Data and Domino’s: Computer Information Systems Intern Reilly Bowen Bridges the Gap
Computer Information Systems junior Reilly Bowen was presenting a major project in front of the Chief Information Officer (CIO) and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Domino’s Pizza. He needed to explain this complex technical project in a way that everyone would be able to understand. The catch? He only had seven minutes to do it.
“This is where I learned how to present a technical project to an audience that may not understand it,” Bowen said. “This proved to be very challenging for me. It was difficult squeezing a ton of information into a seven-minute presentation, all while making it easy to understand.”
During Summer 2017, Bowen was an Enterprise Information Management Intern at Domino’s corporate headquarters in Ann Arbor, Michigan. His main project for the summer was to create a tool that would allow Domino’s team members to better understand the data they were using.
“I spent a lot of time creating a tool to help employees easily search through company metadata. This gave me a solid understanding of how different areas of the company use data,” said Bowen. “From here on out, Domino’s team members can quickly search and learn about any information or data that is used within the enterprise.”
This role allowed Bowen to learn both technical skills and soft skills. He was in charge of creating the tool, as well as explaining it to others. Usually, those he needed to share it with did not have an understanding of the technical facets, which meant Bowen needed to be ready to bridge the gap between his area of expertise and theirs.
“Every two weeks, I had to present a status report to our Executive Vice President for IT. He often gave me feedback and tips for taking something technical and explaining it to an executive. I also had to present my project to our CIO and CEO. Between the presentation and the status reports, I became much more comfortable discussing technical subjects to an audience who may not have a deep understanding of the topic.”
I became much more comfortable discussing technical subjects to an audience who may not have a deep understanding of the topic.
While building this tool, Bowen also needed to host numerous meetings and seek the input of others within the organization. Because of this, Bowen relates to the Ferris Core Value of “collaboration” and believes it is important in any professional environment.
“This summer, I learned how crucial it was to reach out to other team members. If I had not collaborated as much as I did, I would not have learned nearly as much.”
Bowen also values “opportunity,” another Ferris Core Value. He urged students to apply to as many internships as possible and to take advantage of any opportunities that may further their careers.
“I made it my goal to apply to at least two a day until I got one. I sent my resume to 34 different companies before I finally landed one.”
In the future, Bowen plans to seek a second internship through Domino’s corporate headquarters, within the information security team or the data science team. His goal is to one day hold an IT Project Management position at a growing international organization.
The College of Business at Ferris State University provides career-oriented education, responding for over 100 years to the changing needs of the business world. The curriculum prepares graduates to deal with real issues as members and leaders of tomorrow’s workforce. Their Computer Information Systems program produces graduates who have a broad understanding of core business functions, competency in computer programming, knowledge of information technology infrastructure, and a sound foundation in systems analysis and design.