BYU Information Systems Students Shine at Leadership Conference

PROVO, Utah – Jun 03, 2015 – Brigham Young University information systems students earned three awards at the 2015 Association for Information Systems Student Chapter Leadership Conference in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

The honors highlighted the annual conference where the students joined peers from around the country to meet industry professionals, gain new perspectives and showcase their knowledge gained on campus.

Competing against five other national finalists, four juniors in the information systems program — Joshua Haws from Alpine Utah; Cody Pettit from Savannah, Mo.; Jordan Rader from Concord, Calif.; and Tanner Sawyer from Meridian, Idaho — combined their efforts to claim first place in the Security Policy Competition. The team worked to create an IT security policy for employees and clients of a fictional company that balanced security and accessibility.

“We mainly implemented topics we learned in our business processes and controls class,” Haws says. “It was amazing to see how prepared we were for the competition thanks to our information systems courses.”

A second team of Marriott School students won third place in the Women in Information Systems Video Competition. The competition asked students to create a video explaining why women, traditionally underrepresented in computing disciplines, should study information systems. Members of the BYU team included master of information systems students Tahna Black from St. George, Utah; Emily Cookson from Hillsboro, Ore.; Michelle Reynolds Hill from Arvada, Colo.; Nina Lang from Shenyanng, China; and information systems junior Kyle Longhurst from Orem, Utah.

“I loved seeing the experiences of our alumni and women currently in the program in our video,” says Cookson, who serves as co-president of BYU’s AIS chapter. “We all share an incredible amount of passion and energy for information systems.”

The BYU AIS chapter was also presented with a Distinguished Chapter award — one of three universities to receive the award out of 69 chapters nationwide. Cookson and BYU AIS co-president Travis Selland, a first-year MISM student from Alamo, Calif., accepted the award. The pair also was asked to present at the conference where they spoke on how the BYU chapter has grown and overcome challenges since its founding in 2010.

“Both the competition and the conference were a great opportunity to see how much our professors have prepared us and how much we have learned during the junior core,” Pettit says. “It was great to be able to add to BYU’s strong reputation through the competitions and networking during the conference.”

The Marriott School is located at Brigham Young University, the largest privately owned, church-sponsored university in the United States. The school has nationally recognized programs in accounting, business management, entrepreneurship, finance, information systems and public management. The school’s mission is to prepare men and women of faith, character and professional ability for positions of leadership throughout the world. Approximately 3,000 students are enrolled in the Marriott School’s graduate and undergraduate programs.

(l to r): Joshua Haws, Jordan Rader, Tanner Sawyer and Cody Pettit claimed first place in the Security Policy Competition.

Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Madi Nield