Keeping the lights on while critically understaffed

The Academic Technologies team at Mount Holyoke College is the result of three departmental restructurings over the course of the pandemic. We were originally two teams, totaling eight people, with expertise in several fields. We lost six of those people by October 2021. We only retained two of the open positions, which seemed to need unicorns and thus stayed unfilled for years. Have we been playing an elaborate game of Last One Standing and no one told us?

We’re web developers — we know how to write and run web applications — but without subject matter experts we don’t know how to provide good support for digital library services like DSpace and Islandora or academic environments like JupyterHub and RStudio.

Come learn how we’ve kept the lights on and shining brightly to keep our customers (mostly) happy, in the darkness of critical understaffing and lack of expertise or even experience with some of the technologies we support, all while staying (mostly) engaged and productive.


  • Abby Drury — Mount Holyoke College
  • Jae Proctor — Mount Holyoke College

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