Contest winner renames SIS ‘zzusis’

ASWSU chose the new name replacing Student Information Systems and gave away an iPad.

By Kaylee Ray

Greeks gods and an argument at The Coug provided the inspiration for the new name for the Student Information System (SIS). The winning entry was selected on Jan. 4.

ASWSU sponsored the naming contest to enable student participation in the development of the new system, said graduate assistant Kate Esselbach, who works on the SIS project.

“We wanted to ensure a lot of student involvement,” she said. “ASWSU helped with that.” Biochemistry major Jeff Mahoney submitted zzusis Sept. 28, before the contest deadline was extended.

In addition to having his submission selected as the name for WSU’s information systems, Mahoney received an iPad for his entry. Mahoney said he came up with the name after a debate with a friend about which Greek god was the best while at The Coug.

“While I maintain Eros probably would be the best, being the god of love and all, my roommate thought Zeus would be,” he said. “In the heat of the argument (my roommate) yelled out ‘No, you’re wrong, Zeus is.’ If you can imagine what someone would sound like after a long day at The Coug, it sounded more like ‘Zoosys.'”

He said he submitted a couple other names, but did not think he had much of a chance at winning. “If this is my 15 minutes of fame the only thing I really want to do is remind Saints fans that they lost to Seattle in one of the biggest upsets of all time,” he said.

While the decision to change the thirty-year-old system came from administration, ASWSU’s collaboration guaranteed student involvement.

Esselbach said from an administration point of view, developing a new system was necessary. Currently, she said, different departments are using different systems.

“We want a one-stop shop for everyone,” she said.

According to the press release, SIS consists of applications including admissions, financial aid and portal functions such as myWSU. The new system will increase functionality and provide improved information for prospective and current students, as well as WSU faculty, according to the SIS project website. Casey Hanson, director of new media and communication, said students will probably see the first step of the changes in the next couple months. MyWSU will be the first portion to be replaced with zzusis. She said the new portal will have all the old functions, plus a few new features. The calendar on the SIS project website shows February as the tentative “Go Live” date for the portal.

Hanson said the complete new system will be implemented in stages over the next few years. According to the calendar, changes this semester include “Campus Community” and the admissions module, both tentatively scheduled to go live in June.

“There is a lot of technical integration going on,” she said. “We have to test everything to make sure it works properly.” Esselbach said the new system will be easier for everyone by allowing users to access features such as Angel and e-mail from one place without having to go to the university home page first.

For more information on the project, visit


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