I'm not sure how many of you are aware of this at this point, but soon--possibly as soon as later this month, but it's looking like September instead--the VCCS will be transitioning from our current student email provider to Google Apps for Education. This will be an email change, but more importantly, it will give students (and faculty!) access to a range of collaborative tools we can use in teaching or other aspects of our work.
Faculty and staff all have test accounts so you can check it out now if you'd like to start exploring and thinking about what you might want to use for yourself, for student group work, or whatever. Visit http://mail.gtest.vccs.edu/ and use your normal My VCCS username and password to log in (that's the same one you use to log into PeopleSoft or BB).
The basic email account will look like a gmail account, so if you are familiar with that, you will be familiar already with the overall environment. But you'll also see chat on the left (like in a regular gmail account, as well), and the major new features linked on the very top left (a calendar feature; document working/collaborating tools including word processing, spreadsheets, and presentation tools; and a tool for creating individual or shared websites).
Check it out and let me know what you think!