University of Texas at Dallas Prepares Students for the Low-Code Future

The University of Texas at Dallas is an education and research powerhouse. The Carnegie Commission on Higher Education designated UTD an “R1” doctoral-granting university of the highest research activity. Faculty, including a Nobel laureate and members of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering, deliver top-ranked programs in business, engineering, science, the arts, and technology. UTD has been named a “Best Value College” by The Princeton Review for 7 years.

The University is committed to “preparing students for rewarding lives and productive careers in a constantly changing world.” Gaurav Shekhar, UTD’s Program Manager for the Masters in Information Technology and Management program, recognizes that introducing students to the concepts and skills of low-code development is an important part of that credo.

Appian was proud to partner with Professor Shekhar in 2018 to provide low-code platform skills training for UTD students. In 2019, things got more exciting when Professor Shekhar decided to make low-code the basis of the Capstone project for students in his Digital Consulting class. He considered a few platforms. His students needed development simplicity AND enterprise-grade power (integrations, security, etc.) to accomplish something meaningful quickly. He chose Appian’s cloud platform.

The project involved a partnership with Dallas-based DigitalShopper.com, the top online “super store,” and a 5-star reseller on Amazon.com, Walmart.com, Ebay, and more. The students were tasked with identifying a high-impact opportunity for digital transformation of the company’s operations, and developing a software solution to meet the need.

These students were a mix of business- and IT-minded individuals, none of whom had any prior experience with Appian. We provided them with a free trial instance of our platform – but no formal training. An Appian sales consultant provided a bit of mentorship, but essentially, they picked up everything they needed to learn through our online documentation and training videos.

The students chose to tackle the very core of DigitalShopper’s business: Fulfillment Automation. In just one semester, they used Appian to create and re-fine a full-function application to streamline and digitize the process. The application is scalable, secure, and deployment-ready.

That’s the power of low-code: transformational apps created with simple visual composition, delivered faster than you ever thought possible.

Dallas-area companies interested in partnering with University of Texas at Dallas on future Digital Consulting Capstone projects are encouraged to contact Professor Gaurav Shekhar. We here at Appian highly recommend it!

Universities and other organizations across the region interested in partnering with Appian for rapid business transformation through low-code can reach out to Jen Doyle, our Central-area VP of Sales, at jen.doyle@appian.com.

We send our heartiest congratulations to Professor Shekar’s students, and we look forward to doing it again next year!

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