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WESTWOOD : $75-Million High-Tech Home for Grad School

June 11, 1995|CAROL CHASTANG

In launching their new $75-million complex, officials at UCLA's Graduate School of Management say they have set in place the high-tech tools needed to train the 21st-Century manager.

Each seat in every classroom of the seven-building complex is wired to connect with a laptop computer. The computers in the John E. Anderson Graduate School of Management are connected to the school's library and the Internet. Classrooms are equipped with videocassette recorders, video projection systems and laser disc players for multimedia presentations.

Computer applications in business have expanded tremendously over the past few years, said Assistant Dean Jason Frand, who supervised the development of the new computer system. He said it is imperative that UCLA students keep up with ever-advancing computer technology.

UCLA is the first business school in the world to use the Asynchronous Transfer Mode technology, a network with speeds 100 times faster than most others, Frand said. Access to high-speed networks is essential, he added, "because we will see an increased use of graphics and video simulations that are going to be used in business applications." Graphics and video often clog slower networks.

Seven years in the making, the 280,000-square-foot management education complex will replace the former Anderson school, a six-story building constructed in 1961. Frand said the old building will become the new home for the School of Public Policy.

Faculty and staff will be trained to use the new technology, and students will be required to attend a three-hour orientation conducted by computer experts and librarians on how to use the databases. "Then we'll have additional workshops for students over the course of the year," Frand said.

Tuition covers the cost of laptop computers for many students, especially professionals who attend school part time. Some full-time students still work on standard-sized personal computers, but laptops will be mandatory by fall 1996, and the students will keep their laptops when they graduate.

Meanwhile, the management school's curriculum is being upgraded and modernized, Frand said, "to help students acquire skills to become effective business leaders in the next century."

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