Managed IT Case Study: National University of Health Sciences
by Gordon Flesch Company, on 03/01/2021
ELEVITY AND SCALE COMPUTING’S HC3 MAKE
THE GRADE AT NATIONAL UNIVERSITY
With two campuses in Lombard (IL) and St. Petersburg (FL), the National University of Health Sciences offers degree programs in chiropractic, acupuncture, naturopathic, and other areas of integrative medicine. Their IT infrastructure, outsourced support from Elevity, and small on-premise IT department support more than 500 students and roughly 200 faculty and staff members. However, the university’s aging server architecture was a ticking time bomb that threatened to derail the school’s ability to deliver remote learning – an essential offering during the coronavirus pandemic.
Although the university’s IT team knew the server environment was in need of an upgrade and had been causing problems, it all came to a head in March 2020. Right as COVID was hitting hard and the university was shifting to more remote learning, the Student Information Server (SIS) was constantly going down and requiring reboots. Without a reliable SIS to offer authentication, students couldn’t access the school’s online learning system.
“We were up against a number of serious infrastructure issues. Our old on-premise servers had to be updated. We needed a way to virtualize legacy servers running essential programs. And without a server expert on our IT staff, we needed a simple, easy-to-manage system. Most importantly, our students and staff were depending on us to minimize downtime and increase reliability.” says Ron Mensching.
That’s when Elevity recommended hyperconverged infrastructure from Scale Computing. It provided NUHS
the framework for a more stable server environment, and it allowed them to move some servers to the cloud while keeping some things hosted on premise.
With Scale Computing installed and maintained by Elevity, the university virtualized its legacy servers, can spin up secure virtual machines for testing, and enjoys dependable data backups and disaster recovery. Using its simple management console, the small NUHS IT department can quickly resolve many issues on their own – though the Elevity team is always available to provide additional support if needed.
“Scale Computing doesn’t just solve one of our problems, it solves many of them – all from a single appliance. With Elevity and Scale Computing, I feel more confident now in our network’s reliability, security, and versatility. It’s so easy that we can reboot a down server ourselves in just minutes if necessary. It gives us more options and possibilities for the future of our infrastructure.” says Ron Mensching.
Thanks to a well-organized implementation from the expert project team at Elevity, the Scale Computing installation went smoothly and quickly. Since the deployment, NUHS is experiencing little to no downtime. Staff and students can work remotely with few hiccups.
This reliability combined with the stability and easy management of their Scale Computing system has relieved much of the pressure on the internal IT department. It has also laid the foundation for many future improvements to the university’s infrastructure.
“Overall, we’re seeing more uptime and better resiliency since moving to Scale Computing. It feels great to be able to deliver a better user experience. But with Scale Computing, I don’t just have benefits for today, I have benefits I can use tomorrow. It’s something I can build off of. It’s going to make it so much easier for me to expire older servers and bring in new components going forward. I’m glad I have a partner like Elevity to help me make solid IT decisions for the university.” says Ron Mensching.
“HCI from Scale Computing has given me more confidence in our network. I can depend on it to handle the needs of our hybrid infrastructure both now and in the future. Scale Computing provides flexibility, security, and ease of management for my small IT staff while delivering increased reliability. Elevity recommended the perfect solution to answer our needs.”
— Ron Mensching
Vice President, Business Services