network failure.

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