COVID-19 Adjustments

The program was designed to provide full time faculty and staff with one computer only, a Windows or Apple laptop. Desktops were to be replaced by the laptop according to the age of the computer. The laptop program will be funded with university capital funds. Starting this upcoming fiscal year, we will begin the program with these changes:

First consideration for a laptop from this program will be for full time faculty and staff who are:

  1. Using personal computing equipment to accomplish New School work because they do not have an assigned university-owned laptop.
  2. Struggling to do their work remotely because the laptop they have is outdated or does not have needed functionality.

For the above scenarios, IT Central will consult with full time faculty and staff, or departmental liaison. The consultation will provide an opportunity to determine which of the following options will best meet the needs of each member:

  1. If either of the standard laptops will meet the requirements of their responsibilities.
  2. If they have a high powered desktop at the office, determining whether they will be able to remote into this desktop seamlessly via the standard laptop.
  3. If it would be preferable to use a desktop computer from their office at home.

The University has centralized the purchase of computers for all administrative and academic units in accordance with a 4/5-year computer replacement policy, called the Laptop Choice program. This program provides full-time faculty and staff with a Windows or Apple-based laptop, as a replacement to the currently assigned device. 

This policy applies to all New School-purchased faculty and staff-assigned laptops, regardless of dollar value, with the exception of grant or research-funded devices. A “computer” in the context of this policy is defined to be a Windows or Mac laptop and does not include tablet devices, monitors, printers or other peripherals. 


  1. The Laptop Choice program will replace aging employee computer assets with a University-standard laptop.
  2. The program is funded as part of the university's annual capital budget.
  3. This program will refresh one assigned computer per full-time staff and faculty employees, every four years for a Windows-based laptop and every five years for a Mac-based laptop.
    1. Secondary computers will not be covered under this program.
    2. Computers for part-time faculty will not be covered under this program.
    3. Computers for use in university learning spaces (labs, classrooms, etc.) will not be covered under this program.
  4. The standard computer for staff and faculty will be a Windows or Apple-based laptop. Any requests for replacement computers that do not fall within the standard configuration will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
    1. The employee may choose the platform (PC or Mac). IT Central will provide a recommendation based on each faculty or staff member’s needs. 
    2. Other requests for computers outside of the designated standards must be accompanied by a rationale explaining what academic or business activities necessitate a different computer.
      • The Laptop Choice program will cover the expense of the computer up to the maximum for the highest standard based on the specific use case. Any remaining funding must be provided by the department. 
    3. Requests for desktop computers, whether Windows or Apple, will be evaluated as non-standard requests and will also be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  5. Computers replaced via the Laptop Choice program will be set up by IT Central with our standard configuration and suite of software 
    1. Specialized software not included in the standard configuration will be purchased by the requesting department. This information should be provided to IT Central prior to ordering the laptop to ensure compatibility. Any departmentally-purchased software from the previous computer to be installed on the new laptop will require associated licensing information.
    2. The assignment of computers is done by position. When a new staff member fills a vacant role (aside from newly-created positions), they are expected to use the computer previously associated with that position. New incoming full time faculty members may choose a new laptop when they begin employment.
  6. Computers replaced through the Laptop Choice program will be fully supported by IT Central -  including software and hardware repairs - throughout the 4 or 5-year life cycle of the device.
    1. University-issued computers have a three-year warranty. Departments are not charged for repairs to equipment under warranty. If the equipment is no longer covered or if there is a deductible associated with the repair within the warranty period (accidental damage) then the department must pay for the repair. Users with non-New School approved manufactures and/or models will have to contact either the manufacturer or the vendor who sold the equipment to obtain hardware replacement services directly.
  7. Approximately two months prior IT Central will send each employee and their supervisor a notice that they are eligible for a computer replacement. IT will work with the department to answer any questions, as well as schedule and plan the replacement(s). [COVID UPDATE] Timeframe may be adjusted depending on program needs during the current health pandemic.
  8. Program details are coordinated with the individual and IT Central. Every effort will be made to provide a flexible installation schedule that causes minimal workflow interruption.
  9. Laptops and other computers purchased by faculty members as part of a research and/or grant fund are independent of this program (though such purchases must still be coordinated by IT Central).
  10. The computer being replaced MUST be returned to IT Central when the lifecycle is complete. This is to eliminate possible data breaches, the security risk of having these devices on the New School network, and to properly condition the computer for re-use or eWaste.  
    1. Any computer equipment that was not distributed as part of the Laptop Choice program is not eligible for purchase by faculty or staff. Please note: current computers (laptops or desktops) are not eligible for buyback. This means no computers will be eligible for buy-back until 2024 or 2025 (PC or Mac respectively) as the first round of laptops purchased as part of the Laptop Choice program come to the end of their New School life-cycle. For more information on this please click here
    2. The faculty or staff member may choose to buy the laptop.  
      • The laptop may be purchased only after it has completed its life cycle of 4 or 5 years (PC or Mac). 
        1. Purchased systems are “as is” with no warranty.
        2. University-licensed software or operating systems will be removed from the system.
          • Operating system licenses must be purchased separately by the individual.
      • Computers may not be purchased by faculty and staff leaving the university prior to the lifecycle having run its course. 

Notes: Any questions about the above policy or the Laptop Choice process can be directed to IT Central: