JMU CyberCity Program Receives Prestigious Diversity Award

From: Public Affairs

CIS Professor Mike Mitri works with a CyberCity student

Nov. 21, 2008

HARRISONBURG Ė The CyberCity Technology Summer Program at James Madison University received one of four 2008 ABET Presidentís Awards for Diversity from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. The award was presented at the fall 2008 ABET Commission Summit in Louisville, Ky.

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 society. ABET Inc. is the professional accreditation agency that provides leadership and quality assurance in applied science, computing, engineering and technology education. JMUís Computer Information Systems & Management Science program is ABET accredited.

The CyberCity Technology Summer Program at James Madison University was recognized "for the development and operation of a successful hands-on, project-based university campus summer program for under-represented high-school students and their teachers that increases awareness of information technology skills and careers and enhances the students' aspirations for a college education."

Three professors from the CIS & MS program in JMUís College of Business, Thomas Dillon, Harry Reif and Daphyne Saunders Thomas, created CyberCity in 2007. The technology camp teaches students how to use real world tools in an open exploratory environment, to provide high-school students with a look at technology programs at JMU and to allow students to explore advanced technology as a means of solving real-world business and industry problems. Targeted participants include students and teachers from under-represented socio-economic populations across Virginia. The summer program, which has been offered for two summers, is free to participating students and teachers.

The program demonstrates a commitment to diversity and academic excellence by creating a format that encourages targeted high-school students to foster their interest in technology and to simultaneously prepare for successful matriculation from high school to college.

For more information, contact Toni Mehling, communication director in JMUís College of Business, at (540) 568-5169 or mehlintd@jmu.edu, or Bill Wyatt in JMUís Office of Public Affairs at (540) 568-3621 or wyattwj@jmu.edu.

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