Student Email Accounts at UAH

Back when I was getting my first1 baccalaureate degree at UAH, students were not automatically issued email accounts. This was 1997, and the University’s IT department created individual, access-limited accounts on a UNIX machine. If you knew what you were doing, you could do a lot of UNIX stuff with that account. I knew enough to be dangerous and find the limits. [Somehow, I didn’t get shut down.]

Getting those accounts was an interesting process, though. Students went to the SGA office and filled out a form to get an account. We filled out a form by hand. This was peculiar to me then, and it’s a historical footnote that I wanted kept alive. After joining SGA that year, I was a part of the team that handled those requests for IT. I asked one of the staff members—who still works for UAH, so I won’t name him—why this was done, and he told me that SGA got involved because IT got overwhelmed with requests, and SGA was equipped to know which people were and weren’t students and then get information to them as appropriate.

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Fast forward 14 years and the IT system now makes it impossible for me to pay them. We’re talking seven clicks after a login, and then only if you know exactly where you’re going. Maybe I should give the SGA my debit card number.

  1. I start my second on Wednesday