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Microsoft in-kind gift to WVU business school tops $245,000

West Virginia University’s College of Business and Economics will receive an in-kind gift valued at more than $245,000 from the Microsoft Corporation.

The gift was given through the Microsoft Dynamics Academic Alliance program, and consists of two kinds of accounting software plus annual support for that software.

“This generous gift from Microsoft will be very beneficial for the continued advancement of B&E’s accounting program,” said Dr. Jose Sartarelli, Milan Puskar Dean. “Our business school has a great reputation in the area of accounting, and this software will be instrumental in the continued high level of preparation for students in the program.”

The Microsoft Dynamics Academic Alliance is a global program that provides no-cost licenses to educational institutions that want to use Microsoft Dynamics software for teaching or research purposes.

“The Microsoft Dynamics Academic Alliance is in place to help schools utilize technology in their curriculum,” said Lyndsey G. Creamer, DynAA program manager. “We look forward to an ongoing relationship with West Virginia University and appreciate your commitment to implementing technology in the classroom.”

Dr. Richard Dull, associate professor of accounting at B&E, helped make the gift a reality.

“Initially, the software will be used in Accounting Systems courses, but it certainly won’t stop there,” said Dull. “Students will have multi-semester exposure to the enterprise system, and will also have the capability to use the software for learning concepts related to internal controls, fraud and error detection.”

He added that the MIS (Management Information Systems) Department has expressed interest in using the software in the classroom as well.

“The software will help us teach more than just the theoretical side of accounting,” Dull said. “This is a link to the real world, a system that thousands of employers use. Once students are introduced to an enterprise system, such as Dynamics, they can use that knowledge as an accountant, auditor or manager for almost any organization. The software helps provide the information you need to manage an organization in areas such as financial management, manufacturing and operations. It also has extensive data analysis capabilities. It’s software we can use to help our students learn to manage an entire enterprise.”

The contribution was made in conjunction with A State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University. The $750 million comprehensive campaign being conducted by theWVU Foundation on behalf of the University runs through December 2015.