Technology for every Degree

Misty Decker


Most everyone needs some skills in technology in order to do their jobs well, from artists using digital rendering to lawyers programming contracts in a blockchain and even school teachers using analytics to understand student needs. Future job roles will include more and more of these advanced technologies, requiring students to develop T-shaped skills with depth in their major and breadth in a wider variety of topics than ever before. Therefore it is imperative that universities give every student some exposure to modern technologies. But how to do that when technology is changing faster than the speed of curriculum development?

In this very fast presentation, Misty Decker will explain key technology trends including Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, Cloud and Cybersecurity. For each, she will demonstrate some surprising examples of how your students in even non-technical degrees will need to understand these technologies. She will provide concrete examples of how you can integrate classroom teaching, hands-on projects, independent study, workshops and research partnerships, leveraging industry partnerships to more easily adapt to the changing technical landscape.

Reviews of past attendees:
"This is the closest I've ever come to understanding Blockchain."
"I wish everyone in my university could see this presentation. We should be doing more inter-departmental collaborations."
"I didn't realize that there were so many free resources available from IBM. I have so many ideas, I just don't know where to start."
"Misty explains complex technologies in a way that everyone can understand, from technology newbies to technology pros."


Photo of Misty Decker

What happens when you find a job that leverages almost 30 years of experience in fulfillment of a lifelong personal mission? Misty Decker finds herself in exactly that position as the Program Manager of the Master the Mainframe contest. Since 1991, Misty has held a variety of technical, managerial and project management roles at IBM. Always eager to learn new things and attack new challenges, she has been a z/OS Release Manager, a Development Manager for IBM Z firmware, and led the IBM Z Customer Advocate program. A passion for students and education led her to join University Alliances, creating collaborative research opportunities between IBM and universities around the world including weather modelling, radio telescopes and medical records research. In the IBM Z Academic Initiative program, she worked with hundreds of schools to add technologies to the curriculum IBM clients needed most and ensuring students were connected to job opportunities. She currently manages the Master the Mainframe contest, known worldwide for broadening students’ perspective of the range of computing and providing them the credentials they need for top enterprise job opportunities. She has presented hundreds of times to high schools, universities and academic conferences, becoming known for her ability to explain complex technical concepts in ways that anyone can understand and her dedication to every student’s future.

Misty holds a BS in Mathematics from Virginia Tech and MS in Information Systems from Marist College. Misty is also active in the community, currently serving on the Board of Directors for Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union and singing alto in Cappella Festiva Chamber Choir. She is married with two children and lives in Rhinebeck NY.

Twitter @mistymvd

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