This is my baby. I currently work as a developer for the university. A couple of years ago we wanted a way to provide students and faculty with their own web sites so I built a system which allowed even an inexperienced user to deploy their own WordPress site. The latest version is built on the CodeIgniter framework and the servers run a custom version of PHP with patches I’ve personally added to the source code. After a couple years and me writing thousands of lines of code, this project has grown delightfully large. There are about half a dozen servers running Apache to host the Expressions web app. There are load balancers, multiple MySQL database servers, and all the authentication for the WordPress instances is tied together though a CAS server (single sign on solution which hooks into the university’s LDAP system) via a plugin I wrote.
Over 900 individuals (students and faculty) are running their personal blogs and websites on Expressions. There is also a pro version of Expressions where we host more visible websites such as imaginingamerica.org, orangetv.syr.edu, and many more.
You can visit Expressions here https://expressions.syr.edu/ and browse some of the existing sites we host. If you’re a member of SU, feel free to sign up and make your own!