Department Head Message

David Olsen, Department Head and Professor

The MIS Department in the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business offers excellence in both the undergraduate and graduate areas in MIS. The major focus in the MIS department concerns understanding business data for strategic purposes. Specifically we focus on business intelligence, analytics and database management. Though our programs are well rounded in various MIS areas, we emphasis the data sciences area.

A primary goal of the MIS department is on student placement at the top of the MIS "food chain." The focus of placement is on higher rates of placement as well as placing students in better organizations with top salaries. Already our undergraduates are attracting average starting salaries that are substantially greater than any other business department. The MIS department is the best in the western region in terms of undergraduate salaries and placement rates and is therefore a fantastic option for motivated students that want to get the best jobs in the best organizations after they graduate.

The faculty in the MIS Department has produced excellent research in both quantity and quality, but the best part is that it typically has practical benefits. Faculty, as a result of their research, often bring the new knowledge into the classroom and so students benefit from exciting uses of new technologies and approaches.

Our curriculum has been a competitive advantage compared to other MIS departments for some time. The technologies and the strategies we emphasize are well received by hiring organizations because of the relevance of the technologies and the depth of the student's understanding. We teach cutting-edge technology in areas such as database, business intelligence, analytics, web development and project management. With the explosive growth of business intelligence and analytics in MIS, our department is well positioned to deliver many students to a marketplace demanding their skills.

Students are benefitting greatly from our approach of "nimble and clever." In the book "The Art of War" by Sun Tzu, a concept relating to being nimble and clever is related. The author recounts many military battles where smaller and overmatched forces defeat larger forces by outwitting them and by reacting to changing conditions quickly and smartly. This "nimble and clever" strategy has helped us to continue to improve in comparison to other MIS programs. . This approach necessitates a motivated, curious and intelligent faculty. We have and continue to recruit faculty with these traits. Additionally, because we instill this nimble and clever philosophy in our students, they are better equipped to compete in the marketplace.

In summary, the MIS Department is an exciting place for students and faculty alike and we look forward to helping you in your pursuit of outstanding career success.