Network Infrastructure History
In the beginning...Prior to May 1989, calls were transferred throughout campus using an AT&T Dimension system. Extensions were assigned by a lottery system as the Dimension system had become obsolete. The new Nortel PBX (now upgraded to an Option 81C), was cutover August 4, 1990 with 733 analog telephone sets installed in student rooms and 498 administrative phones in staff and faculty offices. At the time of cutover we installed 2,930 miles of 24 gauge copper wire pairs and 160 miles of fiber optic cable. Because Sewanee is located on the top of the Cumberland plateau approximately 15,000 cubic feet of sandstone was removed (enough to fill a 1,900 square foot house); 6600 copper pairs in 39 buildings and 33 twelve pair fiber pairs were installed; data connections were installed. The main outside cable runs were placed in concrete enclosed conduit. Each student living area has at least one telephone with local calling and 0+ calling at no extra cost to the student. (Many suites are equipped with more than one phone.) This was the beginning of a new era as the University began a long distance resell program for students, faculty, and staff. Payphones were taken out of resident halls and phone extensions became a convenience...not a commodity. For a virtual project tour click here.