Smart Cards coming to Skyline College

 (John Harrison)

(John Harrison)

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Skyline students will soon be using smart cards, making college life a bit easier.

Already in use at most universities and recently instated at Foothill College, smart cards are essential to any busy and forgetful college student.

The smart card utilizes new technology that would eliminate the need for extra identification and access cards. The card works as an ID, library card, printing card, and debit card.

Students at other colleges use the card when the teacher takes roll, to access academic and financial information, make purchases on campus, check out books, in the health center, in printing labs, to get into on-campus events, and to even get discounts off campus.

“It’s an exciting improvement,” Abderraouf Haddad, an automotive major at Skyline, said.

Smart cards were discussed in the last ASSC meeting as a real possibility for Skyline College.

The card is “a great move into the 21st century,” Commissioner of Activities Ray Parenti-Kurtila said.

The card is the size of a credit card and has a memory chip embedded as a strip on the back that can be swiped to access information.

“It could be one ultimate card,” Parenti-Kurtila said.

The card is not only convenient but inexpensive as well. The card also will require a PIN (Personal Identification Number) to keep account information secure.

“It could be really useful, especially for students that don’t already have a credit card,” Kaylene Dillard, a Skyline student, said. “Parents could use it to contribute to and monitor their kids’ spending at school.”

It doesn’t just benefit students but administrators, faculty and staff as well. Faculty can use the card not only to access the classroom but also to take roll without using paper or even taking the time to do it. Staff could use the card to access campus facilities.

“I don’t know, why do students need another card, couldn’t they just use their old cards?” Christina Chow, a Skyline student asked.

The technology does have its downsides. There is always a chance of cards being duplicated or stolen and being used by someone who isn’t the true owner. These risks come with every card a student regularly carries and uses.

Having all that access in one card could be somewhat of a security risk if it fell into the wrong hands. With improving technology the use of PIN smart cards are becoming very difficult to duplicate.

Smart cards are one more improvement to Skyline’s growing student body and campus upgrading.