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New Technology Alumni Group Website Goes Live

Please visit the newly redesigned Technology Alumni Group (TAG) website at www.jmu.edu/tag.

CIS Program Ranked 9th Nationally for 2012 by Bloomberg Business Week

JMU's Computer Information Systems (CIS) program  was recently ranked 9th among all Information Systems programs by Business Week. This distinction places JMU's CIS program at the top in the state of Virginia. In addition, JMU ranked 18th for quantitative methods, which is the discipine that our Business Analytics minor focuses on. 

Department Gets New Name

The Department of Computer Information Systems and Management Science (CIS&MS) was recently renamed  as the department of Computer Information Systems and Business Analytics (CIS&BSAN). 

This change reflects the transformation of the old Management Science minor into a new Business Analytics minor. Interim CIS Department Head Dr. Mike Mitri says, “The name was changed to reflect the fact that the discipline is evolving. Business analytics has emerged from a combination of disciplines including management science, operations research, and artificial intelligence. With the advent of business intelligence, 'business analytics’ became a more current and relevant term for defining our curriculum than 'management science.' "

The Business Analytics minor now includes new components in data mining and business process modeling, which makes it broader in scope than a management science minor. There are also more cross disciplinary opportunities under this new model, with courses from CIS, Finance, and Economics majors satisfying BSAN credit requirements. 

The revised minor was developed primarily by the senior management science faculty, involving Susan Palocsay, Scott Stevens, and  Ina Markham. The change underwent a long approval process through both the College of Business and the university as a whole.  

Many thanks to everyone who helped with this process.

2012 AITP National Collegiate Competition, March 29-31, in San Antonio, Texas

Sixteen CIS majors and one ISAT major (CIS minor) attended the NCC in San Antonio, Texas. Attending were Christina Hansbrough, Kevin Davis, Lauren Danker, Michael Fakhari, Nick Kerschl, Stacey Walker, Evan Wiley, Cabell Spicer, Sean Britt, Matt Acors, Nick DeMaggio, Amy Hui, Pam Norkus, Tasya Robbins, Sarah Axelson, and Lindsay Holt. The AITP Student Chapter team was accompanied by Dr. Susan Kruck and Prof. Carey Cole. The James Madison University Student Chapter was acknowledged as the largest student chapter in the U.S. and was recognized as a Runner Up in “Highest Level of Overall Conference Support.”


Notable awards won at the NCC by JMU included 1st place in the AITP Student Chapter Banner Contest, an honorable mention in the Graphics Communication Contest won by team members Sean Britt and Nick Kerschl and an honorable mention in the Systems Analysis and Design Contest by team members Amy Hui and Tasya Robbins.

DRC/HPTi Consulting Challenge for Spring 2012

On April 14th, 2012, JMU hosted the second annual HPTi (DRC) Consulting Challenge. Thirty-three students competed on eleven teams. The consultants from HPTi/DRC created a consulting simulation using video, Java code, and simulated websites. All participating teams were enrolled in a series of activities that incorporated a “Zombie Land” theme allowing them to use their consulting skills to analyze, problem solve, and develop creative solutions.

HPTi/DRC sent eight employees, five of whom were COB alums, to help out with and judge the three-hour long consulting challenge.

Congratulations to Team Pike, composed of CIS students Michael Kotarski, Michael Schaffer, and Ryan Moore, who won first place and took home $600. Team Showker Consulting, CIS students Michelle Isabelle, Jordan Molnar, and Stephanie Gast, won second place and took home $375. Team PWP, CIS students Hoon Patterson, Andrew Piemonte, and Kaleb Woudeneh, won third place and took home $225.

Deloitte Consulting Case Competition for Fall 2011

On October 3, 2011, representatives from Deloitte Consulting kicked off the first Deloitte Consulting Case Competition hosted by the Computer Information Systems faculty at James Madison University. For the next two weeks, twenty-one students divided into seven teams analyzed a real-world case and then presented their consulting solutions on October 18. During the two week time period, each 3-member team had a Deloitte consultant acting as a mentor as they developed their solution. A three-evaluator panel of senior Deloitte consultants judged the written reports and oral presentations.

The team finishing in First Place was Ryan Mancuso, Kim Weinberg, and Arun Sundaram. The Second Place team was Ethan Cammer, Chris Bell, and Stewart Boyd. And finishing in Third Place was Stephen Gianfortoni, Michelle Isabelle, and Stephanie Gast. All three winning team member received Visa Gift Card.

CIS/MS faculty members Tom Dillon and Mike Mitri were the on-campus organizers. Deloitte consultants Charlie Inman, Sasa Eric, Tyler Martin, and Jeanie Darlington lead the case competition organizers at Deloitte



Booz Allen Hamilton Offers Mentorships, Internships to CoB Students

  A mentorship program with Booz Allen Hamilton was developed in the spring of 2011.  (Link to PP Presentation).  This semester, 20 students were selected to participate in the program; they will work with their mentors on items such as resume building, developing a professional elevator pitch, and interviewing skills. 

  On Oct. 18, JMU grads Carl Hurlebaus and Osama Malik visited several
  CIS classes to share workplace experiences with them, as well as
  strengthen the Booz Allen Hamilton/JMU mentorship program.

In the classroom, both Osama and Carl focused on bringing relevance to course material and providing real world advice in terms of interviewing and professional networking strategies.  Both speakers emphasized the importance of developing and improving soft skills, including strong emotional intelligence, interpersonal communication, problem solving, decision-making and judgment, learning agility, and collaborative skills.  

Thanks to the Booz Allen Hamilton mentorship program, two CIS majors, Matt Golob and Sarah Johnson, were selected to intern at Booz Allen Hamilton over the past summer.  Matt and Sarah, the first Booz Allen Hamilton interns, were very successful; they won the annual Booz Allen Hamilton internship contest.  Twelve teams participated, including Ivy League and graduate students.  As a result of their successful internship, both Sarah and Matt have an exciting job awaiting them at Booz Allen Hamilton when they graduate this year.

Any students (especially sophomores and juniors) who are interested in participating in next semester’s Booz Allen Hamilton/JMU mentorship program should contact Dr. Jeffrey May (mayjl@jmu.edu) for more information.


An Outstanding AITP Chapter

 This summer the JMU AITP Student Chapter received one of three national SCOPA awards. The Student Chapter Outstanding Performance Award (SCOPA) is given each year to the AITP Student Chapter that excels in the following five chapter activity categories: Education, Membership, Public Relations, Meetings and Association Participation.

The SCOPA award indicates the student chapter is providing a variety of outstanding opportunities to and for its members. The JMU Student Chapter of AITP successfully provided the following: an overall increase in membership headcount, presentation of educational programs, publication of a Chapter Newsletter, monthly activity reports, meeting regularity and actively in the community, and participation in the National Collegiate Conferences. AITP chapter member Stacey Walker lead the SCOPA award committee to success.  

In addition to SCOPA recognition, the JMU AITP Student Chapter is currently the largest student chapter in the U.S.A.

CIS Program Reaccredited by ABET

ABETThe CIS Program earned official accreditation from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) in summer of 2011 This is the second time CIS has earned recognition from ABET’s Computing Accreditation Commission (CAC) as an accredited Information Systems program, specifically for the BBA degree in CIS.  More information about ABET, its accreditation process, and the list of accredited programs and their institutions can be found at www.abet.org.

Accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET, 111 Market Place, Suite 1050, Baltimore, MD 21202-4012, telephone: (410) 347-7700.

Cole, Kruck and Lending Receive COB Faculty Awards

COB LogoOn August 26, 2011, Robert Reid, Dean of the JMU College of Business, recognized three members of the Department of CIS & MS with outstanding achievement awards.  Mr. Carey Cole received the 2011 Kenneth R. Bartee Award for Teaching Innovation. Through Carey's efforts the College of Business is one of a handful of schools where every business student receives hands-on experience in collaboration software using MS SharePoint. Carey has worked with leaders at Pearson/Prentice-Hall and Microsoft to develop a hosted MS SharePoint solution that is used by over 30 universities worldwide and a text entitled “SharePoint for Students” published by Pearson/Prentice-Hall.   Dr. Susan Kruck received the Accenture Professional Service Award for her role as editor for the Journal of Information Systems Education (JISE). Since assuming duties as JISE editor in 2010, Dr. Kruck has overseen the review of 147 submissions – an 18% increase in one year, seen the average days under review improve to 46, and has established a Senior Editorial Board of international leaders in IS education that assists with initial and final reviews. Dr. Diane Lending received the Best Educational Paper Award.   The paper entitled "Using a Wiki to Collaborate on a Study Guide" was published in the Journal of Information Systems Education in 2010. Dr. Lending argued that to truly understand collaboration, students must learn more than what collaboration is, they must see it work on a task that is meaningful to the student.

Kathy Warden (JMU CIS '92) Appointed Northrop Grumman VP/GM Cyber Intelligence Division

Kathy WardenNorthrop Grumman has named Kathy Warden vice president and general manager of its Cyber Intelligence Division, one of five divisions within the company's Information Systems sector. The sector recently created the Cyber Intelligence Division to increase the company's focus and agility in responding to the nation's cybersecurity needs within the intelligence communities.

Among her senior roles at Northrop Grumman, Warden has led the intelligence business in cyber, special access and airborne intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR). Before joining the company in 2008, she was the senior vice president of a business unit supporting a secure space program and served in other executive roles supporting the intelligence community. Warden holds a bachelor's degree in computer information systems from James Madison University. The entire report can be found at the Space Daily.

HPTi Consulting Challenge at JMU on April 9, 2011

The ability for teams to identify client needs and develop effective solutions is at the heart of the consulting profession.  JMU computer information systems (CIS) students will have the opportunity to display those skills in a competition sponsored by High Performance Technologies Inc. (HPTi) and the Department of Computer Information Systems & Management Science on April 9, 2011. 

The competition will feature $1,200 in prize money to be distributed among the top three winning teams. No preparation or reference materials are needed for the competition. Food will be provided and winners will be announced at the conclusion of the event.  Students will be able to register on the HPTi Consulting Challenge web site beginning March 19, 2011.

The HPTi Consulting Challenge is being led by HPTi consultant Matt Perticone (JMU '04) and CIS professors Tom Dillon and Chen Guo.     

Exceptional Careers in Computer Information Systems!

Star PowerComputer Information Systems is one of the top majors on the James Madison University campus for career potential, job placement and average starting salary. In Spring 2010, starting salaries for CIS graduates averaged $60,000. CIS jobs are among the most lucrative degrees for college grads. A CIS degree often leads to a wide variety of exciting career opportunities.  A recent report by the U.S. Department of Labor indicates that the occupational outlook for computer and information managers is "expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations" and "job prospects should be excellent".  In 2010 over twenty-eight different firms were on-campus recruiting students majoring in CIS at James Madison University.

Over $55,000 Raised to Support CIS Student Scholarships

Glenn Smith and Chris ReillyThe 2009/2010 CIS fund-raising initiative raised over $55,000 in cash and pledges for endowed scholarships to honor Professors Glenn Smith and Don Musselman.  Because of strong support we have exceeded our goal by more than $5,000.   This permanent gift to JMU for financially needy CIS majors honors their 66 years of combined service to the College of Business. More than 140 JMU alumni and friends, many former students of Glenn and Don, and companies who support the CIS program contributed to the campaign and helped insure that the campaign would be a success.  

Ashleigh Kenion and Don MusselmanOn April 14, 2010, CGI and the College of Business hosted a donor reception at the International Country Club in Fairfax, Virginia to honor Don Musselman and Glenn Smith.  “It’s an honor to be able to recognize these two outstanding professors by giving them a living legacy", said Susie Bonvouloir (CIS ‘83) organizer of the reception and chair of the finance committee of the CIS & MS Executive Advisory Board.  “Through this program, they will continue to make an impact on the CIS program at JMU for many, many years to come. ”

CIS Students win National AITP Competition

JMU AITP TeamSix hundred and seventy-four (674) students representing sixty-nine (69) colleges and universities were in attendance at the AITP 15th Annual National Collegiate Conference held March 25-28, 2010 in St. Louis, Missouri. A team of Computer Information Systems (CIS) students from James Madison University emerged victorious in a nationwide Java programming competition. Taylor Callsen and Tyler Martin finished first in the nation against twenty-three teams (23) to win the Java Developer Contest. In addition, to first place, Taylor Callsen received an honorable mention (top six) in the “PC Troubleshooting” Competition.

JMU was represented by a team of eight students (Isha Arora, Eryn Burns, Taylor Callsen, Christina Hansbrough, Dae Kim, Tyler Martin, Eileen Proto and Ko San Kim) who participated in the following events: PC Troubleshooting, Systems Analysis and Design, Database Programming, Network Design, and Java Programming. The AITP student team was accompanied by Dr. Susan Kruck, Professor of Computer Information Systems. The 2010 JMU AITP student team was sponsored by gifts from Deloitte, HPTI, KPMG and Protiviti.

Professor Susan Kruck named Editor for Journal of IS Education

JISE logoDr. Susan Kruck was selected as the new editor for the Journal of Information Systems Education (JISE).  Kruck was selected for the JISE editorship by the Education Special Interest Group (EDSIG) of the Association of Information Technology Professionals (AITP) board after a lengthy search process. “Professor Kruck brings to the editorship a wealth of experience and scholarship in the fields of information systems and education,"says Rick Mathieu, head of the Department of Computer Information Systems & Management Science. JISE was established in 1989 and is the premier information systems educational journal. JISE, an academic and peer reviewed journal focuses on a variety of technology in education topics:teaching tips; innovative classroom practices; IS curriculum issues; research in IS education; cases for use in an IS classroom; pedagogy in teaching IS subjects; teaching assessment; industry relations; or other related topics in IS education.

CIS Students Win in Freddie Mac "Battle of the Builds"

Battle of the BuildsCongratulations to the Fall 2009 Battle of the Builds Competition winners. 1st place: Team Bridgeforth Taylor Callsen(CIS) Andrew Kelly (ECON & Finance) Daniel Lacasse (CIS) Zachary Schultz (CIS & Management) Ryan Brady (CIS & Finance) 2nd Place: Team: Can't Break This! Tyler Martin (CIS) Isha Arora (CIS) Justin Carter (CIS) Brandon Bundoc (CIS) Carrie Mulford (CIS) Brittany Hafner (Marketing). On September 23, Freddie Mac presented the fourth annual Battle of the Builds competition. The competition is part of an initiative by Freddie Mac to build stronger relations with the JMU community. By working in teams to create the LEGO structures, students develop their team-building and critical thinking skills. In addition, the competition gives students the chance to network with alumni and Freddie Mac professionals.

Busing, Pal and Reif Receive COB Faculty Awards

On August 21, 2009, Robert Reid, Dean of the JMU College of Business, recognized three members of the Department of CIS & MS with outstanding achievement awards. Dr. Raktim Pal received the 2009 COB Publication Award for Best Practitioner Publication for his paper “Role of Pilot Study in Assessing Viability of New Technology Projects: The Case of RFID in Parking Operations” published in the Communications of the Association for Information Systems (CAIS) in 2008 (with Sengupta, A., and Bose, I.).  Dr. Raktim Pal and Dr. Michael Busing received the 2009 COB Publication Award for Best Educational Publication for their paper “Teaching Operations Management in an Integrated Format: Student Perception and Faculty Experience” published in International Journal of Production Economics (IJPE) in 2008.  Dr. Harry Reif received the 2009 Kenneth R. Bartee Award for Teaching Innovation. Dr. Reif worked with a senior leadership team from ManTech International Corp. to introduce a new type of student-based research project within CIS/CS 320 (Computing and Telecommunications Networks). CIS students successfully presented their results to an executive team from ManTech in the following technical areas:(1) Media Exploitation, (2) A-Space, (3) RFID, (4) Second Life, (5) Force Protection, and (6) IPv6 technologies.

CIS Awards Executive Advisory Board Scholarships

James Madison University’s (JMU) Department of Computer Information Systems & Management Science (CIS & MS) awarded CIS & MS Executive Advisory Board Scholarships to two graduating high school seniors who will enroll at JMU in fall 2009. Rachel Hatanaka of Acton, MA and Jessica Romanelli of Downingtown, Pa were each awarded the CIS Executive Advisory Board Scholarship. The $1,500 award goes to incoming first year students who display academic achievement, leadership and a commitment towards pursuing a career related to business and computing. These scholarships are competitive and merit-based. Members of the CIS & MS Executive Advisory Board are business and government IT leaders whom provide counsel to the CIS & MS faculty on a wide range of issues.

Mitri wins SVTC Innovative Technology Award

Mitri AwardCIS professor Dr. Mike Mitri won the Innovative Technology Award at the 2009 Shenandoah Valley Technology Council's Tech Nite awards banquet on April 16, 2009. The award was granted for Mitri's development of LFSentinel ©, a business intelligence (BI) tool that helps developers, testers, and coordinators understand, analyze, and test IBM mainframe legacy-based systems. LFSentinel is a web application that applies artificial intelligence techniques, including heuristic-driven search algorithms to provide profiling and data flow analysis, and produces a number of views including graphical trees, flowcharts, and statistical summaries, thereby producing real-time documentation of large and complex mainframe systems. Mitri developed this software with his colleague Abie Tannir of Legacy Forward, Inc. More details of this tool can be seen at http://legacyforward.com.

JMU CIS Program - Top 10 in the Nation!

techrepublic logoTechRepublic, an online trade publication and social community for IT professionals owned by CBS Interactive, selected James Madison University's undergraduate Computer Information Systems program as one of the Top Ten Undergraduate Information Technology programs in the United States. The criteria used by TechRepublic included curriculum, cost value analysis, student/faculty ratio, percentage of faculty with Ph.D., placement, internships, computer labs and overall strength of program.

Other schools in the top 10 include: Brigham Young University, Carnegie Mellon, MIT, Penn State University, Temple, University of Arizona, University of Illinois, University of Maryland and Virginia Tech.  Click here for the full TechRepublic report.

CyberCity Wins the ABET President's Award for Diversity

CyberCity logoThe CyberCity Technology Summer Program at James Madison University was awarded the 2008 ABET President's Award for Diversity.  CyberCity, developed by CIS faculty members Dr. Tom Dillon and Dr. Harry Reif together with Business Law faculty member Dr. Daphyne Thomas, was presented the award  for "the development and operation of a successful hands-on, project-based university campus summer program for underrepresented high school students and their teachers that increases awareness of information technology skills and careers and enhances the students' aspirations for a college education." The ABET President’s Award for Diversity is presented to recognize U.S.-based educational units, individuals, associations, and firms for extraordinary success in achieving diversity and inclusiveness or for facilitating diversity and inclusiveness in the technological segments of our society.

Tignor Named Top Infosec Executive 

TignorChris Tignor ('92, computer information systems) received the ISE Executive of the Year Award in the Commercial category. Tignor is vice president and chief information security officer at Capital One. According to a press release published by Executive Alliance, Tignor was selected for his integrated, but separate approach to security and compliance, his technical and people skills, and business savvy in communicating the risks and returns of his work to senior management.

"My interest in information security started in my junior year at JMU in the CIS Information Security course. The broad business knowledge I acquired with my College of Business core courses allowed me to bridge the "great divide" that often exists between information technology and non-information technology areas," Tignor said.  Chris is connected to JMU's College of Business as a member of the Computer Information Systems & Business Analytics Executive Advisory Board.

JMU CIS Program Highlighted by Sloan Institute

James Madison University's CIS program was featured as one of 21 ABET accredited Information Systems programs in an "Information Systems Overview" from the Sloan Career Cornerstone Center. As part of the resource center, resources have been created to promote a Career in Information Systems.