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Responding to one of the fastest growing fields in today's economy, Old Dominion University's College of Business and Public Administration will introduce new bachelor's and master's degrees in electronic commerce.

The university is one of a select few institutions to offer a graduate degree and possibly the first university in the country to feature an undergraduate degree in the discipline.

"Old Dominion will be on the cusp of one of the most fundamental changes in business operations and strategy that has occurred since World War II," said President James V. Koch, who will teach an economics course in the new program.
"Indeed, some say it will change every aspect of how firms do business. Old Dominion students will be at the forefront of these changes and be poised to take advantage of them."

Beginning this fall, Old Dominion will introduce an e-commerce concentration in both its undergraduate and graduate programs. Also, a proposal is being forwarded to the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia to add new, free-standing degree programs in e-commerce, a process that takes approximately six months. The new degree programs should take effect in fall 2000.

Both the bachelor's of science and master's of science in e-commerce will provide students with extensive training and education in all facets of using technology to manage a business. Both programs consist of core technology courses, such as supply chain management, information systems and programming with C++, plus courses in major business components of e-commerce, including legal issues, data mining, marketing on the Internet and economics of e-commerce.

"Our programs will teach students to apply business principles to this new-frontier technology," said J. Taylor Sims, dean of Old Dominion's College of Business and Public Administration. "Through these courses and degree programs, we will provide students with the knowledge they need to keep pace with the revolutionary changes that are happening -- and about to happen -- in the business world."

A unique aspect of the Old Dominion program will be the E-Commerce Computer Lab and Center, a site and support center for area industry to work with students and faculty to develop and test e-commerce infrastructure. Coupled with the university's Career Advantage Program, which guarantees undergraduates an internship in their field of study, students in the new degree programs will receive hands-on experience and a close-up look at the rapidly changing technology impacting Internet business.

"Entire industries are being reshaped or even eliminated by e-commerce. Our students must be prepared to work and compete in such a world," noted Koch, adding that e-commerce is one of the areas of the country's economy where the most new jobs are available. "In 10 years, e-commerce majors will be as common as computer science majors are today," Koch said. "No school will be without one."

This article was posted on: February 1, 2000

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Old Dominion University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution.