Evolving Michigan IT: Preparing and supporting our community for the future

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    Discussion groups considered what people or teams the Michigan IT community should engage with more or differently moving forward. (Joel Iverson, ITS)

Nearly 100 people packed a Michigan IT Symposium session to discuss the next evolution of the Michigan IT community and program. Formally charged in 2012 to align to a common vision, the community has grown to include about 3,300 people across the University of Michigan—a majority of whom work in a traditional IT role. 

Seven years later, the Michigan IT Steering Committee recognizes that “IT” is experiencing a growing number of interdisciplinary and non-traditional roles, increasing complexity and expense, and underrepresented minority gaps, consistent with industry. 

The session was facilitated by Cathy Curley (LSA), Stefanie Horvath (ITS), and Heather Kipp (HITS). The speakers challenged the audience to consider if there are people or teams that the Michigan IT community should engage more or differently moving forward, and what the community should keep doing, stop doing, or do more of in order to support its existing members. 

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Common themes emerging from the conversation included:

  • Populations to engage: Students, other universities, local technology companies researchers, faculty, women, and diversity groups
  • Keep doing: Michigan IT Symposium, Communities of Practice, IT Mentor Program, continued IT service improvements
  • Stop doing: Duplication of effort, projects that do not deliver value, and service churn.

The speakers challenged session attendees to invite a colleague to an upcoming Michigan IT event or Community of Practice meeting. Word of mouth is often the best way to expose others to the programs and initiatives sponsored by Michigan IT.

You are invited to provide your feedback as well. Take this brief survey and tell us who we should engage and how the community can help you thrive.