Office Technology Basics

In this article:  Logon, Browsers, Email, Printers, Save-as, 

Welcome to your Skagit Valley College office

SVC employees get a computer and phone in their offices.  This article outlines a few basic facts about using your computer. 

Log on credentials

Setup your password at the following link:
You will need to know 3 things to set a password:

  1. Your SID
  2. Your Employee Pin (Sent out by HR to you residence.)
    To request your PIN, call Human Resourses at 360-416-7794.
  3. Last 4 numbers of your Social Security number


Computers view and search the Internet with a Browser.  

  • Microsoft Explorer is recommended for College administrative databases hosted by the State Board.  
  • Google Chome is recommended for Canvas, but will not work for State Board databases.
  • Microsoft Edge, Firefox, and other Browsers are not recommended. 

Email (

Employees of the College get a "" email address. "" email is available from Office 365.  To access Office 365 email open a web browser and go to . Use your entire email address: and your password (see above.)

Follow the prompts to access Microsoft Outlook as well as the entire Microsoft Office Suite.
Additional information is avialable at, if prompted, login with e-mail and password.  Note:  your account is protected with two-factor authentication.

As a public employee, your email is a public record and is not private. Do not write anything inappropriate for all to see.

You should have and use a private email address for all non-work conversations.  

  • Don’t let work colleagues or students send work email to your personal accounts.  
  • Don’t let friends send personal email to your work account.
  • Don't use your work email for Facebook or other personal accounts.

Email (

Students get a "" email address.  Employees can request a "" email.  "" email is available from Google Gmail.  To access Gmail open a web browser and go to 


Typically, your computer uses a printer shared with other offices near you.  However, you should avoid printing.

  1. Many offices have moved to electronic signatures and our dependence on printed materials has dropped off considerably.  Help maintain this environmentally beneficial momentum. Before you print, try to find a more sustainable solution to your problem. If your office needs to move to electronic signatures or find a digital solution to printing, please make a request to the IT Helpdesk and IT will evaluate and support. 
  2. If you need to print, use one of the Ricoh multi-function devices (MFP) located in many places across the district.  If you are not set-up to use one of these printers, contact the IT Helpdesk to get access.  
  3. If a Ricoh MFP will not work for your needs, contact the Business Office to contract with an outside vendor.  All printing jobs over 100 pages need to go through a competitive solicitation process. If you require printing solicitation services, please submit the following information to Rebecca Wheeler ( at the Business Office ):
    • A signed purchase requisition
    • Specifications or a scope of work for the required services
    • A proof (copy) of the item(s) you would like produced
    • Please plan ahead. This new process will extend the period of time that it takes to get the printed materials that are needed.

Where to save your files

Always save your work.  But where? 

Documents, spreadsheets, PowerPoints, photos and other computer files can be saved in several places depending on your needs.  Do not store personal files on your work computer.  All files on all SVC owned devices are state property and can be searched for public record requests.
(This information is for PCs; if you have a Mac please contact the HelpDesk)


  • Documents.  For most work "Documents" is the best place to save.  This folder is continuously mirrored onto a storage server in our data center and is available on any MV computer at the Mount Vernon and Whidbey Island Campus.  Often, we can restore files you delete from Documents.
  • The U:Drive.  For files that need to be viewed or stored for others, use your shared folders on the U: Drive. Open File Explorer (looks like a file folder), expand 'This PC' and click on Department Files (U:).  These folders are on a storage server in our data center and available on any MV computer at the Mount Vernon and Whidbey Island Campus. We can often restore files you delete from the U:Drive.
  • One Drive.  For files to use from off-campus, use OneDrive.  One Drive is available from O365 apps, and/or from the desktop client.  To use the desktop client, click on its icon in the lower right corner of your system tray or from the programs menu.  Although OneDrive files are protected from power and network failures, we cannot restore files deleted from your OneDrive.
  • Desktop.  For temporary work, use your Desktop.  Documents stored on the Windows Desktop are not backed up, cannot be recovered, and maybe lost during a computer failure.

Not Recommended

  • Downloads.  The Download folder is a temporary location and not safe storage.  If a file is important to you, move it to your Documents or the U:Drive.
  • Recycle Bin.  Putting files into the Recycle Bin is the same as deleting.  It is useful only to recover files previously deleted.  The Recycle Bin is sometimes emptied without your knowledge.
  • C:Drive. Local hard drives and folders you create there are not safe storage.  If a file is important to you, move it to your Documents or the U:Drive. .
  • External hard drives.  External hard drives are not approved for official work.  If you need a storage solution in addition to the above options, please contact the IT Helpdesk.
  • Thumb drives.  USB or Thumb drives are not approved and are easily susceptible to viruses and malware.  If you need a storage solution in addition to the above options, please contact the IT Helpdesk.

Further Information

If you need assistance with this topic, please call the I.T. Helpdesk at 360-416-7766. 

For general comments on this knowledge-base write to Andy Heiser at

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