Students will now be charged per page printed in select areas with the school’s new printing system. Bringing paper to computer labs will no longer be necessary. Students will instead swipe their ID card to activate a document to be printed.
The new printing system became available to students on Sept. 30. These printers are located in Tutu’s, the Roux Library and the Rinker Technology Center.
“With this system, the school is taking a greener initiative,” Chief Information Officer John Thomas said.
Thomas and Bill Langston, dean of student development, discussed the school’s options to decide which would be the most efficient system for students. They researched Florida institutions which use a similar printing system before transitioning students.
“This is more typical of what you would find at most colleges and universities as opposed to a bring-your-own-paper system,” Langston said. “It will be easy to manage your print charges.”
The school’s primary printer and copier vendor, Ricoh, recommended the school use the print management solution “Pharos Systems.” Pharos Systems encourages companies and universities to print less and be more environmentally aware. Using this technology was something Thomas had wanted to put into motion for a while.
“The reason I chose them was because they were a complete solution, and they made it easy for the students to use,” Thomas said.
There are two options to set up a document to be printed: MobilePrint and lab computers.
Students can set up a document to print from their phone or computer, which links to the student’s ID.
“The flexibility is what I’m most excited about with this new system,” Langston said. “It affords students [the opportunity] to queue print jobs for when they return to campus.”
MobilePrint can be accessed from any device, whether a student is on campus or hours away from campus. The program requires students to access a website, which then asks students to log on with their network login.
The student will then upload a document to print from their device or email, choose whether he or she wants a color or black and white print, duplex printing, or copies.
Each time a student swipes his or her card to the printer, the balance will be displayed on the screen and adjusted with each print.
Students, such as junior Grace Mueller, are concerned about the charge. As a member of the Recycling Program, Mueller sees the sustainability aspect of the new system.
“I wasn’t so happy at first, but they used to charge us at my high school, so I understand that ink is expensive,” Mueller said. “It will be good for the environment because students will be more conscious of what they print. Being able to post papers and PowerPoints online is something we are able to do with today’s technology, and I like to save paper by taking advantage of this.”
Once the $20 credit is used, students must add money to their Moc Bucks account. Moc Bucks can be added or managed at the Student Accounts office.
“It makes people think about what they are printing,” Thomas said.
Students will be charged 10 cents for black and white prints or copies, and 20 cents for color prints or copies.
If a student chooses duplex printing and copying, which involves printing on both sides of the paper, they will be charged 8 cents per black and white page, and 18 cents per color page. Scanning pages to a device is free.
There will be no charge for students to use the service from now until Fall Break. Once students return from Fall Break, the $20 printing credit will be applied to student IDs.
“You get a $20 credit for the fall and a $20 credit for the spring,” Langston said. “Students can still use their own printers in their rooms. They don’t have to use the school system to print. There are still other options for students if they are worried about the cost component.”
Another student from the Recycling Program, senior Stephanie Elwell, is concerned about the pay-per-print system.
“I was a little shocked to hear that I couldn’t use the printers as often as I wanted,” Elwell said. “I think this will help the waste of paper, but then again we don’t have paper bins in dorms, so if people buy their own printers, they are still wasting paper.”
Tutu’s and the library each have one printer that prints both black and white and color. The Tech Center contains two separate printers, one for black and white, and one for color. These printers also double as copier machines.
If students have difficulty printing or forget a step, they can visit the Portal for instructions located under “Help Documents: Student Printing Documents.”
When Thomas and Langston researched other institutions that used a similar system, they were attentive to the per-print costs in regards to what FSC would charge. Other Florida colleges which use the same printing solution include USF, Hillsborough Community College and St. Petersburg College.
“The school looked at the benefits of what this was going to do for students,” Langston said. “We’re charging students a lower end of per-print costs and trying to be cognizant of the fact that this is going to be a change.”