Students applying knowledge and skills to address real world issues in industry
By: Hailey Green
By: Hailey Green
What do you get when you combine a group of students from business and computing with experts from a major corporation? The answer is Extreme Orange, an incubator for computer programming projects with entrepreneurial potential. This multidisciplinary Creative Inquiry team led by Dr. Jim Martin and Dr. Sekou Remy in the School of Computing, assisted by Josh Doran, a graduate student in the MBA program, and Jianwei Liu, graduate student in computer science. IBM is the corporate partner. In addition to guidance by the Clemson faculty, the students benefit from technical and business advice provided by IBM mentors.
The project was named “Extreme Orange” to reflect its similarity to IBM’s “Extreme Blue” internships in which students work as a team to develop business ideas that address real-world problems. “IBM sees the Extreme Orange program within Creative Inquiry as a critical vehicle for IBM and Clemson to collaborate on next generation solutions. The emphasis of the Extreme Orange program is to ensure that students gain access to industry experts within IBM for joint collaboration on solving real-world problems,” Mr. Mac Devine, Vice President and CTO of Emerging Technology and Advanced Innovation, IBM Cloud Division stated.
IBM supports the Creative Inquiry project and provides a set of problems that are suitable for undergraduate students with programming skills. The project pairs computing students with business students who contribute to project management, marketing and commercial development. Extreme Orange thus gives undergraduate students opportunities to extend and apply their knowledge and skills in an environment that cultivates research, innovation and entrepreneurialism. “It is important to learn about the business technicalities of an idea and its implementation because there is not as much of a risk in the classroom as there is in the real world,” Doran explained.
This year, the team had three projects. Project Sol worked on developing an application to record the level of sunlight over long periods of time, with the goal to be able to predict the solar power capacity of a specific location. In Project Queue Warning, students explored the prediction of traffic queue formation. Their goal was to provide warning alerts to approaching vehicles in near real-time. Project Kite is developing a modeling tool for emerging connected vehicle technology systems. All three projects are continuing beyond this year and will be incorporated into ongoing Clemson research efforts.
The relationship benefits the sponsor as well as the Clemson students. “The IBM mentors working with the Extreme Orange students also get an opportunity to validate new technologies under development and determine their viability from both a technical and business perspective,” Devine said. He and others at IBM look forward to continuing this mutually beneficial Creative Inquiry project with a new group of students in the coming year.
In partnership with IBM
Barbara J. Speziale