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Dean David Hall with Nick and Melinda Berardi and daughterWhen parents talk among themselves, they tend to be concerned about their children’s future and how they will do as they grow up and venture out into the world on their own. Some parents are overly boastful about their precious kids, leading to bumper stickers such as,  “My student’s an honors student” or, “My son is an Eagle Scout.” Others tend to be less boastful and (perhaps) more realistic. One comedian suggested that as your child gets older you transition from saying, “One day he’ll be the President of the United States” to, “At least he doesn’t steal!”

Students may be surprised to learn that their professors and administrators have strong feelings of concern and hope for them as they graduate and meet the world. Indeed, at events such as Parent’s Day, Open House or Meet the Dean, my staff nearly has to drag me off the stage because I tend to wax lyrically about the achievements of our undergraduates, interns, and alums.  I am a “Proud Dean.”

It is a special joy when one of our IST students is recognized by national media. This week, Ryan Glynn, a 2012 graduate, was featured in a Forbes article. Forbes mentioned that Glynn is a rising entrepreneur who is the cofounder and chief operating officer of mhoto, a company that is developing innovative software to help individuals and businesses to create original music compositions based on photos, videos, and text. mhoto software analyzes an image and creates a song tailored to represent the image theme. Forbes quotes Ryan on topics ranging from the meaning of disruptive technology to advice for entrepreneurs of all ages.  We are very proud of Ryan and his accomplishments.

Our IST graduates make a difference when they meet the world. Some have an immediate impact in organizations as interns and entry-level employees. Our Corporate Associates and organizations that attend our recruiting events are effusive about the impact of IST students. Others such as Ryan make an impact by starting their own companies. No matter what path they choose, our IST graduates have been incredibly generous in giving back to IST to help our current and future students. Two prime examples include David Rusenko, co-founder of Weebly.com, and Nick and Melinda Berardi.

David Rusenko established an Entrepreneur-in-Residence Scholarship available to juniors or seniors in the College of IST.  The scholarship provides students with up to $ 10,000 per year and the opportunity to earn six credits as you explore a business or entrepreneurial concept. David established a similar scholarship, the David Rusenko Emerging Entrepreneur Scholarship, that provides funding of up to $5,000 per year for full-time freshmen or sophomores. Nick and Melinda Berardi’s Open-Source Scholarship provides $2,500 per year to IST undergraduate students who have demonstrated activity and interest in open-source development. I strongly encourage students to take advantage of these terrific opportunities, and to apply soon! The deadline for all three scholarships is February 28.

On behalf of the faculty, staff, and administration of the College of Information Sciences and Technology, we are proud of the accomplishments, attitude, and generosity of our students and alums. It’s time to break out the bumper stickers!

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