UCSB: We've got an App for that!

October 14, 2015

New Technology Helps Gauchos Navigate Campus Life

My name is Xuewen Sherry Li and I am a second-year student at UCSB. I worked as a summer intern for Residential & Community Living. One of the projects I took on as an intern was the UCSB Mobile App. The idea started small - we wanted a mobile app for Week of Welcome events the same way that there was a mobile app for Spring Insight last year. However, after a week of research and talking to many students and staff, we felt it was time to dream bigger and aim higher; we wanted a UCSB mobile app that centralized all campus events and put all campus resources in one place! We wanted a technology that increased student engagement and optimized administrative functions.

The mobile app project grew bigger at the same time that my internship was ending. Fortunately, I was hired by Administrative & Residential Information Technology to continue the work, and that is where I am now. Within the first week of launch, 4000+ active users downloaded the app, with 50% of them being first year students. I have collaborated with numerous students and staff throughout this entire process to make it come true, and our next step is to set up an official governance for a committee that will work together to sustain the app for many years to come.

Here is a walk through of each tab in the app:
•    Map: An interactive map of campus buildings and Isla Vista to help users navigate around the campus and find events nearby
•    List: Organizations/Greek Life/residential buildings called “Lists” that contain events for users to subscribe to
•    Calendar: A calendar that integrates campus events and your personal agenda
•    Check-in: QR code to check-in at event, redeem prizes, etc.
•    More: Quicklinks to bus schedules, dining commons menus, GOLD, GauchoSpace, directory of departmental phone numbers, and much more!

To download the new UCSB App, go to Involvio, create an account and select UCSB.

By Xuewen Sherry Li