Learning experience for students - Now what difference could one possibly want you'd be asking yourself. For starters, here's a list we wish we had when we were students.
Multiple private machines - given the proliferation of networking, computer education cannot be deemed complete without one having gained some degree of familiarity with it. How better to gain that experience than by writing a few client-server applications and testing them out? What if, we could provide student with machines to test and learn all this? Too, expensive right? Wrong! With the technology available today we can do this without having to buy a cart load of additional computers.
Pause/resume/roll-back sessions - The lab class is getting over in 5 minutes, but my experiment is going to take a while longer ... Well, what if we could pause the computer, much like we would a DVD movie while dinner is being served, and resume it at the next class? and do that without interfering with intervening classes?
Collaborate better with staff - Every time we need our teacher to help us out, what if we could seek it without disrupting the whole class? what if we could privately converse/chat with the faculty to resolve doubts while still in class?
Improved access to specialized software - Remember having to wait in line to get access to the printer and how networking solved it? What if we can do that today for access to specialized software that is too expensive for all the labs to own? and yes, do that legally?
Potential for industry interaction - While the objective of an engineering education is to prepare us for the real world out there, today, we don't really see any real interaction between academia and industry in a scalable model, do we? Wouldn't it be nice if we could provide a platform for industry and academia to interact?