Cuesta College students have received many unsolicited emails in their inbox folder on Canvas throughout the beginning of the school year.
The Wellness Central was added to the Canvas dashboard by the Health Center. The Health Center promotes strategies and tools that will be a practical resource and support in the student’s academic process.
“Unfortunately, we have run into some issues with Canvas hubs and one of our online resources ‘Wellness Central’ was affected by this,” the Wellness Central stated on their Canvas front page.
Students were able to send any message, video, or link to the whole student body from their inbox on Canvas. It was an effort to promote health and wellness for Cuesta students.
One message read: “😂 It’s Thursday 👏✌️the start↗️ of a new✅ week📅📆📅Fridays✏️are✏️HARD 👎👏‼️send this↗️▶️▶️to 😂6😂 FRIENDS to make them 💁♀️ have a 💥GOOD💥 Monday. 🙅♀️🙅♀️DON’T BREAK ✂️THE CHAIN🙅♀️🙅♀️ or else 😝😝you’ll have a BAD 😡Tuesday. ⏩⏩⏩GO⏪⏪⏪.”
Another student sent out a message saying: “Please stop sending EVERYONE random videos and music files. This is getting out of hand. Canvas is NOT a social media platform. If you need real help then ask but stop using this as social media. Please.”
According to Keith Stearns, Executive Director of Information Technology at Cuesta College, the purpose of giving students the opportunity to send each other messages to the whole body is a result of the coronavirus pandemic. New courses for all students have been developed to better support the college community remotely.
“Courses with this many students never existed before, so the ability to email all students was not previously available,” Stearns said.
Cuesta College students previously were only able to email their professors and classmates from their inbox pertaining to their specific courses. Students even raised concerns about the spam being malware and asked IT to remove the ability to contact the entire student body.
“No harmful software was detected in the messages,” Stearns said. “That many unsolicited emails are considered spam. There were concerns those emails could become malicious.”
The feature has now been removed from the Canvas portal. Students should no longer be receiving unprompted emails.