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The Dartmouth
June 17, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

New telephone system in works

The College will upgrade its current telephone system in the coming year, which could allow it to add new features like voice mail to campus telephones, administrators announced yesterday.

According to a statement from Telephone Services, the new system should eliminate many current problems including frequent difficulty making outside calls and cross-talk, when phone lines are temporarily crossed and several conversations can be heard on the same line.

The current system, installed in 1981, is now technologically obsolete. For several years, the system has supported more telephone lines than it was originally designed for, the statement said.

Jules Pellerin, the former manager of Telephone Services, said DarTalk employees pushed for the upgrade because the College needs a more advanced telephone system to function effectively.

"The students should get what they're paying for," Pellerin said.

The College employed Technology Management International, Inc., a company that specializes in college telecommunications, to assist in the transition process.

Over the next 10 months, the contractor will work with Administrative Services Director Marcia Colligan and Telephone Services Supervisor Jim McDonald to design and implement a new system.

Last week, the telephone contractor interviewed about 50 professors and administrators to help determine what menu of services the new system should offer.

The company will develop a needs-assessment report based on the interviews and a review of the physical facilities.

Telephone Services set August 1994 as the target completion date.

New telephone lines will also be added in several buildings. But specifics -- like the potential addition of voice mail -- have not yet been determined because the program is still in its planning stages.

"The new system is not likely to represent the most advanced, state-of-the-art capability, but ... [it will be] ... capable of expanding," the statement said.