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Dow Chemical Adds
$375,000 to Business Funding

Dow presentation
The Dow Chemical Company has added a $375,000 gift to Sam Houston State University's College of Business. Making a check presentation to Ross Quarles, left center, is Roland Hendricks, a 1980 SHSU graduate who is now global supply chain controller for Dow. Also participating in the presentation in the Dow Technology Demonstration Center were James F. Gaertner, right, SHSU president, and R. Dean Lewis, left, dean of the College of Business.

A recent Dow Chemical Company grant of $375,000 to Sam Houston State University's College of Business Administration brings the amount that company has provided for the latest in business software and computer equipment to more than a half million dollars.

The most recent gift will allow SHSU to integrate enterprise resource planning (ERP) into the SHSU business curriculum using SAP R/3 software obtained with an earlier Dow grant for the Dow Technology Demonstration Center in the Smith Hutson Business Building.

According to Ross Quarles, author of the grant proposal and project director for the College, SAP is the leading enterprise resource planning system in the world today and is being used by over 6,000 companies in over 50 countries. SAP stands for Systems, Applications and Products in Data Processing. The company was founded in 1972 by five former IBM employees and now has world headquarters in Walldorf, Germany.

"SAP R/3 software provides an enterprise-wide set of management tools and systems that balance demand and supply, link the enterprise, its customers, and its suppliers into a complete supply chain, and enable managers to link and access every item of enterprise data affecting a particular decision-making situation," said Quarles.

"SAP enables high degrees of cross-functional integration among sales, marketing, manufacturing, operations, logistics, purchasing, finance, accounting, new product development, and human resources. Implementation of SAP facilitates business process re-engineering to allow all data within the organization to be shared as needed across functional areas of responsibility."

Using SAP, a decision maker can view and manipulate data ranging from the complete enterprise down to the smallest unit in the organization for which data are recorded, Quarles said. The SAP system comes configured with 14 languages ranging from English to Kanji (with other languages possible) and an unlimited number of currencies which enhance its status as a truly global system.

Dow's initial grant of $170,000, received in 1999, allowed the College of Business Administration to construct and equip the Dow Technology Demonstration Center in the Smith Hutson Business Building. This Center is equipped with a 2.5 terabyte dedicated server system and related hardware and software support systems on which SAP and other software systems operate.

The initial grant allowed SHSU to join the SAP University Alliance through which the university obtained SAP R/3 software to be used for educational instruction purposes. Sam Houston joins six other universities in Texas and approximately 90 universities throughout the United States and 60 foreign universities that are members of this alliance.

The new grant from Dow will primarily be used to fund SAP training for faculty and for summer grants to enable faculty members to develop SAP-based instructional materials to integrate into the content of their courses, said Quarles.

"The objective of this integration is to provide business students with the skill sets and tools necessary to interface with SAP (and other ERP systems) in order to use such systems as tools to support decision making in operating, planning, monitoring, financing, controlling, and auditing business enterprises," he said.

"The objective of these SAP-specific courses will be to provide students with an introduction to the skills required for managing the operations of SAP and other enterprise resource planning systems."

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SHSU Media Contact: Frank Krystyniak
April 23, 2002
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