University of California, Merced

Why UC Merced Upgraded from Open Source to Full Service OpenScholar Websites



UC Merced had hundreds of outdated faculty websites running on multiple platforms, including open source OpenScholar, WordPress and Drupal. 

The university has a lean, centralized IT team, that had three reasons for finding a new approach to faculty sites:

  1. They were having trouble keeping up with requests for faculty website upgrades and new websites.
  2. They needed to eliminate security vulnerabilities from running older versions of faculty site software.
  3. They wanted to unify university branding across faculty sites.


Joan Holmquist, the Director, Academic & Emerging Technologies in the Office of IT, chose OpenScholar to consolidate faculty websites onto one Drupal platform. Their consolidation and upgrade followed this easy process:

  • OpenScholar developed three modern website themes consistent with UC Merced’s brand guidelines
  • OpenScholar migrated existing faculty profiles from open source OpenScholar, Wordpress and Drupal sites
  • OpenScholar built new faculty websites that were in the backlog 


Within three months, UC Merced had 133 updated faculty websites that ran on three consistently-branded themes and were managed by OpenScholar.

The IT team took back their time to work on higher profile projects and outsourced faculty site management, support, system administration, the help desk and hosting to OpenScholar.

Communications has seen a significant improvement in faculty sites that now adhere to their style guide and branding specifications.

Faculty are delighted with their modernized and research-centric sites, and fast help desk support from OpenScholar.