Big Changes for Gustavus Telephone Service Posted on March 17th, 2023 by

Our legacy phone system has served us well over the years, but the pandemic exacerbated certain trends that continue to highlight its limitations. Increasingly, people are turning to text (SMS), chat applications (Google), and social media (Facebook, Snapchat) for communication, and traditional phone systems have been overshadowed. Interest in softphone technology has boomed, and our need for this flexibility has, likewise, become more apparent over time. In addition to the changing ways we communicate with each other, our legacy phone system poses a number of maintenance and security challenges. The College’s telecommunications team has done remarkable work to keep this aging infrastructure running securely and reliably, but it’s time for a more forward thinking approach. 

Starting this month, we will embark on a year-long effort to move the majority of our phone lines to Google Voice. Google Voice offers a number of important advantages, including integration with other campus tools (Gmail, Google Chat, Google Calendar), and softphone features (make/receive calls on your computer, desk phone, or mobile device). Together, they should allow employees and others to stay connected no matter where they happen to be.

While there are a few known issues with Google Voice, we have seen continual improvements over the past year, and we hope that many of the current limitations will be addressed during the rollout. Other cases may require some trial and error to find the next best solution. Our priority will always be to tackle those issues that could potentially impact the security and safety of our community. As a result, some services will still rely on analog lines (blue lights, elevator alarms, etc.) until an adequate alternative solution is available.

We encourage you to reach out to us (Laura McCabe at or 507-933-6261) and share your hopes and concerns related to this transition. Please don’t be afraid to let us know how we can make the move to Google Voice even better. In the meantime, feel free to check out the knowledgebase articles we have for Google Voice:

GTS Knowledge Base

Contact Us

Phone: 507-933-6111
Remote Support:
System Status:

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