National Award Recognizes Community Leaders’ Work on Internet2 NET+ Google Workspace for Education
Congratulations to the Internet2 NET+ Google Workspace for Education service evaluation team and to the four community leaders at the helm of the effort who received the 2021 National Cloud Leadership Award – Overall Winner from E&I Cooperative Services.
The award recipients are:
- Kitty Bridges, Interim Chief Information Security Officer for the Global Office of Information Security, New York University
- Klara Jelinkova, Vice President and CIO, Harvard University
- Jack Suess, Vice President for IT and CIO, University of Maryland Baltimore County
- Garret Yoshimi, Vice President for IT and CIO, University of Hawaii
In May 2020, representatives from several universities came together to initiate a service evaluation to bring Google Workspace for Education (GWE) into the NET+ program.
Bridges, Jelinkova, Suess, and Yoshimi were instrumental in getting the team across the finish line, leading a successful multi-month negotiation with Google for contract terms and pricing that meet the needs of the research and education (R&E) community.
“Internet2 and the R&E community are deeply familiar with the myriad ways in which we are all stronger together,” said Sean O’Brien, associate vice president of the NET+ program. “Jack, Garret, Kitty, and Klara stepped up during an incredibly difficult and disruptive time – they knew the challenges in the cloud content collaboration space and contributed significantly to shaping a NET+ GWE service that benefits not only their campuses but the broader R&E community.”
The effort culminated in June 2021 with the launch of a custom NET+ GWE offering vetted by higher ed for research and education.
“This was a great project. I think we showed that when the community comes together, listens to each other, and then works closely with vendors, we can find solutions that we can all live with,” said Jack Suess, who co-chaired the effort alongside Klara Jelinkova, during his acceptance speech. “This was a community effort, and that was what made the difference.”
“This was a wonderful collaboration across many members of the higher education community, Internet2, and Google,” Jelinkova added. “Both Jack and I are very pleased and delighted to be able to accept this award on behalf of the community – but we are what would be two little squares on the Hollywood Squares that it took to make this happen.”
Altogether, 26 universities participated in the service evaluation and negotiation process in collaboration with Internet2.
“Many thanks to everyone who participated in the collaborative effort and to E&I for recognizing successes like this that position the research and education community for a sustainable future in the cloud,” O’Brien said.
Interested in learning more about the NET+ Google Workspace for Education offering? View the NET+ Google Workspace for Education service page and Frequently Asked Questions, or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.