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Chinese Professors Learn about Technology Management CIO Degree

A group of Chinese professors visited the School of Business last week to learn how our technology management program and cyber security degree program prepare executive students for CIO and CISO positions.

The 25 educators, mostly computer science and ICT professors, were specifically interested in the MS in Technology Management and MS in Management of Secure Information Systems programs, which offer hybrid curriculums that combine technical core competencies with management and leadership skills.

China visit 011In describing the technology masters program and masters in cyber security content to the visitors, Program Director Jean-Pierre Auffret said the curriculum is designed to “help further the IT and cyber security leadership careers of the students and assist them in having a strategic impact in the technology and cybersecurity fields.”

And the roles of CIO and CISOs are growing in importance, said Auffret. “Today’s CIO is increasingly thought of as a chief innovator, chief strategist, chief process officer or all three, while CISOs are engaging with organizational boards as cybersecurity becomes a major strategic issue.”

Auffret also emphasized the importance of Mason’s efforts to develop global standards for CIO core competences through its work with the International Academy of CIO (IAC). Auffret is a co-founder of the IAC, which is dedicated to establishing and exchanging best practices for on CIOs and CIO Councils and facilitating ICT institution and capacity building.

The professors were most interested in the hybrid aspect of the CIO degree and cyber security degree program. Such programs that combine business management and technology skills do not exist in China. They also wanted to learn more about the masters in technology management program advisory board, which is made up of industry leaders and program alumni. The quarterly meetings of the advisory boards focus on current topics that should be integrated into the program.

The Chinese delegation is participating in a three-month program with George Mason’s School of Policy, Government and International Affairs to learn about various aspects of higher education in the United States, advance their teaching skills, and sharpen their knowledge of English.

The professors come from universities in the Jiangsu province which is a coastal province north of Shanghai including from universities in Nanjing, Suzhou, Changzou and Yangzhou. They hope to eventually teach their classes in English using modern instructional methods that prepare students in technology fields to meet the changing demands of businesses and employers, and that encourage entrepreneurship.

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Mary Crowson

Mary Crowson is a program operations specialist for the Research Partnerships and Grants Initiative within George Mason's School of Business.

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