Southeast Technical Institute is South Dakota’s largest post-secondary technical institute. They specialize in educating students in 50 different career fields, so they can join the workforce confident in their chosen profession.
The Challenge: 2000 Laptops with Proprietary Software
Southeast Technical Institute is South Dakota’s largest post-secondary technical institute. They specialize in educating students in 50 different career fields, so they can join the workforce confident in their chosen profession. Many of their programs require practical training with expensive, curriculum-specific software.
To support their programs, the IT department issues as many as 2000 laptops pre-loaded with the needed applications. At the end of a semester, the IT department would have to secure all the laptops from the students, then re-image them or upgrade to newer versions of the software. An additional challenge was the online student community, who could only get access to the software by paying expensive licensing fees.
The IT department at STI saw what desktop virtualization could do to improve their operational efficiency and agility, but they also recognized that their existing storage infrastructure was too slow to handle the large and random workload that so many virtual machines would produce. To solve their performance problem, STI still needed to stay within their fixed IT budget.
“We looked at many mainstream storage solutions, including the traditional mechanical disk arrays as well as hybrids, but none of them could match Pure Storage for overall performance, space and consistency. Pure Storage gave us the performance we needed to make our vision for a VDIenabled student community possible. Now, we are more responsive to our clients, can upgrade software packages in the middle of a semester, and will enable the campus to begin moving towards a BYOD environment,” said Erik VanLaecken, CIO at STI.