Welcome to College; Here’s Your iPad

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ipadmoney_smallADOTAS – “Oh man,” I blurt out as I scan today’s tech news. “I wish I went to Seton Hill — they’re outfitting every full-time student with an iPad!”

“Wow,” my coworker says, mouth slightly unhinged in disbelief. “Wait a second — do you mean Seton Hall?”

“Yeah,” I remark offhandedly, peeling through this story about the lucky bastards at… “What did I say?”

“Seton Hill.”

“Oh. I meant…” I scroll through the article. “It is Seton Hill. What the hell is Seton Hill?”

It’s a private Catholic liberal arts university in Greensburg, Penn. In addition to tuition, $500 per semester enters students into the Griffin Technology Advantage — freshmen receive a 13-inch MacBook laptop in addition to an iPad. And get this: the campus is completely wireless.

Already a considered Kindle killer, the iPad could also replace big bulky textbooks. Already med students can access medical and pharmaceutical guides through apps on their iPhones; replacing textbooks would seem the next logical step. That’s a pretty big industry right there, but I can imagine that used textbook dealers might not be thrilled.

Besides, if they’re not weighed down with 500-page books, maybe those kids will stand up straight for a change.

Seton Hill might not be the most well-known school (You mean you don’t cheer for the fighting Griffins?) but it seems to be ahead of the crowd in terms of reaching the technological promise of higher education. It will be interesting to see how quickly other schools catch up.

Of course, they’ll be private institutions. Somehow I can’t see my state alma mater having the dough to put together a program similar to the Griffin Technology Advantage.

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