Greetings Alumni & Friends!

As the OM&IS department chair, I often get asked the question, "What is OM&IS?" People hear what the acronym stands for, (Operations Management & Information Systems), but when they want to select a major, send a son or daughter to NIU, or hire an NIU grad they stop to ask, "What is OM&IS...really?"

We decided to make it simple to remember with two words...Processes & Technology. The Operations Management (OM) deals with quality management, service operations, product design, inventory control, logistics, and supply chain management where the Information Systems (IS) part of the program focuses on learning leading-edge information technologies and management of those technologies. Oftentimes people think of our program as just about programming and computing, when it's equally about business process, systems, analytics, and project management.

In 2013, Businessweek ranked the Information Systems programs No. 34 and Operations Management No. 60 nationwide. Both our undergraduate and graduate programs are extremely successful in terms of student interest, job placement, and graduate starting salaries. Companies and organizations hiring our graduates appreciate the manner in which we have effectively integrated business operations with information technology.

I am excited to report that the Master of Science in Management Information Systems (MIS) earned STEM designated degree program status last September. Championed by the Illinois Board of Higher Education, the goal of STEM is to increase science, technology, engineering, and mathematics literacy and enthusiasm among students. This will help attract more international students to NIU to study MIS, since students who graduate from a designated STEM degree program may extend their stay for an additional 17-month Optional Practical Training (OPT) extension. Moreover, with STEM designated degree program status, the OM&IS faculty are afforded more opportunities to earn research grants in the STEM areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

The OM&IS Department has successfully implemented SAP in both its undergraduate and graduate curriculum. SAP fits nicely with the department theme - run business better by improving processes and using technology. A total of 49 students received SAP Student Recognition Awards presented by the SAP University Alliances Program since 2012.

Our program and its accolades give me much pride. As do the successful alumni who have graduated from our programs. We have over 3,326 alumni from the OM&IS Department and they have gone on to work at some of the largest and most prominent companies in the world. Abbott, Allstate, Caterpillar, Cumberland Consulting, Deloitte, Discover, FBI, IBM, Intel, KPMG, Lowe's Distribution, McDonald's Corporate, McKesson, Motorola Mobility, Pella, Sears, TransUnion, United Airlines, Target, True Value, Walgreens, and Walmart Corporate are examples of companies who have hired OM&IS graduates and want to hire more – OM&IS students are in high demand!

I hope you enjoy reading the OM&IS program and alumni stories below. For further information, I encourage you to contact me at or Steven Kispert, Academic Advisor and Internship Coordinator, at (815) 753-6372 or


Dr. Chang Liu, D.B.A.
Professor and OM&IS Department Chair

Narrowing the Gender Gap: Helping Women in Technology

OM&IS is a unique, innovative discipline at NIU. Our graduates help solve business problems using technology and process improvement. Many industries are snapping up graduates who can read, interpret and manipulate data. The OM&IS employment rate after graduation is 93% (of those who responded to a recent alumni survey we sent out) and our graduates go on to be leaders in their field. But we are deficient in one area—females entering the program. The percentage of women entering OM&IS is estimated at 20%. Read entire story >>

Two for One: OM&IS Pride Challenge

Chris & Lorraine Millington, longtime friends of the College of Business, have created a unique opportunity for all Operations Management & Information Systems (OM&IS) alumni, family and friends — a two for one challenge. Any new donor has the opportunity to make a donation to the Department of OM&IS and the Millingtons will donate twice the amount — that's a 200% return on your investment. Read entire story >>

To take advantage of the OM&IS Pride Challenge, go to

Interested in how scholarships impact our students? Read six stories from OM&IS scholarship recipients.

OM&IS Expands SAP in the Classroom

According to a recent estimate in Business Management, 70% of Forbes 500 companies run their business with the help of SAP. SAP, which stands for "Systems, Applications, and Products in data processing," is one of the elite systems used in the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software market. SAP allows all major business processes to be integrated and standardized. Last year, the College of Business officially became a member of the SAP University Alliance Program. Read entire story >>

Distinguished Donor Profile - David Lipien

Coming to the United States from Europe (Poland) after WWII with very little money in their pocket, a young family had a dream for a better life. It's the start of a classic immigrant story. David Lipien's parents' dream included the best education for their children. So when David started looking at colleges, he chose NIU. It had the right mix of size, program, location, and cost -- a natural fit for him. NIU's mid-size campus provided him the confidence and most importantly, an opportunity to succeed.

Learn how David used his OM&IS degree as a springboard in attaining his goals.


Vol. 3, Issue 3          March  2014


April 4, 2014
Social Impact Summit
Barsema Alumni & Visitor's Center, DeKalb

April 22, 2014
SpearMC Consulting Business Social

May 2, 2014
Alumni Luncheon
Harry Caray's, Lombard

Distinguished Donor Event
invitation only

Events subject to change.

In April's Edition:
Meet our Alumni Award Winners

Donors are vital to our success. You help provide day-to-day essentials in the classroom, scholarship awards for hard-working students, and program and faculty support. You impact every facet of the university, and the entire NIU community is grateful for your generosity as one of our distinguished donors.

View College of Business
Dean's Circle Members

(as of 2/28/14)

View College of Business President's Circle Members
(as of 2/28/14)

Thank you for your support.

Your Feedback is Important
We look forward to hearing from you. If you have ideas about improving this newsletter or
would like to share your
thoughts, please contact us
or Denise Schoenbachler at

We'd also like to be updated on your career or personal moves.

Send to a friend