Business Sponsors

Students and Business Sponsors As a project sponsor, you will join a list of very select companies/organizations who support our students in the future of global work. You will get some of the best and brightest students in the MIS Department to work as your private consultants on a project of your choice. The project team of 3-5 students will be responsible for the whole project including defining requirements, designing the product, implementing it (or getting it ready to turn over to the sponsor for implementation), developing user manuals, providing training, etc. as appropriate to the specific project.

Since students are participating in the Sbona Honors Program for college course credit, there is no charge to you (although donations to the program are appreciated if you feel you have received exceptional value). As an added benefit, you can preview these students for potential future hires. See what previous sponsors say about the experience.

Typical Projects

We undertake projects for a variety of businesses, non-profit, government, and educational organizations. Experience says that students are most successful in organizations that are reasonably well-established (i.e., past the initial start-up phase), big enough to be a true organization (i.e., more than a handful of people), and located in the South Bay Area.

We look for projects that the sponsoring organization wants and will actually use but not so critical that the organization will be in trouble if the project runs into difficulties. Typical projects include developing websites (or portion of a website), smartphone applications, networking projects and small/medium database applications. Increasingly our projects involve identifying appropriate products or software services and getting them set up properly.

The project should be "stand-alone", either a totally independent project or a separable chunk of a larger project to avoid critical dependencies. The project does not need to require development from scratch. Strictly research projects (i.e., projects where the final deliverable is a report) are not appropriate for this class. The projects must require implementation of at least a demonstration system or prototype.

Our start and finish dates are firm and based on the university calendar. The scope needs to be appropriate for a full two semester project for the team.

Commitment to Supporting the Student Project Team

Your support is key to project success. You do not need to know the technology (though if you do, that's great). You do need to have a clear understanding of your business requirements and what you want the project to do. You will need to provide any content (e.g., text and images for a website), test data for a database, etc. You will need to be available to meet with your student team at least once per week and be able to respond promptly to email and phone queries from your students. Please only request a team if you are committed to following through with the project for the entire two semester class.

Ready to Become Part of this Exciting Program?

All projects start at the beginning of the academic year so the best time to contact the Practicum Course Coordinator about a project is in early August. The Coordinator will help you evaluate the nature and scope of your project with regard to student capabilities and class requirements. We do keep a running list of prospective sponsors and projects, so contact the Coordinator any time. Please email or call to discuss your particular situation:

MIS Practicum Course Coordinator
Kevin Soohoo

For the Honors Practicum, we will officially confirm shortly before the beginning of the semester if we will be able to undertake your project. We will, however, have had several conversations about the project before the beginning of the semester, so you will know early if your project is likely to be assigned.