Monday, September 17, 2012

IBM Academic Initiative System z Announcements

Dear educator,

The IBM Academic Initiative System z has a few quick announcements that may be of interest to you and your students this semester:

1.  IBM Master the Mainframe Contest

Registration for the 2012 IBM Master the Mainframe Contest is now open!  This year, the IBM Academic Initiative System z team is giving away over $50,000 in prizes, including ASUS Transformer Pad Infinity tablets, expenses-paid trips, custom T-shirts (featuring the zEnterprise EC12 mainframe, which was just announced on August 28) and a ton of swag! Plus, tons of great technical challenges to give your students hands-on experience and sought-after skills.

Contest homepage:

Students can access the simple registration form from that page.  We also put a link to a printable PDF Flyer on the homepage to help promote the contest to your students.  

The contest, which begins on October 1, is an educational tool that progresses in difficulty and prize value as contestants complete a variety of tasks, logging into a remote mainframe system from their own workstations.  Many professors offer the contest as extra credit or a mandatory assignment -- if you are interested in receiving reports on your students' progress to help with your grading, you can request them from me (Mike Todd - at any time.  The contest runs through December 28.

This year, the custom Master the Mainframe Contest T-shirt (the prize for being among the first 2,500 contestants to complete Part 1) will feature "tour dates" on the back, which will match the hometowns of the 50 schools that have the most registrants as of October 1.  

You can connect with other students and educators, and keep up with the latest contest announcements, on our contest Facebook page:

Students will also be encouraged to use their mainframe skills to help them apply for the jobs on our System z Job Board at

2.  Destination z Enterprise Computing Scholarship

This semester, the IBM Destination z community will be accepting student applications for the fifth annual Destination z Enterprise Computing Scholarship (see last year's winners
here).  This scholarship is awarded to students at Destination z member schools who have demonstrated excellence in their mainframe coursework, and who plan to continue their academic and professional development on the platform.  If your school is interested in joining Destination z so that your students will be eligible for the scholarship, please visit the simple enrollment form.  Further instructions will go out to Destination z member schools when the student application window opens in October.

3.  IBM Academic Initiative System z Facebook page

If you'd like to keep up on the latest IBM Academic Initiative System z news, please follow us on our
Facebook page.  We encourage you to post information about your own enterprise computing programs there as well!

We hope to see you on Facebook, and to see your students winning scholarships and Mastering the Mainframe this fall.  Best wishes for a successful semester!

Best regards,


Michael C. Todd
IBM Academic Initiative System z

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