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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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College of Business Joins Microsoft Dynamics Academics Alliance

Alliance provides students access to latest industry software, networking opportunities.

2016-07-06
Minnesota State University, Mankato Media Relations Office News Release, 7-6-2016

Mankato, Minn. – Minnesota State University, Mankato’s College of Business announced that it has entered into the Microsoft Dynamics Academic Alliance, a partnership offered by Microsoft that allows educational institutions to implement Microsoft’s latest Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) technology into their curricula.

Membership in the Microsoft Dynamics Academic Alliance has provided software licenses and product upgrades for integration into College of Business classes. The College started using the CRM platform for teaching during the 2016 spring semester and will build on that initial integration during the fall of 2016 and spring of 2017.

John Kaliski, a Minnesota State Mankato associate professor of management, said the hands-on learning provided by Microsoft’s widely used, enterprise-level systems is exactly what students need to prepare them for their future careers while adding another teaching tool for faculty.

“Through the classroom and various outside activities, our students receive a tremendous competitive advantage through the Microsoft Dynamics Academic Alliance,” said Kaliski. “Students are introduced to a well-developed, highly coveted ecosystem that surrounds these products. As a faculty member, I greatly appreciate the support we have received from both Microsoft and its partners in implementing the program at Minnesota State Mankato.”

Knowledge and experience in using the software will not only benefit faculty and students, but also businesses that hire Minnesota State Mankato graduates, as the Microsoft software is one of the primary CRM and ERP platforms used in business practice.

“What is so exciting about this partnership is that it furthers the college vision and strategic priorities associated with high-impact experiential learning and real-world knowledge and skills,” said Brenda Flannery, dean of the College of Business. “The value to our students and their employment opportunities through this partnership is immeasurable. More than 350,000 companies worldwide are run on Microsoft Dynamics technology, and this partnership will allow our students to engage with those companies.”

Flannery said that Minnesota State Mankato’s College of Business hopes to continue building on its partnership with Microsoft, to include providing the company with top-quality candidates for employment.

Three recent College of Business graduates were among those hired within the last year for 200 sales and marketing job openings at Microsoft’s sales center in Fargo, N.D., Flannery said, and the Minnesota State Mankato alums are already making an impact at Microsoft.

“We’ve been told by Microsoft that our students were among their top hires from universities across the nation, and that our graduates have also been among the company’s top sales performers in a very short amount of time,” said Flannery.

For more information about the Microsoft Dynamics Academic Alliance, please contact Luke Howk, internships and external partnerships coordinator for Minnesota State Mankato’s College of Business, by phone at 507-389-1827 or by email at lucas.howk@mnsu.edu.

Minnesota State Mankato, a comprehensive university with 15,193 students, is part of the Minnesota State Colleges & Universities system, which comprises 31 state institutions.

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