New Enterprise Engineering and Policy Degree Meets Demands of IT Sector

Posted: March 26, 2001 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Elena Barbre

George Mason’s new M.S. in Enterprise Engineering and Policy prepares students to solve real problems associated with business-to-business electronic commerce, with an unprecedented focus on engineering implementation consulting and policy analysis. Created to meet the demands of the region’s information technology workforce and developed with input from the business community that will eventually hire its graduates, the program focuses on using information technology to optimize corporations and government organizations, with an emphasis on the ways information is managed and integrated across business processes.

Directed by public policy professor Rainer Sommer, the program is jointly offered by the School of Public Policy and the School of Information Technology and Engineering, and leads students into the Ph.D. programs in either school. Students learn to design and manage all aspects of corporate and government enterprises from both a technical and a public policy perspective, and get first-hand experience in problem solving by participating in research projects funded by some of the largest enterprise integration solution providers in the area, including Oracle Corp., SAP America, Great Plains, PROMATIS, ILOG, and IDS Scheer.

“This program is the first of its kind anywhere in the country,” says Karla Hoffman, chair of the Systems Engineering and Operations Research Department and co-creator of the program. “Most e-commerce programs have a business-school orientation–they are concerned mostly with how to market products and services on the Internet. Our program considers the back-office integration of corporate-wide information systems.”

“Our graduates will have an extraordinary edge in the marketplace,” says Thomas Gulledge, professor of public policy and operations research and the program’s other co-creator. “Unlike other programs that teach to only one integrated solution, this program teaches the pros and cons of many solutions. It teaches how to define solutions and modify the original configuration to meet the specific needs of the client.”

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