Partner With Us

Are you interested in building a brand with our best and brightest, and building a recruiting pipeline from among our Information systems and operations majors? Read on..

Why– To give Information systems and operations management majors real-life project-based learning opportunities while providing student engagement opportunities to corporates to create a recruiting pipeline. This initiative is guided by the experience and support at the Magelli Office of Experiential Learning at Gies. You can see the impact our partner projects have on our students on our blog.

When – Every Fall, student teams of four to six members will work as an external consultant team on your project for twelve weeks. Projects and agreements(NDA and sponsorship) are typically finalized in Summer.

What – Projects – This practicum is focused on providing opportunities for students to apply the skills they learn in their courses. We work with our partners to scope projects where students might prototype a technology solution, evaluate platforms, solve an analytics problem with machine learning, discover insights from data, solve optimization problems, and more. Some examples on the home page.

WhoClients/Partners – Our students have worked with fortune 100 firms and small 20 person firms as well. We look for partners who can help mentor and develop our students while ensuring that they get value from their investment.

Who – Students – Selected students majoring in Information Systems(IS) (80% of the class)  and some Operations management majors (up to 20%)  will apply to this selective practicum project course in their first semester Junior year. This will help give you early access to Juniors before the Fall recruiting rush and find the best students for internships. Some seniors will also be able to take this course, to provide skills that juniors might not have.

What – ProgramThe Information Systems(IS) program is a highly regarded undergraduate program in the Gies College of Business at the University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign. The program combines classroom instruction and practical training through a series of activities that enhance students’ understanding of real-world challenges. The curriculum is designed to develop entry-level managers with the vision, versatility, and technical competence to meet requirements for business success in the 21st century. First, we seek to develop graduates who recognize the importance of the business-technology interface. Second, we train students on the design and implementation of information systems, as project managers. Finally, we train them on concepts, tools, and techniques to succeed in a data-rich economy.

Graduates of the program are highly sought after and recruited by companies in their leadership development programs and by consulting companies. Students graduating with this major are qualified for an entry-level position in firms such as Hewitt Associates, Deloitte, State Farm, KPMG, Caterpillar, GE, JP Morgan Chase, Nike, Geico and more.

Information Systems is one of the most popular majors within the Department of Business Administration.  Students must fulfill Information Systems requirements, General Education and the College of Business’s Core Courses requirements, in order to receive the Degree of Bachelor of Science in Information Systems Management.

Our curriculum has both breadth and depth, with students gaining a broad understanding of information systems disciplines and their interdependencies within and across business processes. Courses cover areas such as IT Strategy, Database Design, System Analysis and Design, E-business, Social Media strategy, Business Intelligence, Analytics, and finally IT Governance. They supplement this with electives from other areas. A full curriculum is available for reference.

Operations Management(OM) focuses on ways of developing, making, and delivering goods and services efficiently and effectively – generating value by satisfying ever-changing customer needs while improving profitability. Topics in OM include analytical decision-making, logistics, new product development, operations strategy, process improvement, project management, quality control, and supply chain management. A career in OM involves working with most other areas of the organization, more so with engineering, human resource management, information systems, and marketing.

OM graduates land jobs in roles such as business analyst, production manager, project manager, quality improvement manager, technology advisor, supply chain consultant, and value stream manager. Recent placements of Gies OM graduates have been in companies such as Aldi, Accenture, Boeing, Caterpillar, Crowe, Ernst and Young, Grant Thornton, JP Morgan Chase, IBM, and Kohls. More details on the program on our website.

Growth Plans

Information Systems – Demand for students with a background in Information Systems is skyrocketing. Our program has grown five times in the last 7 years and we have about 300 IS majors. In response to growing demand from employers, the College of Business is hiring new faculty in Information Systems in order to expand our teaching and research capacity. This also motivates us to find the best opportunities for our graduates and helps corporates find meaningful ways to engage with the students.

Operations Management– The major has about 50 students now, who have a process and analytic focus and growing steadily. Several new faculty were hired last year and a new addition is expected this year as well.

What – Partner commitment – The teams are required to work closely with the sponsoring company. The actual work is usually done at the university but students may often spend time working at the sponsor’s site, especially when the firm is local or within driving distance. Students are required to have frequent contact with the company in the form of meetings, presentations, and teleconferences. In addition, students are required to present their final reports to the sponsoring company in the form of a written report and oral presentation. While the students are provided guidance by the faculty as needed, the teams work under the direct supervision of the sponsoring company. Feedback from the sponsoring company about student performance is factored into the grades assigned to students. As for the client commitment, we expect a minimum of three-hour time allocation in the first and last week for project kickoff/wrapup and two hours a week allocation in the other 10 weeks from one person to guide the teams and ensure a successful project outcome.


Our partners support this effort with a gift of $5000 to the university for each project. A firm can sponsor more than one project for a semester, subject to the availability of students and our objective of providing diversity in projects to our students.

This fee is used to offset program expenses such as corporate partner/student meetups, faculty mentors, and student travel. The fee covers mileage reimbursements at the prevailing university rates for up to three trips for students to travel to sponsor sites(if required) within a three-hour driving radius from Champaign-Urbana. Any other costs including the cost of airfare and/or accommodation, if needed, are the responsibility of the sponsoring company.

We are looking for sponsors that want to engage with the students in a meaningful way and develop them as potential internship and full-time candidates. This will be a select group of motivated students, who can deliver at a high level and are thus looking for meaningful projects that can create impact.

For more information please contact:

Dr. Vishal Sachdev, vishal AT illinois DOT edu