If the University does not reimburse you for the expenses for the New Computer, ISP charges or any other expenses that you incurred in connection to your job as a full time professor, then these expenses may be deductible.
However, the IRS tax code will allow these deductions subject to certain conditions. These are that they are considered employee business expenses that are subject to the 2% Adjusted Gross Income limitations and reported on Schedule 2106. This means the aggregate expenses must exceed 2% of your Adjusted gross income in order for them to be deductible on Schedule A.
This means that you have to be itemizing on your tax return in order for these expenses to be deductible on your tax return. So, I would hope that you would qualify to itemize on your tax return and secondly, you have sufficient expenses to exceed the 2% AGI limitations. If you meet both conditions than these expenses would certainly reduce your taxable income and you would gain some tax benefit when you file your 2008 tax return.
With respect to the computer, that you can certainly depreciate the whole computer under code sec 179. Also, you may claim all the expenses that you have mentioned above such as internet access charges, software, cell phone, teleconferences expenses etc. Well, regarding deducting your office at home expenses, if you meet the IRS test for offce at home deduction, that is using the office regularly and exclusively for your business purposes only, you would be able to deduct office at home expenses.
I would caution you to consult your CPA to determine whether or not you meet the home office test, and then you can perhaps consider whether you wish to deduct the office at home expenses that would be pro-rated according to % of home used as an office.