TJHSST Student Systems Administrators
By Stephen Repetski on Jun 29, 2009
One of the programs at TJHSST that I was a really big fan of (probably because I was involved with it for ~3.5 years) is the Student Systems Administrators program:
The Student Systems Administrators (also known as Sysadmins) are a group of students who have distinguished themselves to be technologically competent as well as exceptionally responsible and dependable. These students are responsible for all of the Computer Systems Lab's infrastructure. These administrators, however, are students first and administrators second. The goal of the administrator program is not to create a perfect system but to give the student system administrators valuable experience in how a real networked environment works.
The network at TJ is set up such that we really only have four paid FCPS staff running the Windows network, the network infrastructure, and support for teachers (along with plenty of other tasks to keep them busy!). The group of Sysadmins is responsible for pretty much everything else: the school website, email service, student intranet, Sun Ray infrastructure, VM infrastructure, DNS, Linux workstation image, etc. etc. The system there is nice in the fact that the students have a lot of free reign over the lab – enough to be free to experiment, but not quite enough to destroy everything. My expertise was with the Sun Ray network and various Solaris-backed services available for use in the lab, including SGD, CUPS, LDAP, and other small things. Many of our services are documented on what we call Livedoc which is our documentation repository with customizations specific to TJ, so feel free to have a look around. One of the articles that seems to have people interested is the IPSec VPN article, which allows for remote Sun Rays (or computers in general) to connect to your network without a need for any extra fancy/expensive hardware.
On the day-to-day work side, finding that mergers is an appropriate time for people to retire or leave a company. There’ve been a couple people so far I’ve met that are either leaving around this time, or who might leave if given a layoff package. \*shrug\* I guess that’s life.