Category Archives: Information Technology Research Institute

Information Technology Students Receive Insight from Industry Executives

The Information Technology Research Institute, an outreach center at the Sam M. Walton College of Business, hosted executive forums on Sept. 14-15 for high school and college students interested in the field of information technology.

Information technology executives from Tyson Foods Inc., the state of Arkansas’ Department of Information Systems, Walmart, Arvest Bank Operations, Acxiom, ConocoPhillips, FedEx, J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc., Arkansas BlueCross BlueShield, Teradata and Movista were on hand to answer questions about appropriate academic classes, desired skills and information technology trends and to offer career tips.

Rajiv Sabherwal moderates the Executive Forum.
Rajiv Sabherwal, chair of the information systems department, moderated the technology panel while Eric Bradford, managing director of ITRI, managed the event.

More than 250 high school students from across Arkansas attended the forum on Sept. 15. Their questions addressed issues ranging from Windows 10 deployment, data breaches, hiring tips and developing information technology talent. Panelists provided multiple responses, each from their unique perspective. View this event at http://bit.ly/2dtpGAk. The forum was moderated by Rajiv Sabherwal, chair of the Walton College Department of Information Systems.

Some 80 University of Arkansas students attended the forum on Sept. 14.  Susan Bristow, clinical assistant professor of the information systems department, moderated the question and answer session. Students inquired about academic studies, interview preparation and career options. After responding to questions, members of the panel talked to students individually.

The Information Technology Research Institute is committed to promoting student interest in the study of information technology and facilitating the interaction between potential employees and its board of advisers. The executive forums for high school students and college students are just two events the institute hosts to accomplish this goal.

To learn more about the Information Technology Research Institute, visit itri.uark.edu.

Institute Hosts IT Executive Forum for Students

The Information Technology Research Institute will present an IT Executive Forum for college students Wednesday, Sept. 14, at 3 p.m. in the Donald W. Reynolds Center for Enterprise Development auditorium at the Sam M. Walton College of Business.

During the event, students can ask seasoned information technology professionals questions regarding careers, academic guidance and skills needed in the field of technology. Executives from Walmart, J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc., Tyson Foods, Acxiom, FedEx, Hewlett Packard and more will be on hand to share their experience and advice regarding information technology.

The event is open to all University of Arkansas students.

Seating is limited to 300 students. Register today. For more information, visit the Information Technology Research Institute.

Campers Learn Technology Opportunities at Walton

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Twelve high school students from groups underrepresented in technology fields got the opportunity to learn about career opportunities open to them during the 17th Technology Awareness Program at the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas.

The Information Technology Research Institute, the Walton College Office of Diversity and Inclusion and the Department of Information Systems hosted the 12 students for a week-long residential camp June 19-24.

“It is vital that technology fields include minorities and women,” said Eric Bradford, managing director of the institute. “Research shows that diversity helps drive innovation, which in turn shapes the future of technology.”

Campers lived in a dorm, ate at Brough Commons dining hall, and met faculty and staff while on campus. Students participated in an information technology project, researched topics at Mullins Library and presented their findings as part of a closing ceremony. Walton College staff discussed with students the potential salaries of technology professionals and how the students can apply for admission to the University of Arkansas.

Campers toured the information systems department at Walmart headquarters to learn more about technology's role in business.
Campers toured the information systems department at Walmart headquarters to learn more about technology’s role in business.

Campers also heard from professionals representing Dillard’s, Acxiom, Walmart, J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc. and Arvest Bank regarding how those companies use technology daily. Students toured Walmart’s information systems department to see professionals in action.

“These young people came here ready to learn,” said Barbara Lofton, director of Diversity Programs at Walton College. “Based on their research and final presentations, each student would be a welcome addition to any occupation in the field of technology and to the university.”

The camp culminated with three student teams presenting business cases, reflecting how technology could resolve common issues. The lessons learned were summed up by one camper’s parent.

“It was one of the most incredible displays of coaching, mentoring and teaching that I have seen in a long time,” said Denisho Coleman Sr., an alumnus of the University of Arkansas. “To see those students present subject matter in the order and depth in the short period of time afforded was very emotional to me –- in particular the SWOT analysis, which is a mainstay for how we justify corporate capital expenditures as a routine part of how we do our jobs.”

To attend the camp, participants must hold a 3.0 GPA, submit three essays and be a rising high school junior or senior. The camp was made possible by the Information Technology Research Institute board members: ArcBest Technologies, Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield, Arkansas Department of Information Systems, Arvest Bank Group, ConocoPhillips, Dillard’s, Inc., FedEx Services, Hewlett Packard, InContext Solutions, J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Movista, Phillips 66, Teradata, Tyson Foods and Walmart.

Girls in IT Conference

More than 100 young women in high school and junior high school networked with professional women currently working in the field of information technology during the 2nd annual Girls in IT event to learn about industry careers, courses, and needed skills. This daylong affair was held at the Sam M. Walton College of Business on Wednesday, Nov. 19. Schools from Fayetteville, Springdale, Rogers, Bentonville, Prairie Grove, and even as far away as Pine Bluff, participated. The day was filled with a mix of activities, all geared toward encouraging young women to consider information technology as a field of study and a career. Continue reading Girls in IT Conference

Mixing Business with Technology: The IT Executive Forum

On Thursday, Oct. 2, more than 300 high school and college students attended the IT Executive Forum, hosted by the Information Technology Research Institute at the Sam M. Walton College of Business. After introducing each group of students and their teachers, young people eagerly asked these technology executives how to prepare for the future.

Continue reading Mixing Business with Technology: The IT Executive Forum