Student E-Firm Projects
Taking the concept of capstone projects and real world experiences a step further. The e-Firm projects offer companies a unique way for evaluating potential future employees while letting student teams apply their knowledge and practice their skills in a real-world experience. Under the supervision of faculty and corporate representatives, teams work on actual projects with partner companies. E-Firm 2010 marks the third year of the department's initiative to bring real-life business experiences into the classroom and included students from the following areas:
- computer information systems
- electronic business design
- telecommunications and information management
- nursing—both undergraduate and graduate
Students were screened before registering for the course to ensure a high level of quality learning and consistent skill levels. Each student assumed a business role (such as business analyst, project manager, web designer, and system developer) and worked with their team to complete all phases of the e-firm project.
Bronson Health Care worked with teams of students and faculty from the colleges of business and health and human services
Bronson Health Care Group #1
Prior to the implementation of an organization-wide health care information system, the administration at Bronson wanted to understand the barriers and problems with the current system, as well as measure end user satisfaction during the different stages of system implementation.
For accomplishing this task, a collaborative project team was created in September 2010. The team is composed of two Bronson corporate mentors and two WMU students -- one graduate from the Bronson School of Nursing at College of Health and Human Services and one CIS undergraduate from the Department of Business Information Systems at Haworth College of Business. The goal of this project is to produce a framework for developing a survey template that will allow Bronson to expand or reuse, when needed, during or after the implementation of the planned health care information system. Bronson wants the final deliverable, a framework for developing the survey, to allow the survey to be electronic, expandable, and extensible for reuse with different audiences and different population sizes. This project is expected to provide tangible and continuous benefits to the users and the organization as a whole.
“As a part of this project I gained valuable real world experience as well as the opportunity to learn how to be a leader in a business environment.”
Michael Burns, BBA ’11, CIS Major
“This project has been amazing to work on. The partnership between students with IT experience and students with Clinical experience, as well as faculty members from WMU and mentors from Bronson has been a wonderful, collaborative, learning experience.”
Vivien R. Mudgett, RNC, MS ’11, Nursing Manager, Labor and Delivery, Bronson Methodist Hospital
Bronson Health Care Group #2
Because of Bronson’s strategic plan to lead the health care industry in the use of automated systems, the execu- tive leadership want to understand existing inefficiencies and improve the process for approving and creating their intranet websites. To achieve this objective, three adminis- trative mentors and three WMU students—two CIS majors from the Department of Business Information Systems at Haworth College of Business and one nursing graduate from WMU Bronson School of Nursing at the College of Health and Human Services began the work as a project team. Th primary goal of this project is to design an approval proces that efficiently models and tracks the website approval pro cess. After extensive analysis of the current system, the fin project deliverable consists of a model that utilizes Share- Point to reduce redundancies and inefficiencies. This proje will serve as model for the future integration of people and technology to improve business processes.
“Through this collaborative project with Bronson mentors, I gained in-depth understanding of real-world business process analysis that normally cannot be acquired from the textbook. In addition, working with CIS students also expedited my mastery of UML tools.”
Natasha A. Watson, MS ’11, Nursing
“Being a part of this unique collaboration, between business and nursing students and healthcare industry leaders, has made me confident that my WMU education has well prepared me for the challenges I will face in the professional world.”
George Sesi, BBA ’10, TIM
“Working with everyone involved with this project was truly a remarkable experience. I not only had the opportunity to contribute to a real world project, but I was also able to meet and work with extraordinary people who challenged me to seek and discover new ways of solving problems.”
Alex Smith, BBA, BS ’11 Arts and CIS (double major)