Student Spotlight: Michael Wangerin

Name: Michael Wangerin
Program: MS in Information Management
Expected graduation year: 2018
LinkedIn profile

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I have been working in IT for 30 years in engineering and management positions and am currently earning my Master of Science in Information Management from the iSchool. I founded a successful computer consulting firm and operated it for more than 16 years—earning the Microsoft Gold Certified Partner designation before selling the firm in 2010. My experience includes application development, infrastructure, and security. I have earned numerous IT certifications, including Sage Certified Pro Series ERP Consultant, SonicWALL Certified Security Administrator, and multiple Microsoft Certified Professional Certifications.

How do you define information management?

To me, information management is the holistic view of how organizations manage their information resources in order to maximize organizational efficiency and financial position; improve products and processes; connect with associates, consumers and suppliers; manage projects; and reduce risks.

What is your academic background?

I earned my Bachelor of Science (cum laude) from SUNY Polytechnic with a dual major: Computer Information Systems and Business and Public Management. I also hold two associate degrees from Mohawk Valley Community College: an AAS in Retail Business Management and AS in Liberal Arts and Science.

What made you want to explore a career in information management?

Working with information technology is more than a career; it is my primary professional interest and hobby. I became enthralled with database application development and programming while working on my associate degree and continue with ever-increasing interest.

How are you applying what you are learning in your program?

I apply what I’m learning to personal systems, and also in a complex development project I have been working on for an extended period. I also think about how my studies apply to organizations I have worked in and analyze how things could have been done better in those settings.

Tell us about your experience collaborating with classmates in an online environment.

I think the collaboration tools provided are very effective and truly allow distance-learning students the opportunity to feel like part of a local campus community during class. The small class sizes and ability to interact with the professors and classmates make it feel like a smaller school. The same tools allow interaction between students when working on group projects. The visual interaction along with audio conferencing make each meeting productive and stimulating. Additionally, we are able to effectively share file content through the system.