MIS @ UT Dallas

The School of Management



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MIS Newsletter: Spring 2011

Welcome! Capture a glimpse of wonderful experiences at the Department of Management Information Systems at The University of Texas at Dallas.

Job Market for IT Professionals Remains Strong

While overall economic conditions are less than favorable, demand for management information systems professionals remains strong and starting salaries are expected to increase 3.4 percent in 2011. UT Dallas MS Information technology and Management graduates are well positioned to take advantage of the opportunities available. Take a look at some of the companies who have hired UT Dallas MIS students in the past 12 months.

Visit Us on Facebook

The Information Systems area has created two new Facebook pages to serve the needs of its stakeholders and provide opportunities for students and alumni to interact with one another. Alumni of the BS in Management Information Systems program are encouraged to visit today so they can interact with students and alumni of the BS in Management Information Systems Program. Students and alumni of the MS in Information Technology and Management program are encouraged to visit us on Facebook as well to connect with others and keep abreast of program happenings. When you visit, please make sure you click the "Like" button to keep up.

IT Trends and Emerging Technologies

The information systems area conducted a survey of its faculty and industry advisory board to identify emerging technologies expected to have the greatest impact on management and operation of organizational information systems.

Based on the survey results, four emerging technologies were identified: cloud computing and virtualization, business intelligence and analytics, social network technology, and mobile computing. The survey participants agreed that these technologies have the potential to significantly affect the design, delivery and use of information systems in organizations.

In this section, we would like to talk briefly about one of the four emerging technologies, cloud computing and virtualization, and some of the steps that the area of information systems is taking in order to provide students with the knowledge, skills, and abilities they need to help organizations leverage these new technologies.

Cloud computing is a mechanism by which shared resources, information and software are provided as requested to computers and other devices. Typically cloud computing providers deliver common business applications online that are accessed from another web service or lightweight client software like a web browser while the software and data are stored on server computers residing in data centers. Cloud computing is gaining popularity because of its notable advantages like convenient access to resources, real-time service provision, reduced operating and maintenance costs, device and location independence.

The UT Dallas School of Management Center for Information Technology and Management has been working on various aspects of cloud computing for the past three years. The center has been working with local employers on major issues surrounding adoption and use of cloud computing and researching specific areas of interest, such as economics, security, privatization, and enterprise applications.

The area of information systems has also developed a new graduate course in cloud computing to provide an introduction on the basics of cloud computing as a major paradigm shift in the design, delivery and use of organizational information systems. The course explores cloud computing from a business perspective and is designed to deliver a holistic and balanced view of the cloud computing business model, required technological expertise, and security issues of cloud computing. Furthermore, the core graduate level information systems course has been redesigned to incorporate cloud computing concepts providing all students with an introduction to this important new concept.

Profs Paper Nominated for Best Paper

Ashbel Smith Professor Sumit Sarkar's paper titled "Data Clustering and Micro-Perturbation for Privacy-Preserving Data Sharing and Analysis" was nominated for best paper at the 2010 International Conference of Information Systems. Along with Xiao-Bai Li from the University of Massachusetts Lowell, Dr. Sarkar developed a novel technique for limiting disclosure of private information in situations involving analysis of aggregate datasets. A full copy of the manuscript may be found online.

A Head of the Games

Focus groups at various University of Texas and other college campuses are now testing Campus Life, an interactive online game created by School of Management faculty member Michael J. Savoie and a design team he assembled.

Dr. Savoie, director of the Center for Information Technology and Management, last year received a $250,000 grant from a University of Texas System program initiative, Transforming Undergraduate Education, to create the game. Intended to help acquaint new students — and their parents — with the culture and realities of college living, it guides them through budgeting, class scheduling, commuting, housing and other choices.

Interested? The test version of the game is accessible at http://citm.utdallas.edu/tue/campuslife.html. Play all the way through, and you will have a chance to take a survey about your game-play experience at the end.

Dr. Savoie and his team have begun work on the second-semester level of the game. He envisions eight semester-levels in the final game when it is complete.

Another game Dr. Savoie and CITM's social outreach program have worked on is Safariville, a 3-D Facebook interactive. Developed in conjunction with My House Ministries, a McKinney, Texas-based nonprofit devoted to helping impoverished widows and orphans in developing countries, the game allows players to develop an African safari lodge. It also offers chances to help a local village and orphans. Play is tied to numerous assistance opportunities with real-world charities. Find it at http://www.facebook.com/safariville.

Info System Expert's Work Gives Dr Pepper a Boost

A School of Management faculty member's work putting together a new business information system for Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc. helped put the Dallas-based beverage maker on this year's InformationWeek list of the top 500 technology innovators.

The annual InformationWeek list, which recognizes America's leading companies utilizing technology innovation to drive business results, ranked Dr Pepper No. 146. The ranking put Dr Pepper ahead of such industry power performers as Verizon Communications Inc., Pfizer Inc., Intel Corp., AT&T Inc. and UPS Inc.

Judd D. Bradbury, who joined the school last summer as a senior lecturer, led a team that spent two years designing and implementing a comprehensive turnaround plan for Dr Pepper bottling division's business information systems platform. The project created a common enterprise information system for all 175 division locations and included sales, finance, materials management, production, distribution, procurement, human resources and warehouse operations.

The School of Management has drawn on Mr. Bradbury's management information system (MIS) expertise to augment the new Bachelor of Science MIS degree program debuting this semester as well as the Master of Science in Information Technology and Management program already in place.

Mr. Bradbury's consulting work spans almost two decades and includes long-term projects for numerous Fortune 500 firms and such corporate heavyweights as Dell, DuPont, Electronic Data Systems, Fossil, Pennzoil and Quaker State, PricewaterhouseCoopers, SAP, Texas Instruments and more.

Mr. Bradbury's forte is in SAP/ERP (enterprise resource planning) information systems implementation.

"I was specifically hired to grow this degree plan — enterprise resource planning systems with a specialty in SAP — which is exactly what we implemented at Dr Pepper and how this is all tied together and why I am here," Mr. Bradbury says. "Our intention is to utilize UT Dallas' resources and my expertise to do similar projects with other companies, and to involve students in the process."

Mr. Bradbury earned a Bachelor of Science degree in logistics from Texas A&M University and a Master of Science degree in management and technology from Purdue University.

IT Student Chapter and Adviser Take Top Honors

The Association of Information Technology Professionals, a worldwide society of IT experts, this year honored the UT Dallas student chapter as best in the six-state Region 3.

Dr. Mark Thouin, faculty adviser for the School of Management-based chapter, said judges were impressed that the organization increased student membership 194 percent last year — from 31 to 91 members. The chapter also hosted a series of notable outside speakers and offered other professional and social events to its undergraduate- and graduate-student members.

Thouin, SOM's director of Management Information Systems program, also received an honor: He was named AITP Region 3 Star Performer of 2010. Officers for the region, which covers Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi, recognized his involvement in growing the student chapter and his work in organizing a student conference last year that drew 350 university students to UT Dallas for information technology seminars and competitions.

Among the reasons that students join AITP is the chance to "learn how to network," Thouin said. "It's difficult to teach in the classroom," he said. He pointed out the connections work both ways: "Outside speakers like to come [to AITP chapter events] because it's good networking for them."

Management information systems graduates typically have no trouble landing a job — even in these shaky economic times — and companies are eager to line up job candidates before they graduate, Thouin said.

Varsha Suman, the incoming UT Dallas AITP president, is an MBA student with big plans for the chapter this spring. "I am expanding my team and recruiting a few new officers to market AITP," she said. "We already started by recruiting a new position, director of social media. The person is responsible [for maximizing the potential of] the Facebook AITP UTD and LinkedIn AITP groups."

Suman also is working on expanding tutoring services for AITP students and possibly opening membership to those in other schools on campus — such as computer science and engineering — who also would be interested in topics covered at AITP meetings.

Both UT Dallas awards were presented this fall at the AITP Region 3 conference at the University of Houston.

Thouin joined the School of Management faculty in 2008 after completing his doctorate at Texas Tech University. "While working on my PhD, I was introduced to some of the challenges facing the healthcare industry and decided to focus on healthcare IT for my dissertation," he said. Previously, he spent about 13 years as an IT consultant supporting a variety of organizations and industries, including the Department of Defense, the Coast Guard, Environmental Protection Agency, Sara Lee Knit Products, Krispy Kreme and several others, in a variety of technical and managerial roles.

Information Systems Subject Matter Experts

UT Dallas Information Systems faculty members regularly speak at area events and seminars to provide subject matter expertise. For example, Dr. Michael Savoie spoke at an information seminar hosted by Frost Insurance on information security and dealing with data breaches and Dr. Mark Thouin was recently on a local radio program discussing mobile computing. UT Dallas IS faculty are world leaders in a number of areas and if you are interested in scheduling a guest speaker for a particular topic, please contact Dr. Mark Thouin, Director of Information Systems Programs at mark.thouin@utdallas.edu.

Prof Adler teaches the online section of MIS Fundamentals (MIS 6204)

This fall the UTD School of Management announced the release of a new online version of MIS 6204 MIS Fundamentals. The core course is required for all MBA students and covers topics such as IT governance, business process management, business intelligence and analytics, and cloud computing. The content of the online course is nearly identical to the content of the classroom-based version of the course with the primary difference being the method of delivery. Online courses provide students with opportunities to interact with other students virtually, a critical component of the educational experience, while also providing the flexibility to continue their education from a distance. Online courses are popular choices for students interning as the flexible schedule of an online course works well with the demands of a full-time internship and allows them to continue working towards their degree.

The UT Dallas area of information systems has embraced distance learning as a way to increase flexibility and choice for students. Online courses for all IT foundation courses have been developed along with a significant number of electives such that students interested students are able to complete the entire MS in Information Technology and Management degree online if they so choose. High quality standards of excellence for online courses are ensured through the application and use of a state of the art methodology for online curriculum design, development, and delivery developed by the school of management. This results in a large number of diverse, cutting edge courses being offered online serving the needs of UT Dallas MS ITM students.

New Course in Customer Relationship Management

This Fall the UTD School of Management has released a new course in Customer Relationship Management. The course is designed to support the mission of educating students on the benefits of using business analytics to support the creation of "customer oriented" business strategy. The CRM course begins with defining a customer vision from metrics in the balanced scorecard and walks the student through the real world activities of strategic CRM, operational CRM, analytical CRM, and collaborative CRM. The course provides a balanced perspective of IT lectures, hands-on CRM exercises in SAP, and business case study analysis on a weekly basis. Students pursuing careers in marketing, general business, and information systems are enjoying the blended content and varied perspectives of the classroom discussion. Swapnil Mehta a new Information Technology Management student commented that he specifically sought out UTD for their new offerings in SAP. He shared his perspective on the CRM course in this way; "The best thing about our class is the variety of students from different backgrounds and fields of study. The class is attended by students from Marketing, ITM, MBA, and experienced business professionals taking the course. The diversity of students in the class provides lots of valuable points of view on the CRM topics." Judd Bradbury the professor of the new course commented "The course is rigorous so I am happy to hear that students are enjoying the course while they are adding value to their career".

New Course in Social Network Technology

To better address the needs of employers and students, the IS area will offer a new course in social network technology open to all undergraduate students in every major. The junior level course is designed for any student who wants to better understand how organizations and individuals leverage social network technology. No pre-requisites are required as the course provides an introduction to social network technology and instructs students on how to apply the latest internet-based technologies in both their personal and academic lives. The course also explores how consumer-oriented businesses can utilize these technologies and emphasizes hands-on, interactive application of various online technologies. The course will be taught by Dr. Michael Savoie beginning in fall 2011.

The Information Systems Area at UT Dallas Welcomes Two New Faculty

Harpreet Singh intends to combine theories from economics and sociology in researching social networks, electronic word-of-mouth information systems and peer-to-peer lending in online financial markets. He joins The School of Management as assistant professor of management information systems.

Dr. Singh comes to Dallas from the University of Connecticut, where he was a graduate assistant and earned his doctorate degree in business administration-information systems. He was an inductee into the School of Business Hall of Fame at the University of Connecticut. Dr. Singh also received a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from Panjab University Chandigarh in India.

Judd Bradbury brings a keen interest in studying business intelligence and enterprise systems to his new position as senior lecturer in management information systems. He is president of Maverick Consulting and received his Master of Science in Management and Technology degree from Purdue University and his Bachelor of Science in Industrial Distribution degree from Texas A&M University.

Mr. Bradbury will teach a number of enterprise-system related courses, including an introductory course and one in customer relationship management. He continues to serve the City of Dallas as a board member for the Commission on Productivity and Innovation.


Thursday, January 20th
Association of IT Professionals: Guest Speaker John Weston, Microsoft IT Pro Evangelist
Where: SOM Room 1.107
When: Thursday, January 20th from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Wednesday, January 26th
SAP User Group Kickoff Meeting
Where: SOM Room 1.517
When: Wednesday, January 26th from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Monday, February 7
The Sham's Group Internship Program
Where: UTD Career Center
When: Monday, February 7 from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm

Wednesday, February 9
MS In Information Technology Management Online Information Session
Where: Online
When: Wednesday, February 9 from 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm

Thursday, February 10
MIS IT Summer Intern Analyst Info Session
Where: Student Services Building - SSB 3.107
When: Thursday, February 10 from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm

Friday, February 11
An Afternoon with... Jeff Wacker (HP, Future of Technology)
Where: Davis Auditorium, SOM
When: Friday, February 11 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Thursday, February 17
Association of IT Professionals: Guest Speaker Deloitte and Touche
Where: SOM Room 2.117
When: Friday, February 25th from 1:00 – 3:00 pm

Wednesday, March 2
ITM Career Forum
Where: SOM - Executive Education Dining Room
When: Wednesday, March 2 from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Friday, March 11
An Afternoon with... Mike Gfeller (Medical Center of Plano)
Where: Davis Auditorium, SOM
When: Friday, February 11 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Friday, April 8
An Afternoon with... Anita Foster (Red Cross, Application and Ramifications of Technology in the Nonprofit Environment)
Where: Davis Auditorium, SOM
When: Friday, February 11 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Friday, May 13
An Afternoon with... (Jeff Word, SAP, Technology Innovations in Networked Business Processes)
Where: Davis Auditorium, SOM
When: Friday, February 11 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Friday, June 10
An Afternoon with... Sue McMillin(CEO, TG, Technology in Higher Education)
Where: Davis Auditorium, SOM
When: Friday, February 11 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm

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800 West Campbell Rd, SM42, Richardson, Texas 75080