Any student taking any class under the Business, Automotive and Manufacturing Division can get free copies of Microsoft software for home use.
Shoreline Community College subscribes to the Microsoft Developers Network Academic Alliance, a service of Microsoft that benefits students taking business-related courses.
A wide range of programs are available, including database, server, project management, and computer programming software, as well as various versions of the Windows operating system, and multilingual user interfaces.
Some of the most popular Microsoft Office programs, such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, are not available through this program.
Students taking any eligible class can e-mail a request to their professor for access to the software. The student will then get an e-mail with a user name and password to use on the MSDN Academic Alliance web site to “shop” for software. They will be given a coupon to print out and take to the Shoreline library, where they can check out the CD-ROM to install on their home computer. Software checks out for three days. Students can also purchase software on the MSDN Academic Alliance website.
Once installed, the software is the student’s to keep for personal use for as long as the student wants it. The only stipulation is that the software cannot be used for commercial purposes.
“It’s especially good for students who want to experiment,” said Phyllis Topham, a professor of Computer Information Systems.
Topham deals directly with MSDN Academic Alliance. She noted that some programs, such as Microsoft Project Management, typically sell for hundreds of dollars.
Students can ask their professors directly if they qualify for free software through the MSDN Program.