NISGTC finds that getting local business and industry to actively lead a program's focus and curriculum, rather than passively advise, produces positive results for students. BILT (Business and Industry Leadership Team) defines the knowledge, skills, and abilities business representatives want to see in future graduates and assists the colleges in numerous ways including student recruitment and hiring, class presentations and keynotes at conferences, traditional internships and now virtual internship/externship experiences using business mentors.
BILT teams are comprised of high-level executives and technicians, from large corporations and small companies alike, who understand the current state of the industry and what skills get students hired. The NISGTC BILT model is based on the work of the NSF Convergence Technology Center’s BILT that has guided the work of that Center for over 10 years.
The goal is to avoid the pitfalls of traditional business advisory councils that often review curriculum just once a year and may or may not be comprised of business leaders familiar with the desired workforce skills. The benefits for students are obvious, but why would a business or company participate in a BILT?
For the business leader, an engaged BILT can:
For information on creating and maintaining a BILT for your area, download the National Convergence Technology Center's BILT Guide.
For an overview of the BILT by the OCCRL, download it here.
NISGTC's four BILT groups (one for each IT area of Programming, Networking and Convergence Technology, Cybersecurity and Geospatial Technologies) met quarterly to guide the work of the consortium.
The Networking BILT focused on all that is encompassed by networking and convergence technology, which integrate in the convergence arena through IT segments, and software companies. Key businesses involved in the BILT were: Aastra, AMX, Alcatel-Lucent, ADT Security Systems, Cisco, Citrix Systems, Comerica Bank, Dell, EMC Corporation, Intel, InterLink, IPCelerate, Juniper Networks, Lockheed Martin, Phillips Healthcare, Raytheon, TDI Technologies, Telecom Electric Supply, Texas Instruments, The I.S. Group, Tyco Integrated Security, VCE and VMWare.
The Cybersecurity BILT focused on the many facets of cybersecurity. Key businesses involved in the BILT were: Raytheon, Cisco, ATT, AMX, Secure Works, Texas Instruments, Juniper, Homeland Security and Radium.
The Geospatial “GIS” BILT focused on areas of GIS such as, mapping, surveying, remote sensing, and drones. Key businesses involved in the BILT were: Frontier Surveying, Geoshack, Freese and Nichols, Digital Mapping, and many employees with Cities across the nation.
The Programming BILT focused on the following areas; Mobile App (iOS, Android, Windows), Database and Business Intelligence. Key businesses involved in the BILT were: Marlin Mobile, Cisco, Microsoft, Costco, and AMX.