Seminar sessions offer career prep for MS-IS students

Master of information systems students hear from industry professionals

The recent fall and spring semesters offered students enrolled in Lindner's Master of Science in information systems (MS-IS) program the opportunity to connect their academic learnings with the realities of the business world.

In lieu of traditional classroom instruction, the students gathered on Fridays for a seminar class that featured company representatives showcasing applications of information systems in the real world, the qualities sought by companies in their employees and/or a challenge facing the company or its industry.

MS-IS Program Director Rob Rokey noted that the format, length and topic of the seminar sessions is up to the company representative. Students also practice networking and other soft skills during this time.

Kevin Thomas, staff technical product manager, GE Aerospace, BBA, BS ’19, chose to convey the “importance of real-world experience” during his spring semester address. This was Thomas’ third academic year presenting to MS-IS students.

Students, faculty and an alumnus stand on the Lindner Hall atrium steps.

Kevin Thomas, staff technical product manager, GE Aerospace (first row, far left) and Rob Rokey, MS-IS program director (first row, far right) with MS-IS students at Lindner Hall. Photo/Suzanne Buzek.

“There is nothing that can replicate hands-on work, and the University of Cincinnati continues to have a cutting-edge experiential learning program,” said Thomas, who fulfilled four co-op rotations with GE Aerospace before joining the company full-time in 2019. “I hope the students take advantage of the opportunities the university and businesses in the Cincinnati region provide to enhance their education and make themselves stand out among other applicants as they graduate and begin the next chapter of their journey.”

Shreyas Nadig, MS ’24, said that the Friday seminars are one of the many “extra steps” the MS-IS program takes to assist students with networking-building, as well as providing exposure to different industries.

A woman in a tan suit jacket holds up a plaque with a student in professional dress.

Shreyas Nadig, MS ’24 (right), with Lindner Dean Marianne Lewis after being honored as Outstanding MS-IS Student of the Year. Photo/Joseph Fuqua II.

“Companies from finance, ed-tech, retail, consumer packaged goods and many other industries participated, and the speakers come with great knowledge and enthusiasm to share their experiences with us,” said Nadig, recently recognized as Outstanding MS-IS Student of the Year at the Lindner Student Awards. “This is a great way to stay connected with the current trends, and it has personally helped me route my focus towards my career goals.”

Thomas said his favorite part of the seminar is the Q&A session, offering examples of what he has heard from students in the past.

  • “Sharing your real-world product owner experience helped me understand what someone in this role does and if that type of job would be a good fit for me.”
  • “I was familiar with GE Aerospace. However, I thought you only made engines. It was great to learn more about the company, including your work in the wider aerospace and defense industry.”
  • “Thank you for sharing insights into what it is like to work in technology in a non-digital technology company. I have a better idea of what ‘a day in the life’ looks like.”

During the 2022-23 academic year, MS-IS students surveyed three months after graduation reported a mean starting salary of $106,264. Rokey said that students enter the MS-IS program — which requires a bachelor’s degree in any discipline to be considered for entry — for a range of practical reasons.

“What I hear all the time from students is that they come because of the mix of business and technical subjects. They come because of our faculty, and, of course, they come because of our emphasis on experiential learning.”

Featured image at top: Kevin Thomas, staff technical product manager, GE Aerospace, BBA, BS ’19, addresses MS-IS students. Photo/Suzanne Buzek.

Study information systems at Lindner

Lindner’s Master of Science in information systems program combines core business knowledge with focused technical courses and real-world learning opportunities. The program accommodates students with diverse educational backgrounds and work experiences. Request more information, attend an information session and view the program’s application deadlines.

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