Faculty Feature: Dell EMC's Bill Schmarzo Brings Big Ideas, Big Data into the Classroom
With the USF MBA program's central location in San Francisco, we have the unique privilege of being surrounded by business leaders, tech experts, and the world's most innovative minds. We're also fortunate to welcome many of these change-makers onto campus, as faculty, guest speakers, and lecturers. William "Bill" Schmarzo, Dell EMC, CTO Big Data Consulting Practice, is one leader who inspires and educates by bringing his real-world experience into the classroom.
Often called the “Dean of Big Data,” Bill’s expertise around data analytics puts him at the forefront of his field. He believes in the application of big data and advanced analytics to drive an organization’s key business initiatives. Prior to consulting as part of EMC Global Services, he was the Vice President of Advertiser Analytics at Yahoo, at the dawn of the online Big Data revolution. Today, Bill sets the strategy and defines offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services’ Big Data Practice.
Bill also team-teaches for USF's MBA Program with Mouwafac Sidaoui, Professor and Department Chair of the Business Analytics and Information System. His two classes are “MBA 6553 Analytics Consulting Project” and “MBA 6525 Big Data Strategy and Visualization.” And Bill believes USF's MBA program is ideally situated to offer students an education that won't just make them successful today, but also prepare them for tomorrow.
"It is not sufficient to train tomorrow’s business leaders to manage in today’s market," Bill says. "We must properly prepare our students to manage and lead in tomorrow’s markets, where new technology innovations hold the potential to disrupt business models and dis-intermediate customer and supply chain relationships. The USF MBA is uniquely positioned, in one of the most vibrant and innovative economies, to create those types of business leaders."
We must properly prepare our students to manage and lead in tomorrow’s markets, where new technology innovations hold the potential to disrupt business models and dis-intermediate customer and supply chain relationships. The USF MBA is uniquely positioned, in one of the most vibrant and innovative economies, to create those types of business leaders.
USF Executive Fellow Bill Schmarzo
In his classes, Bill aims to train business leaders to embrace analytics and data science as a business discipline, "as a business differentiator," he says. "Mouwafac and I teach the students to embrace a collaborative and innovative approach to transform organizations in becoming more effective at leveraging technology, data, and analytics to power their business models."
Teaching Big Data with Mouwafac also lends a special element to the class. Mouwafac and Bill integrate their real-world experience into their lessons, as both have enjoyed successful careers in top Silicon Valley companies. Mouwafac worked as an executive for Cirrus Logic, Hewlett Packard, and S1, where he focused on Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems and developing curriculums and online solutions for international clients; Bill has been responsible for identifying, developing and rolling out analytics, data warehousing and MDM service offering for Dell EMC for over 6 years, and has served on several boards as an advisor, including the city of San Jose Innovation Advisory Board, and DataRPM.
"We don’t just talk theory, but also provide exercises to apply the theory to real-world situations. As a result, our students are ready to contribute to an organization’s success immediately, and can bring skills and capabilities that can help them to contribute to the organization’s success on day one," he says.
eBusiness Class Professor William Kolb Encourages Group Interaction
"One of the most exciting as well as engaging (Information Systems) projects was in the eBusiness class. Our group had to come up with a theoretical company in any industry and provide web design mock-ups and financial forecast reports and deliver a presentation to ask for funding from an angel investor. The class was very engaging, and Professor Kolb encouraged group interaction during every session. The class would spend a good amount of time discussing the project and going over the weekly assignment deliverables. This eBusiness class definitely provided a great framework in understanding the process and workflow of building your own business online." —Information Systems student, Vernon Vergara MSIS ‘16