Jul 9th, 2012 @ 2:08 pm | Author: Dr. Steve Shirley
Later this week, Valley City State University will launch a new Identification Card system known as the Viking Card. The Viking Card is the official identification card for all VCSU students and employees.

The new Viking Card will have significantly more functionality as compared to the ID card system currently used on campus. This Card is based on new technology being installed across campus, and it is based on the Blackboard Transact system, part of Blackboard, Inc. The deployment of this new card system has been a major effort during the past year led by our Chief Information Officer, Joe Tykwinski, and has involved numerous employees throughout many departments across campus. It represents a significant upgrade both technologically and from a student-service perspective for the VCSU campus.

Beyond serving simply as an official form of identification, the Viking Card will have a number of other important functions. It will be used to gain access into certain facilities, such as residence halls, using a microchip and antenna built into the card. The Viking Card will serve as the official form of payment/use for students' meal plans. It will also be used for admittance to campus events such as athletic contests and student events. The Viking Card will be used for checking out materials at VCSU's Allen Memorial Library and from the Information Technology Help Desk. The card will also be used for purchasing items in the Viking I restaurant, VCSU Bookstore, Viking Grounds (the Starbucks coffee shop in the Student Center), and may eventually function with campus vending machines. It will also serve as a form of payment in the Business Office, acting as a debit card for students.

The Viking Card might even function as a form of debit card for students wanting to make purchases with off-campus merchants and retailers in the Valley City community. Services such as these are not yet implemented with the initial Viking Card deployment this summer, but it is a distinct possibility in the near future.

The Viking Card also has online functionality whereby a student (or his/her family) can access the Card online and add value to the card through a deposit. Additionally, students can view their balance and purchasing activity as well as immediately disable a lost or stolen card.

These types of multi-functional ID cards are becoming more and more common at colleges and universities as students are expecting additional services in their campus experience. The implementation of the Viking Card and its related technologies certainly makes sense for VCSU given our technology-based campus mission. We are excited to roll out this new service for our students as they return to campus next month, and we look forward to the new possibilities and inter-connectedness the Viking Card technology will provide for all VCSU students.