Students Bring Home Six Awards at AITP

PROVO, Utah – Apr 20, 2017 – Fingers flashed across computer keyboards and eyes skimmed screens as more than four hundred students participated in tech competitions as part of the annual Association for Information Technology Professionals conference in St. Louis.

After three days of events, BYU students stood out among the forty-seven universities in attendance, claiming a total of six awards.

Only six students, all from the IS program, represented BYU this year including Brandon Buchanan, a first-year masters student from Centerville, Utah; Dylan Eastman, a junior from Cedar City, Utah; Thomas Fisher, a junior from Salt Lake City, Ashton Murray, a junior from Draper, Utah; Spencer Price, a junior from South Jordan, Utah; and Jason Smith, a first-year masters student from Forest Grove, Oregon.

“The fact that six students were able to collectively bring home six awards is pretty cool,” Buchanan says. “I think it speaks a lot to our program.”

While other schools brought numbers of students ranging from ten to thirty, BYU still came home with the second-most awards among all schools. BYU entered the visual studio development, database design, systems analysis and design, business analytics, and security competitions and received awards in every category.

“We’ve been to this competition for many years, and our students have always done well; this was no exception,” says Conan Albrecht, information systems professor and faculty advisor. “These students were wonderful. They spent a month and a half preparing for it, and when they got there they went to work. They did phenomenal.”

Fisher and Buchanan clenched the first place title in the Visual category. They were given a scenario where people were having a hard time getting tickets to an event because companies would buy them in large quantities and then resell them. Their task was to create a web application that allowed a company to randomly choose a lottery winner based on people who previously signed up.

“The IS program and professors gave us the tools that we needed to compete in this competition,” Fisher says. “These competitions are real-world problems and things we will face and see in our careers. We felt very prepared because we do similar things in our classes throughout the year.”

Below is a breakdown of the BYU awards:

Visual Out of 29 competing teams, first place - Thomas Fisher and Brandon Buchanan

Database Design: Out of 69 competing teams, second place -Thomas Fisher and Brandon Buchanan and honorable mention - Dylan Eastman and Spencer Price

Systems Analysis and Design: Out of 29 competing teams, second place - Dylan Eastman and Spencer Price

Business Analytics: Out of 26 competing teams, honorable mention - Jason Smith

Security:  Out of 93 contestants, honorable mention - Jason Smith

Dylan Eastman, Spencer Price, Thomas Fisher, Brandon Buchanan, Ashton Murray, and Jason Smith proudly hold their six awards.
Brandon Buchanan and Thomas Fisher wowed the judges in the visual and database design categories, taking first and second place, respectively.
Dylan Eastman and Spencer Price raise their second place trophy for systems analysis and design while holding their database design honorable mentions.

Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Tessa Smith