Almost Heaven for Mobile Payments as Marshall University Starts Accepting

May 14, 2019         By: Steven Anderson

While lately, West Virginia brings to mind images of quite possibly the most disappointing Fallout installment ever, for those at its Marshall University, it’s got a new connotation in mind: mobile payments. A recent development brings both mobile payments and mobile-phone-based ID systems to the campus, for anyone packing a comparatively recent iPhone or wearing an Apple Watch.

The new system allows for a surprising depth of options on campus, including the ability to use a pre-purchased meal plan in residence halls, purchase food at other locations, make purchases with vending machines and at the university bookstore, access printing services, and even enter and exit residence halls or libraries. It’s essentially taking the place of the standard student ID card.

This move puts Marshall University in an enviable position among technologically-advancing universities; it’s one of the first 10 schools in the entire US to put such a system to work. It’s also the first school at all in West Virginia to do so, giving it a clear point ahead of many of its contemporaries.

Marshall University’s associate vice president for information technology and chief information officer Dr. Edward Aractingi noted “We are excited to bring this modern technology to our university community of students, faculty, and staff. The convenience of having university IDs on iPhone and Apple Watch and the advanced security Apple Wallet provides are significant benefits for improving students’ campus life….”

Not only does Marshall now have a distinct technological advantage—which is an excellent way to draw in futurists and the STEM student—but it also can openly declare itself one of the US’ most advanced colleges. It’s not even an advantage readily duplicated; here, the first-mover advantage can be milked for years even if everyone else brought the service on board. After all, Marshall was one of the first. Better yet, it’s also made it a lot easier for students to spend money while on campus above and beyond what they were already spending.

This advance has given Marshall a real leg up in the hotly competitive college field, and hopefully it will be able to make hay while the sun shines. Mobile payments have once again opened up new opportunities, and proven that this market is always one to watch.