New Email and Calendaring System

Dear Scripps College Community,

We are writing with exciting news about the decision on the new email and calendaring system for Scripps that will replace GroupWise.

Recall that at the end of the last academic year, we surveyed campus community members about preferences and desires for the functionality most valued in a campus email and calendar system.  We are gratified to report that the response rate was excellent, with participation from about 500 community members. Senior staff and the IT team looked at two products and analyzed and evaluated the survey results, which resoundingly led to the decision to replace GroupWise with Office 365.

Office 365 meets all of the email and calendar functionality identified by the community as either important or very important. In addition to Office 365, we also considered Google Mail, which met most of the important functionality. However, Office 365 was superior to Google in a number of areas including its tight integration with the Microsoft Office suite, larger mailboxes, and full Macintosh client support. Only Office 365 included equivalent features to GroupWise such as the ability to delay sending emails, adding attachments directly to meeting invites, email delivery status, and un-sending/retracting email.  In addition, students can gain access to the full Microsoft Office ProPlus suite at no cost for installation on up to five home or personally-owned computers and up to five mobile devices.

Over the summer, we developed a plan to launch Office 365 by January 12, 2015. A detailed implementation plan will be communicated to the community in advance of the launch. Among key elements of this plan:

  • Training – IT will provide several training options, from group/department sessions to self-tutorial videos.
  • Testing – test accounts will be created for every email account, which will enable you to “play” with the system before it goes live.
  • Transfer – all email, contact, and calendar information will be moved from GroupWise to Office 365.
  • Communication and Support – a website will be created to provide current information about the implementation plan and a central access point for getting help and support.

We believe that Office 365 will provide the Scripps community with a robust email, calendar, and document collaboration solution. We appreciate the level of support shown through the survey and look forward to your continued participation in the transition. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.


Amy Marcus-Newhall, VP for Academic Affairs and Dean of Faculty
Donna Ng, VP for Business Affairs and Treasurer
Jeffrey Sessler, Director of Information Technology