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IT Project Assistance for Melbourne NFPs

16 June 2008 at 12:34 pm
Staff Reporter
Melbourne University is providing opportunities for Melbourne-based community organisations to have a team of final year Information Systems students implement an IT project for FREE!

Staff Reporter | 16 June 2008 at 12:34 pm


IT Project Assistance for Melbourne NFPs
16 June 2008 at 12:34 pm

Melbourne University is providing opportunities for Melbourne-based community organisations to have a team of final year Information Systems students implement an IT project for FREE!

The University of Melbourne’s Department of Information Systems is currently on the lookout for IT-based Industry Projects for Semester Two 2008.

Industry Projects involve final year Department of Information Systems (DIS) students (5 per team) working with individual organisations to identify and work on projects of value to that organisation.

VCOSS Clearinghouse Coordinator Kate Johnson says this is a great opportunity for community organisations to gain access to talented Information Systems students to help in the development of websites, databases or similar projects.

Students will spend around 120 hours each on a real-life problem/idea with an individual from industry as their "client", and an academic member of the department as an industry mentor.

Projects typically involve some kind of information systems development – for example:
– Small database systems
– Website design and development
– Requirements analysis (for larger projects)

The main criteria for selection include a stable industry partner/client, willing to provide a few resources in the form of committed staff, a real problem to solve, and a project of curriculum relevance. Unfortunately the students will be unable to work with clients based outside the Melbourne metropolitan area, as the process involves face-to-face meetings.

The best projects involve a blend of business and technology. They don’t ask for any financial contribution from clients. Through these projects the university hopes students can demonstrate that they have learned, and can integrate and apply, a number of skills, including:
– Team and project management skills, including project management documentation;
– Communication skills, written and oral;
– Technology skills;
– Business and systems analysis skills, including system documentation

VCOSS member Volunteering Victoria enjoyed great success when it involved a team of IT Systems students from the University of Melbourne in a web development project during the third quarter of 2007.

The team from the University of Melbourne completed the following:
– A full analysis of current weaknesses, and needs and identified future opportunities regarding online business strategies.
– Development of a strategic plan outlining recommendations and the benefits of implementing such recommendations.
– Development of an entirely new website.
– Implementation and activation of technical website functions.
– Development of a report and procedures manual that was utilised in a handover to Volunteering Victoria’s in-house web master and project co-ordinator.

Volunteering Victoria believes that the project was successful due to the clear timeline and the goals and outcomes that were developed, in an initial meeting, by all members of the partnership. This clarity of project priorities was constantly reassessed in the weekly meetings held and Volunteering Victoria suggests that such regular contact is vital, to reach the desired outcomes, of a complex and involved project.

Projects need to be registered by June 27

If you would like to register a project, please visit the project website at or for further information contact Greta Harrison on or 03 8344 1503.

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