Campus WiFi expands

LMC internet extends to Parking Lot A.

Michael Benedian, Staff Writer

For students who park in Lot A, if they check their phones before walking onto campus, they may notice a big change. The Los Medanos College WiFi is able to connect to devices before reaching the library, and it’s all thanks to the Contra Costa College District IT team. The college WiFi this semester has now been extended to cover Parking Lot A, which should give students access to the internet at a further distance from campus.

Beginning in the fall of 2019, the district IT team created a three-year infrastructure project to expand on-campus WiFi. The extended coverage to Lot A is just one of the changes made from this project. Students might remember how back in 2018 signing onto the campus WiFi required a sign in everytime you came. Now, all students need to do is set up an app once every semester and their device will auto connect every time.

This particular project of extending WiFi cost approximately $5700 according to Technology Systems Manager Carl Chiu. This was made possible because this project was able to utilize the existing infrastructure that was already in place on Lot A. As for Lot B and C seeing WiFi coverage, there are currently no plans made as of now to extend it there.

“I am not aware of any more plans to further extend WiFi into parking lots. This will depend on funding those kinds of projects,” Chiu said. “Each parking lot site would have variable differences in available infrastructure that would impact the cost of similar projects around the campus.”

Students who are attending the Brentwood campus should also not expect the parking lot to have extended WiFi access either.

“The WiFi was already designed appropriately when the building was opened, so no, Brentwood is not part of this project,” said Director of Information Technology Satish Warrier.

This physical expansion should improve making connections to the Campus WiFi, but if students who connect from Parking Lot A start to feel it being spotty or not working properly, Chiu recommends getting into contact with the 4CD District help desk at (925)-229-6888.

“They may be able to advise if there is a global or campus wide issue affecting WiFi at the time,” Chiu said. “We observe this sometimes where a device issue for a few possible reasons is having difficulty with weaker signals, [and] another device right next to it can be working fine.”

A technological change like this might seem minor, but given the fact that students are now required to have a campus pass before entering, this change could not have come at a better time. Connecting to the campus WiFi from such a distance could definitely help students, should they forget to take their assessment before leaving home.