AIS Student Chapter at Utah State University wins Distinguished Chapter Award

By Taylor Strnad, AIS Communication Intern

During the 2019-2020 academic year this chapter held many events that allowed their members to grow professionally and give back to their community. Twice a month, on Tuesdays, the club hosted a speaker related to the field. These speakers were open to the community as well as its members. President Maddy Gardner says that through their speaker series events they provide career acceleration tips.

“These events bring in professionals from different tech companies to talk about a range of topics including how to be successful, how to prepare in school, and how to prepare for internships,” Gardner said. “This initiative allows us to reach all different kinds of students and expand the influence of the AIS chapter at Utah State University.”

Hour of Code is a service project that allows elementary school students to learn how to code. This opportunity was used to introduce and promote the IS field to these students. From now on, this will be a service project every year with the West Side School District in Idaho. This chapter hopes to expand the program into other sounding school districts.

“Our AIS chapter at Utah State University enjoys the opportunity to give back to the community around us, Gardner said. “We’re all so fortunate to live in a close community. We also love the idea of getting younger students and community members involved in USU, business, and information systems. Community service through our club is a great way to get our name out there and promote the many opportunities Utah State has to offer.”

This chapter excelled in the aspects of communications and recruitment. They used social media platforms and their campus resources to engage with potential and current members. One of the main methods of communication is through their AIS chapter’s Canvas Page. Once members sign up, they are automatically enrolled in the club’s Canvas course which makes it easy to access as students already regularly access Canvas for their classes.

Recruitment efforts included University Day on the Quad, Huntsman School Clubs in the Courtyard and Faculty Coordination. Faculty Coordination was the most effective recruiting effort. Members worked with professors in the department, academic advisors and career coaches to find students who would be interested and would benefit from joining their chapter.

You can find more information on USU AIS here: https://huntsman.usu.edu/ais/.

The AIS Student Chapter program promotes the study, application, and advancement of information systems through career enhancement, professional networking, and chapter development. To learn more about the program and to find resources for joining or chartering your own chapter, please visit sc.aisnet.org.

 

University of Illinois AIS Student Chapter wins Outstanding Membership Activities Award

By Taylor Strnad, AIS Communication Intern

AIS has awarded University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign with the Outstanding Membership Activities award for the 2019-2020 academic year. The Outstanding Membership Activities Award recognizes excellence in recruiting members and in offering member services.

During the fall semester chapter members take part in Quad Day and Business Quad Day. These days allowed the student chapter to talk to interested students about information systems and their chapter. Student Chapter President Siddharth Mathur said that their chapter had the most success when events on campus allowed them to advertise and make their organization known.

“These events created a space for students to speak one-on-one with current members of our AIS chapter, and this personal interaction allowed each and every person who came to us to truly understand what they can gain from being a part of the organization,” Mathur. “Through genuine connections within the organization, we are able to thrive and build a better network of individuals specializing in Information Systems.”

Attendance at their Spring 2020 events dropped. However, to combat this the group found new ways to encourage members to keep coming back. According to Mathur, they try to differentiate their workshops as much as they can. While the topics generally remain the same, they like to look at various applications. Recently, they have launched a certification program that allows members to take advantage of the university’s organization-sponsored subscription to DataCamp, he said.

“This platform gives our members the flexibility to learn whatever they want in more detail, while also being able to take advantage of the support network consisting of other members,” Mathur said. “The networking aspect of the organization is something that we like to emphasize, and our members know that the more actively they participate, the better network they are able to build.”

The University of Illinois chapter held professional development events such as Best Interview Practices and Personal Branding (LinkedIn). Mathur said it is important to keep members engaged because through these events they can get to know their members better.

“Through shared experiences we are able to build a more capable body of students studying Information Systems, while also building a stronger network,” Mathur said. “Our activities also allow our members to learn about various aspects of Information Systems, and so by getting a taste for all the different things you can do in the field, our members are better prepared to go out into the workforce and apply their skills effectively.”

To learn more about the University of Illinois chapter, please visit https://www.aisillinois.org/. The AIS Student Chapter program promotes the study, application, and advancement of information systems through career enhancement, professional networking, and chapter development. To learn more about the program and to find resources for joining or chartering your own chapter, please visit sc.aisnet.org.

University of Arkansas’ AIS Student Chapter earns Outstanding Chapter Award

By Taylor Strnad, AIS Communication Intern

The University of Arkansas’ student chapter of AIS has won the Outstanding Chapter Award for the 2019-2020 academic year. This award recognizes deserving chapters that have done well in most of the areas of emphasis: professional development, membership, careers in IS, community service, fundraising, and communications.
This chapter offers a free membership allowing students to attend meetings to learn about information systems. According to President Ashton Isaacson, they use a point system to gauge member participation which allows the chapter to see which members are “active” to qualify for different things like potential scholarships.

“If members achieve 10 points in an academic year, they are classified as active members. We make it easy and fun for members to get points by attending our kick-off meeting, skill workshops, and company nights,” Isaacson said. “I believe our members enjoy learning new skills and getting insight into the information systems field by attending our meetings. We’re also very fortunate to have companies like ConocoPhillips and Phillip66 sponsor scholarship awards to high-achieving members.”

During the 2019-2020 academic year, this chapter held various events including the Power Bi Workshop, which was co-led by the Walmart Analytics Team, she said.

“The Walmart team was very insightful and offered our members the opportunity to learn about data analytic type roles,” Isaacson said. “Everyone at the meeting was very excited to have Walmart Data Analysts teach them new skills. I really believe that [the chapter] provides career-minded students the invaluable opportunity to network with different companies.”

The Walmart workshop included the basics of Microsoft Power Bi and allowed students to get the chance to learn about a program that is often used in industry. Like Walmart Analytics helped this chapter use programs, this student chapter held skill development workshops that allowed the community to learn how to use technology like MSSQL, Tableau, PowerBI proficiently.
This chapter worked hard to engage its members through various workshops and events. They provided opportunities for networking and jobs and gave back to their community through free workshops for anyone to attend. They encourage anyone and everyone to come and learn more about information systems. To learn more about the AIS Student Chapter at the University of Arkansas, please visit http://ualrpowerteam.azurewebsites.net

The AIS Student Chapter program promotes the study, application, and advancement of information systems through career enhancement, professional networking, and chapter development. To learn more about the program and to find resources for joining or chartering your own chapter, please visit sc.aisnet.org.

AIS Student Chapter at Clemson University earns Outstanding Membership Activities and Outstanding Communications awards

By Taylor Strnad, AIS Communication Intern

Orange Clemson AIS globe logo

Clemson University’s AIS Student Chapter has earned both the Outstanding Membership Activities and Outstanding Communications awards for the 2019-2020 academic year. The outstanding membership activities award is given to a student chapter for excellence in recruiting members and in offering member services. The outstanding communications award recognizes chapters for excellence in communicating with their stakeholders using websites, meetings, email, and other media.

This chapter had strong recruiting efforts including their very successful campus organization fairs. The fairs are held multiple times throughout the year to allow student organizations to recruit new members.

The Clemson chapter had two types of meetings this year, core membership meetings and Tech Talks. These talks are open to all majors and all students on campus regardless of their involvement with the chapter. Some of the guest speakers for the Tech Talks series were ScanSource, Sealed Air and BlueCross BlueShield.

Chapter President Mark Trotter said the biggest takeaway from the talks are being able to hear directly from a professional in the career field. He said, for him personally, he has been able to develop his professional skills by communicating with the companies that speak at Tech Talks.

The chapter members have also found success with their communication efforts. They used flyers posted in campus buildings, GroupMe and emails to promote their chapter’s membership and activities.

“We have found that the best way to communicate to IS students at Clemson is through the MIS professors announcing our events in class,” Trotter said. “This is our most successful method because it’s a direct invitation to our events which is much more personal than getting an email or seeing an Instagram post.”

Something they want to focus on in the future is keeping their social media up to date and work on getting events posted on the social media of the Clemson College of Business and School of Computing Paged, according to Trotter.

The chapter’s mission is to encourage the pursuit of information systems excellence within Clemson University, offer information systems career and technology information to its members, and provide networking opportunities to those interested in information systems. To learn more about the AIS Student Chapter at Clemson University, please visit https://www.instagram.com/clemson_ais/

The AIS Student Chapter program promotes the study, application, and advancement of information systems through career enhancement, professional networking, and chapter development. To learn more about the program and to find resources for joining or chartering your own chapter, please visit sc.aisnet.org.

Temple University named AIS Student Chapter of the Year

 

By Taylor Strnad, AIS Communication Intern

AIS has awarded Temple University’s chapter with the Student Chapter of the Year Award for the 2019-2020 academic year. This is the highest award given to a student chapter demonstrating an exceptional, well-rounded and organized program.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, this student chapter was still able to give back to their local community and continue to learn and grow as young professionals. President of Temple University’s student chapter Kevin Publicover said community service is essential to the chapter.

“As Management Information System majors, we wanted to identify opportunities to use our expertise to impact the community around us,” Publicover said. “Fortunately, we found tremendous partners in Steppingstone Scholars, Youth Volunteer Corps of Greater Philadelphia, and Temple University’s Pan-African Studies Community Education Program who aided [us] in providing a platform to make a difference in the North Philadelphia community. While we have made immense strides in the last year and a half in our community service, we plan to strengthen our current programs and expand to more opportunities in the near future.”Temple Students

One of the chapter’s community service efforts was with Optimize Consulting Group (OCG). This was a new initiative designed to simultaneously provide chapter members the opportunity to develop their consulting skills and give back to nonprofits in the Philadelphia community through pro bono services.

For the chapter’s first project, OCG and the chapter worked with the Youth Volunteer Corps (YVC) of Greater Philadelphia to streamline their donation and data collection processes. Chair of External Events David Saddic said that OCG volunteers worked alongside YVC volunteers to recycle waste at a local riverbank. Working with YVC was truly inspiring, he said.

“OCG worked closely with YVC’s Financial Development Committee to streamline its donor management process,” Saddic said. Our solution included the utility of a fundraising platform with customer resource management, payment processing, and reporting capabilities. This tool not only improved data collection and outreach processes but also served to sustain growth moving forward. Shortly after implementation, YVC Philadelphia experienced an influx of online donations, which significantly exceeded the board’s expectations.

In addition to OCG, they were able to have members volunteer at Duckrey Elementary and with the head of the Information Technology Department at their school. Here they took on a variety of tasks including, one-on-one help with students, helping teachers with in-class instruction and helping with miscellaneous IT issues that there were problems with.

Temple AIS Chapter members surrounding an information table.“…We include other topics around coding into our curriculum,” Publicover said. “For example, we spotlight successful people who used coding to benefit the world. These little aspects of the club are what we also hope impact the lives of the students who join. If we open just one club member’s eyes to coding, then we consider ourselves successful. “

This chapter did not let COVID-19 set them back, but rather the chapter used it as fuel for the rest of the spring semester. This chapter wanted to make sure that their members were still engaged and had to opportunity to grow as professionals through the Technical Development Workshops and Professional Development Workshops.

To learn more about the AIS student chapter at Temple University, please visit https://www.temple-ais.org/.

The AIS Student Chapter program promotes the study, application, and advancement of information systems through career enhancement, professional networking, and chapter development. To learn more about the program and to find resources for joining or chartering your own chapter, please visit sc.aisnet.org.

Northern Arizona University with AIS Outstanding Community Service Award

By Taylor Strnad, AIS Communications Intern

Northern Arizona University Logo

The AIS Student Chapter at Northern Arizona University, the Information Systems Association at Northern Arizona University, has been awarded the AIS Ou

tstanding Community Service Award recognizing chapters that have made a major contribution to their local community.

One of the larger events that Northern Arizona University’s student chapter hosted during the 2019-2020 academic year was their Linux tutorial. Linux is an operating system like Windows, iOS or Mac OS, according to Linux.com. This event was open to all of campus and allowed people to learn the basics of Linux and generally about information systems.

At the AIS Student Chapter Leadership Conference, members of this chapter submitted a project to benefit their community. The student population at NAU skews heavily female, according to in.nau.edu. With that, they came up with Jobanon. Jobanon was built with the idea to remove bias from interviews. It included voice changing software, an alias and no photos of the applicant thus removing potential bias toward the interviewee. President of NAU’s chapter Ayden Pulido said that the idea started by reflecting on their owns situations and the people around them.

The next professional hurdle many of us have to overcome will be finding a career post-graduation. After doing research, we found an alarming level of bias in the hiring process regarding aspects applicants can’t control such as appearance or disabilities,” Pulido said. “Not only did we aim to create software that would make the job search process fairer and more accessible, but also hoped to strengthen the workforce by hiring for ability rather than a preconceived notion.”

Another large part of their community service happened inside the classroom. Members of this chapter were Teacher’s assistants for both intro-level Information System courses offered at NAU. Having club members in these positions help get students interested in the major early on and also helped chapter members realize who may be struggling in their classes. To combat that, members made themselves available outside of classroom time as tutors for these very same classes. Pulido said that this involvement also helped with recruitment to the club.

“Since having a number of tutors and teaching assistants in classes representing the club, we’ve seen an increase in student interest and enthusiasm in seeing what the club has to offer and various topics in the Information Systems field,” Pulido said. “This has allowed us to plan events that reach a greater number of students, increasing awareness and attendance of club activities which will hopefully increase even further when we return to a completely in-person environment.”

The NAU community is supportive of their chapter and Pulido says giving back through community service is the best way they have found to give back. Their chapter sees community service as a way to promote positive change within the Franke College of Business. To continue their mission of giving back and lending their skillset wherever possible they are exploring options to help the surrounding Flagstaff community.

The Information Systems Association provides students at Northern Arizona University that have shown an interest in IS an opportunity to network with other majors, while building our common knowledge about the IT industry. To learn more, please visit the chapter online at https://nau.campuslabs.com/engage/organization/computerinformationsystems.

The AIS Student Chapter program promotes the study, application, and advancement of information systems through career enhancement, professional networking, and chapter development. To learn more about the program and to find resources for joining or chartering your own chapter, please visit sc.aisnet.org.

 

Middle Tennessee State University named AIS Best New Chapter

By Taylor Strnad, AIS Communications Intern

Middle Tennessee State University’s student chapter has been awarded the AIS Best New Chapter Award for 2019-2020. This award is given to the best chapter founded (or restarted) 15 months or less before the report due date. The chapter’s Vice President of Social Media Robert Mepham said that being a new chapter can be difficult because the chapter had no precedent when planning events, reaching out to members of the community, or even while making connections within the campus’s student organizations office.

“We’ve done projects ranging from running the clock system at a local half marathon to using our IT skills to create a series of informative dashboards for our county’s animal shelters,” Mepham said. “We even participated in a holiday gift drive that was being run by our campus’s police department, which is another way that we feel that we as a chapter are making a positive impact in our local community.”

This student chapter tackles professional development in various ways, one of which is hosting panel discussions featuring Bridgestone, Tenncare, DATalent, Greater Nashville Technology Council and the Nashville Software School. They also organized a series of resume workshops and mock interviews to prepare their members for the job market.

“We had representatives from a handful of Nashville companies sit down with our members and give them first-hand advice from the hiring offices of these major companies to improve the competitiveness of our member’s resumes,” Mepham said. “Also, the same representatives were gracious enough to set up mock interviews for our members and give them even more experience in the job search process.”

Leading into its second year, Mepham said that the experience has been unique due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Standards and events set during the chapter’s first year had to be adapted to the online environment. He believes that the chapter successfully transitioned into offering professional development and networking opportunities in the virtual environment but are still trying to establish a culture at MTSU’s chapter of AIS.

The Middle Tennessee State University Chapter of the Association of Information Systems serves its members by delivering relevant technology and leadership education, research and information on current business and technology issues, and forums for networking and collaboration. To learn more, please visit the chapter online at www.mtsu.edu/isa/ais.php.

The AIS Student Chapter program promotes the study, application, and advancement of information systems through career enhancement, professional networking, and chapter development. To learn more about the program and to find resources for joining or chartering your own chapter, please visit sc.aisnet.org.