From Boardroom to Classroom – Vertical Alliance™ Launches Academic Initiative to Bring Real World Technologies to Classrooms at Major U.S. Universities

September 26, 2001

Vertical Alliance, Inc. recently announced an industry-leading academic initiative designed to provide graduate-level students at major U.S. colleges and universities access to real world e-business technologies that will better prepare them for the transition from classroom to boardroom. The Vertical Alliance Academic Initiatives kicks off this semester at five of the world’s leading universities — The University of California Irvine, The University of Georgia, St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, Washington University in St. Louis, and Indiana University in Bloomington.

Under the initiative, Vertical Alliance is donating specially designed e-business courseware and e-business lab exercises that provide students hands-on learning experience working on Vertical Tracker(TM), the company’s Web-based application development platform. Vertical Tracker is currently being used by corporations nationwide, enabling them to quickly deploy integrated applications through a centralized database, improving operational efficiencies while enhancing the corporation’s ability to identify, track, and gather critical data on customer buying behavior used to enhance customer relationships and marketing opportunities.

“We view this initiative as an important outreach to tomorrow’s e-business leaders who today need to be skilled on cutting-edge technologies that will shape tomorrow’s business landscape,” says Jeffrey DiFrancesco, Vertical Alliance’s CEO. To aid in that mission, Vertical Alliance is also donating versions of Vertical Tracker, affording students a laboratory experience where they can work on actual case studies in technology currently being deployed by major corporations.

“The need to thoroughly prepare students for real-world practice is key to assuring their future success,” says Dr. Rick Watson, Director of the Center for Information Systems Leadership in the Terry College of Business at the University of Georgia, who has more than 20 years of teaching experience. “Our partnership with Vertical Alliances provides a window into the most advanced Internet technologies companies are now deploying, offering a true advantage for students at the University of Georgia.”Students at the University of Georgia have already participated in a case study review, followed by hands-on experience with Vertical Tracker’s commerce, content management and user database functionalities.

The new initiative also provides Vertical Alliance with a skilled user base that understands the unique advantage of the company’s development platform.

At the University of California Irvine, the school is offering an accredited, 10-week Vertical Alliance course that serves as an element of the university’s recently introduced graduate-level technology labs.

“Our association with Vertical Alliance provides MBA students an opportunity to design and configure Web-enabled business models using templated applications,” says Don May, e-Business Curriculum Development Consultant at the school. “Students will work with technologies that build and run digitized businesses, better preparing them to do just that.”

At St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, similar Vertical Alliance-based courseware is being offered to both MBA and undergraduate students. “We are excited to be working with a company such as Vertical Alliance, which has a national presence but is located in our own backyard here in the Greater Philadelphia area,” says Dr. Vipul Gupta, PhD. “We view forming such alliances with leading solution providers as critical in keeping our courses on the cutting edge and allowing our students to learn using actual real-world cases and applications.”