The Software-Defined College. This school year, students won’t be the only ones getting graded. With an ever-changing IT environment, higher education (HED) institutions have to keep up. MeriTalk’s new report, “Cloud Campus: The Software-Defined College,” underwritten by VMware and Carahsoft, reveals the size of the HED cloud market – $4.4B – and that 19 percent of HED IT spending, or $4B per year, is done outside of the central IT function. As they face these challenges head on in an effort to enable academic missions, HED IT executives recognize that cloud is the key to progress. Fifty-three percent say cloud is vital to their institution’s future competitiveness, and more than one-third say cloud will help improve student retention rates. Institutions also recognize the power of software-defined environments. Though just one in five have deployed software-defined technology, more than twice as many see it as an effective solution for their IT challenges. To address growing IT requirements, the primary enterprise benefits they see to a truly centralized, software-defined campus include increased operational efficiency, improved continuity of operations, improved security, decreased operating expenditures, and decreased capital expenditures. Download the report to learn more about the cloud opportunity in higher education.