There should be an app for that: SEU in the hands of everyone

St. Edward’s University is missing a key component in its technology basket—a smartphone application.

Of course, many of the big name schools have apps, such as UT-Austin and Stanford, but smaller schools such as Rice University and Seattle Pacific have unveiled apps as well.

These schools recognize the value in providing university resources for mobile device users, and a smartphone app could provide resources not just to current students, but for prospective students, staff, visitors, and alumni.

St. Edward’s just released a mobile website that essentially serves the same function as an app, but the mobile web site can only be accessed if the mobile device is connected to 3G or a wi-fi network. An app can store information di rectly on the mobile device so the user wouldn’t necessarily need a network connection to access certain features.

In addition, the university offers an iPhone Applications course, listed as COSC 3325 in the course list ings. Since there are students on campus who have learned how to develop apps, there is already a group of both students and staff within the university who may be qualified to cre ate a university app.

Not to mention the fact that all full-time students—including undergraduate, graduate, and New College students—pay a hefty $200 technology fee every semester. It seems only natural to use that revenue to develop technology to reach Hill toppers in perhaps the most convenient place—the palms of their hands.

I thumbed through the UT and Rice apps to get ideas about what I’d like to see in a St. Edward’s app. Here are my recommendations.


Commuters can easily spend half an hour looking for parking on campus. If the university installed a vehicle monitoring system to count the number of cars that went in and out of a lot, the infor mation could then be posted on the app. Commuters would then know which lots were full and which parking lots had available spaces. This could ease the flow of traffic and cut commute time for staff and students. CAMPUS MAP

OK, St. Edward’s is a small campus, but this place is a gi ant circular maze. The only map on campus is outside the bookstore, and visitors can’t see it from the main road.

Plus, I’ve been flagged down by weary visitors looking for the art building or the RCC, and quite frankly it’s difficult to give verbal driving directions because all the roads are loops. If I could pull up a campus map on my iPhone, it would be a lot easier to give directions. That being said, a campus map on the university’s app would ben efit new students, prospective students and visitors.


This is a must. If the university could only have one section on the app, I would strongly advocate for this one.

Sure, there’s 25Live event listings on EdWeb, but that’s only accessible by students and staff. There’s the university website, but not all events are listed.

UT’s app lists events in addition to announcements, calls for paper submissions and applications. It’s like the Student E-News—but organized and user-friendly. An events section on a St. Edward’s app would provide a mobile-friendly interface to stay updated on campus events and announcements.


Blackboard does not offer a mobile website, and I find that I often want to access Blackboard from my iPhone. The UT app has a link to a mobile-friendly Blackboard website.