A team of three Lipscomb University students has taken top honors and $9,000 in prize money in the first-ever Deloitte Challenge, a competition among Nashville’s colleges and universities that allows students to demonstrate their technical know-how by developing a working mobile application to solve a practical business problem.
For the inaugural event, teams were asked to develop a mobile app that would facilitate coffee/food runs for groups working on client sites. Each team had access to a mentor from Deloitte to assist them in thinking through customer needs and other development issues.
The LU School of Computing and Informatics fielded two teams in the challenge. Alexander Givant, a senior computer science major; Marian Rushdy, a senior electrical and computer engineering major; and Stuart Pounders, a junior computer science major, placed first ahead of teams of undergraduate and graduate students from Belmont, Fisk and Middle Tennessee State universities.
The Lipscomb team, under the faculty guidance of Steve Nordstrom, director of undergraduate programs for the School of Computing and Informatics, won with its app iOrder, a mobile application for the Android platform allowing users to order premium coffee and lattes from the convenience of their mobile phone. Each team member received $3,000 in prize money.
Also competing in the challenge from Lipscomb was a team of computer science seniors led by captain Phillip Yates and including Christina Martin and Dylan Jones.
“Their passion for their craft along with their enthusiasm and strong work ethic carried the day,” Nordstrom said in a release regarding the two LU teams.
Following a three-week intensive development period, each team submitted its apps and delivered a presentation to a team of judges from Deloitte. The apps were evaluated based on usefulness, innovation, technology and quality. Results were announced at a banquet recently hosted by Deloitte at the Music City Sheraton Hotel.
The Lipscomb University graduate business program is offering a full-tuition scholarship, worth up to $41,400, through its Degrees of Difference Full Scholarship Video Competition. This is the second year for the competition, and LU officials are touting this as the only business school scholarship in the country awarded based on popular vote. Contestants will produce a two-minute video that illustrates a compelling personal story about how a graduate business degree from Lipscomb University "will impact their lives and the lives of others." Read more here.
The nation’s assistant surgeon general will visit the Lipscomb University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences on April 25 to discuss health care reform.
Rear Admiral Scott F. Giberson, assistant surgeon general, director of the Commissioned Corps Personnel and Readiness and chief professional officer/pharmacy will address the process of transforming health care before an audience that is expected to be comprised of pharmacists, government leaders and members of the Nashville Health Care Council, among others.
The discussion begins at 2 p.m. in the Paul Rogers Board Room located in Lipscomb University’s Ezell Center and is free and open to the public. The event is part of the Conversations of Significance Executive Leadership Series hosted by Lipscomb’s College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.
In 2001, Giberson responded to the anthrax attacks in New York City and was later chosen by his peers as the national coordinator for more than 40 response teams under the newlyformed Department of Homeland Security. Giberson has served in roles as a clinical pharmacist, chief pharmacist, senior public health advisor, senior medical program officer, principal consultant and division director.
“The purpose of bringing leaders such as Scott Giberson to our college is to expose our students and our community to the larger health care issues and initiatives that are impacting the industry,” said Roger L. Davis, dean of the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. “Our students will have the opportunity to get an inside look at the issues and challenges that the leaders of this nation deal with on a daily basis and to learn how it will impact them as practicing pharmacists and health care providers in the future.”
Local nonprofit startup Our Senior Nation is looking for “senior friendly” businesses that can help sponsor intergenerational events geared towards helping senior citizens learn the latest technology skills and other critical tasks.
In conjunction with the campaign, student volunteers from Belmont and Lipscomb universities will help about 25 seniors at 1 p.m. today at the Windland South Independent Senior Living community in southeast Nashville.
Barry Owens, Our Senior Nation president, said he was inspired to start the organization when he realized there was “a coming tidal wave” of unmet needs for seniors. He also got help with the project from CEO Fellowship, a group of Christian executives who meet locally on a regular basis.
“It’s truly a tsunami; you have 200,000 baby boomers turning 65 every month,” said Owens (pictured). “Unfortunately, our government can’t meet all those needs and isn’t going to be able to in the future. People often just need help with small tasks — learning to use an iPhone or a computer program. Sometimes they just need someone to take them to the grocery store.
“Our idea is to organize young people and students, who are usually very advanced in technology skills, to help seniors learn and adapt to new technologies,” Owens added. “Ideally, we’ll have volunteers helping to fill unmet needs [beyond technology] that we know the government is not going to be able to pay for.”
Owens said Our Senior Nation is prepared to send volunteers into churches, neighborhood centers, senior living communities, libraries and other public spaces. The group has been working directly with Lipscomb and Belmont universities to create an active pool of student volunteers.
“There are so many unmet needs,” Owens said. “More than half of those 65 and over have a disability. Nearly 15 million have a severe disability. Hundreds of thousands have lost their home to foreclosure due to the economic downturn. One third of those 65 and over live in poverty or struggle to just pay for necessities.”
Business sponsors have included Christian Reality, Lowes Home Improvement, Fantastic Sam’s, Your Next Step and United Structural Systems. For more information, visit here.
Jackson National Life Insurance, which runs a regional headquarters in Cool Springs, is giving Lipscomb University leaders a big help in building out their computing and informatics offerings by cutting a check to fund the launch of an information technology laboratory. The facility will help Lipscomb model how IT is used in corporate settings, including via analytics and data mining.
The fundraising campaign to complete the ITM lab is ongoing. The Jackson donation will go toward the purchase of a server for virtualization, said SCI director Fortune Mhlanga. Additional equipment needed for the lab includes Windows OS and software licensing, a server UPS and switch, device switches and cabling, student laptops, LCD displays and virtualization software licensing.