April 12, 2012
The Department of CS&IS held its first industry roundtable February 7th, 2011. Representatives from Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), CSE Software Inc./Simformation LLC, Discover Financial, and Country Financial participated as well as approximately thirty students and seven faculty members.
After a short “meet and greet” dinner, the roundtable discussion started with the participants introducing themselves and their respective companies. Dr. Dolins shared an overview of the department’s curriculum and then asked the participants to describe the qualities they are looking for in applicants as well as specific job openings and internships available. Tim Stone of Country Financial said that working in IT is a lot like being a waiter in a restaurant; it is very much service oriented. His advice to students was to learn to accept whatever a customer requests from you and try to meet their needs because if your customers are dissatisfied, they could seek help outside your organization. Other qualities these employers seek in candidates are people, communication, and leadership skills. Students asked a variety of interesting questions like what is the going rate of pay for interns, strategies on how to seek the “dream” job, handling rejection from an employer, etc.
The consensus of the group was that the inaugural roundtable was a success and future roundtable meetings will be planned, possibly in cooperation with the College of Business.
The department would like to thank Crystal Fruit (Discover Financial), Amy Frazier (ADM), Dave Phillips and Tim Stone (Country Financial) and Stacey Burris and Christy Beiermann (CSE Software Inc./Simformation LLC) for sharing their insights about IT careers.