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I am proud to announce that Grand Valley State University (GVSU) has recently created a student organization to provide a better understanding of enterprise systems.  The new student organization, Enterprise System Student Union (ESSU), will provide a link between the university and companies who utilize enterprise systems.  The Seidman College of Business, GVSU’s business school, uses SAP to teach enterprise systems and business processes to 1,500 students a year.

This semester ESSU is already 16 members strong.  One of the key things this group is going to offer their members is networking opportunities and professional growth.  Primarily we are going to accomplish this by hosting the ERP Speaker Series, going to visit companies, tutoring for GVSU’s enterprise systems related courses, and group meetings this semester.

GVSU’s ERP Initiative has been holding the ERP Speaker Series event for the past 3 years.  At this event Dr. Simha Magal, the director of the ERP Initiative, brings in a local or regional executive to talk about the importance of ERP for all business majors. Recently Dr. Magal decided to incorporate a recent graduate or current student into the ERP Speaker Series to talk about how ERP has helped them grow professionally. To get more information on the event please visit the ERP Initiative’s portal

On October 9th, ESSU traveled to Owens Corning in Toledo, Ohio for our first company visit.  We learned about how Owens Corning uses their ERP system (SAP) to run their business.  Owens Corning showed us how they use SAP to improve their business; two of the main things they focused on were BI and PI/XI.  On October 23rd we plan to tour Steelcase Inc. We are looking for more companies to tour for the rest of the academic year. 

Our general group meetings are held bi-weekly and are focused on growing our members professionally.  We plan to hold resume workshops, interview practice questions, and mock interviews.

We also would like to partner up with other student groups across the country to potentially share ideas and network.  We also would like to partner up with SAP’s University Alliances to provide a place for our groups to collaborate.  Down the road SAP could hold a competition and provide a prize to the winning team.  One idea I have for the competition is that SAP gives every school the same business case (about one of their customers) and the students present their ideas to judges about how SAP can help that company become sustainable for the future and obtain above average returns.  The best presentation could get a prize.  A couple of ideas I had for prizes could be free admission to TechEd (almost no cost to SAP) and/or a trophy.  If anyone else has, any ideas for a competition I would love to hear them!

Special thanks to Dr. Simha Magal at Grand Valley State University for motivating the student body to get this group started.

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