IBM helps prepare students for IT jobs

by Editor 9/4/2008 4:46:00 PM
IBM will provide university staff with courseware and technical skill-building tools in order to help the educators prepare for IT and business courses in the fall semester.

The IBM tools are designed to introduce students to IT job skills that are currently in demand: enterprise systems management, software development and business process modelling.

A recent report from the U.S. Department of Labor predicts that the demand for jobs that require science, engineering and technical training will rise 51 percent by the end of 2009. This, in turn, could produce six million new jobs that call for strong technical and business skills.

Kevin Faughnan, Director of IBM’s Academic Initiative, says:

“Educational institutions today are challenged to keep abreast of the fast-changing, dynamic nature of work. This impacts both their ability to plan technology courses and deliver real-time teaching material to their students. By opening up resources to faculty that were previously only available to partners and ISVs, they can now access on-line training on IBM technologies, allowing for enhanced education, at their own pace, on their own time.”

Tools available through IBM’s Academic Initiative website include Teaching Business Process Management with Innov8, Teaching Business Process Modelling, and Teaching Enterprise Systems. University staff also has free access to the Virtual Innovation Center for IBM Academic Initiative and Training Demos.

Rich Burkhard, Assistant Professor at San Jose State University, who is going to teach IBM’s Innov8 game and use Teaching Business Process Management with Innov8 with his students, says: 

“Innov8 adds to SJSU’s interests in increasing the focus on business services and service management – skills that students today increasingly need to have to succeed in a global business environment. Getting students to understand and integrate the concepts of Business Process Modelling and collaborative software development can present many challenges. Innov8 will give us new ways to approach student learning of these subjects in ways that can increase student engagement. This is a truly interactive method that puts students in the driver’s seat.”

IBM has also released a new Course Mapping Guide for educators on the Academic Initiative website that links IBM technologies and tools to existing university courses recommended by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), the Association for Information Systems (AIS), and the Association of Information Technology Professionals (AITP).

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