Communities Designed to Foster Collaboration

A key differentiator for consortia such as NJEdge is the role it plays in gathering various digital stakeholders together to collaborate and contemplate the broader themes, challenges and opportunities affecting organizations that rely heavily upon information technology resources to achieve their missions. This goal transcends simply providing products and services to fulfill basic needs. Rather, it reflects an intentional commitment to promote research, scholarly capacity and insight across membership and among peers that comprise what we have labeled NJEdge’s Communities of Practice. These communities, made up of NJEdge member and industry partners within specific subject matter domains, gather thought leaders that share an abiding concern for something they do and a commitment to learn how to do it better as they interact regularly. The NJEdge community flourishes by bringing together members around certain topics to exchange best practices, learn new skills and ask questions in an environment that fosters trust and improvement for all involved.

Big Data and Analytics

The use of longitudinal data, creation of data lakes and data stores, and  predictive analytics to research, improve processes, and construct intervention strategies for enhanced student success are all part of the higher education landscape today. This Community of Practice  convenes to  move forward the big data and analytics agenda within the state of New Jersey and the region as it relates to sponsored research, research infrastructure and capacity, and data used to inform, predict and model the traditional and non-traditional student life-cycle. Working in concert with the New Jersey Big Data Alliance, this community will be an instrumental voice in the trajectory of current century applications for big data. For more information on joining this Community of Practice, please contact Dr. Edward Chapel.


Inasmuch as networking constitutes the core and foundational competency defining the NJEdge organization, the Networking Community of Practice focuses on a wide variety of issues and topics of interest to Network Engineers, Managers, and Technicians and holds regular meetings at participating member institutions to ensure the Community remains engaged, informed and consultative regarding the evolution of NJEdge’s core asset. This Community of Practice is instrumental in crafting solutions such as the distributed denial of service (DDoS) threat vector monitoring and mitigation program and strategy that has brought NJEdge to a leadership position among the Nation’s Research and Education Networks in this area of service. For more information on joining this Community of Practice, please contact Jim Stankiewicz.


The NJCIO Forum brings together Chief Information Officers from New Jersey’s higher education institutions and provides them with an appropriate forum to discuss their top concerns, share best practice on tackling tactical and strategic issues confronting the wider community and identifying solutions to their problems in a timely, effective manner. The NJCIO Forum is often called upon to provide thought leadership and suggest agendas and priorities for others among the Communities of Practice. Meeting a minimum of three times per year, the Forum exercises a collaborative leadership model to respond to emerging national, regional and statewide challenges that impact the education community. For more information on joining this Community of Practice, please contact Brad Morton.

Service Desk and Customer Support

Recognizing the proliferation of technology services environments with the emergence of cloud and hybrid-cloud environments as well as the sheer growth in the number of applications, services and devices arriving on campuses with the BYOD movement, the Service Desk and Customer Support Community of Practice seeks to foster collaboration among NJEdge members by exploring current and emerging standards and best practices in service management frameworks, outsourced services and delivery of robust technology services. Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) standards of practice are a key driver for this community, which focuses heavily upon professional development opportunities and recommending best practices based upon shared successes and operational challenges in the administration of user services. The Service Desk and Customer Support Community of Practice seeks to delivery to NJEdge stakeholders insight and actionable strategies to utilize institution-wide technology, deliver excellent customer service, and continuously improve the caliber of technical support efficacy. For more information on joining this Community of Practice, please contact Michael Hacker.

Education and Technology

The Education and Technology Community of Practice convenes around the multiple facets of technology and pedagogy including best practices in instruction, delivery of online education, emerging educational technologies, learning space design and the measurement and assurance strategies for student success. This collaboration is accomplished by bringing together the collective expertise of faculty, technologists and administration to stimulate and sustain online and hybrid learning initiatives and emerging educational technologies through events such as the Faculty Showcase and Best Practices Summit held each spring, as well as group meetings with speaker forums and demonstrations offered periodically throughout the year. For more information on joining this Community of Practice, please contact Dr. Edward Chapel.


The newest among the NJEdge communities of practice, the Security Resource Group grew out of the Data Resources Group with the recognition that security in all of its facets touches every aspect of the enterprise and extends well beyond the perimeter of the enterprise network. The group focuses on the full spectrum of security concerns and dedicates itself to understanding, supporting and uniting the people, processes, standards and technologies that are needed to mitigate threats to our organizations, their students and personnel. The Group’s domain expertise pertains to workflows and cybersecurity processes to prevent losses, efficiently utilize resources and strategies to maximize the ROI on security centered application and infrastructure investments. The Group also promotes adoption of national standards to inform local policy and endorses developing metrics and common threat indicators to monitor risk. For more information on joining this Community of Practice, please contact Michael Reekie.

Emerging K-12 Tech Directors

This new Community of Practice supports the professional development and state-wide conversation related to technology in the New Jersey K-12 environment. With an agenda to explore the potential for training and certifications, micro-credentialing, and other professional development and support activities, this community draws on a wide base of expertise to participate in regular meetings and activities that advance the state of educational technologies in K-12. NJEdge will facilitate a concerted effort, in partnership with the New Jersey School Boards Association, to bring together stakeholders engaged in the K-12 educational technology space. For more information on joining this Community of Practice, please contact Larry Cocco.

Upcoming Community of Practice Meetings

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