‘Insourcing’ remains a campus trend

This month’s In Focus is, I’ll admit, a bit abstract. I’m not sure if the word “insourcing” existed before I pitched the idea, but nevertheless, here we are.

Last month, The BG News wrote about University outsourcing, the practice of hiring private, outside institutions and businesses in regard to student services on campus. Think Chartwells, a private company that runs the University’s Dining Services, or Falcon Mail, a Microsoft-based email system.

Now, we’re taking a look at the opposite trend. What services does the University handle internally? In other words, in what instances does the University take care of things itself rather than hiring private companies to do it instead?

The first thing that comes to mind is University Police. Everybody knows the University has its own police force, but what do they actually do? Are they real cops? What’s their jurisdiction, and how does this involve city police?

Another is Information Technology Services. While many services utilized by ITS are indeed outsourced (Falcon Mail, Canvas), the University does feature an in-house technology department to deal with all such repair issues, computer labs, etc.

More abstractly, think about all the professors, coaches or advisers you’ve had. How many of them graduated from here as well? Ever thought the University favors potential job candidates who come from here?

We’ll take a look at this phenomenon, and others under the umbrella of “insourcing.”

Even in completing my last month here after four years of study, I still learn something new about campus nearly every day.

Hopefully this month’s In Focus will teach you something new or give you a deeper look into things like ITS which you deal with every day.

For those of you who, perhaps regrettably, have dealt with University Police more than you’d like to admit, perhaps this In Focus can serve as a refresher.

Like last month, I offer the same advice of having an open mind. Look at each case individually and decide for yourself if the pros outweigh the cons.

It’s your University. You deserve to know how these institutions affect you. This In Focus sets out to make you aware of just that.