Across the University Alliances program we are very lucky in that we have a great many hard working, active and conscientious lecturers and professors who engage fully with SAP and with their students. The technology that SAP provides to univesities and the opportunities for co-innovation they provide are key. But it is the people - the lecturers that then take those resources and do somethig amazing - new courses, new ways of learning, new ways of thinking about how to inspire their students and engage with the community that makes all the difference. In the University Alliances program we have always known this to be true and so hand in hand with our new membership models (Associate Member universities and Student Academy concept) we are launching a new recognition program specifically for lecturers as individuals.
The award is know as Visionary membership and is allocated by the SAP University Alliances team based on recommendations from the local University Alliances managers. We will never have too many of these Visionaries - the aim is to only ever have around 50 per year created at any one time. Plus Visionaries are of limited duration - they will be allocated for a two year period from the date of award meaning in total we may have 100 globally. This is so that we can recognise particularly strong candidates that may emerge in time that at present we may not even know about. They are likely to get quite competitive!
However that isn't why they are being launched. They are being launched because we want to recognise that there are some lecturers that just go above and beyond, that consistently look for ways to improve the opprtunities of their students, and that clearly see SAP as lying at the absolute heart of those opportunities. Visionary membership will be awarded by University Alliances on the recommendation of University Alliances managers - they cannot be applied for - on the basis of merit. But the sorts of things we are looking for are: creativity in the application of technologies, creativity in reaching out to SAP and the SAP ecosystem, a deep understanding of multiple SAP systems and how students can make use of them to further their understanding of the ICT world, design thinking, engagement in pilot projects, engagement in competitions and co-innovation initiatives, attendance at academic conferences and most especially TechEd and SAPPHIRE.
If you are lucky enough to be invited to be a Visionary it will be our pat on the back to you as an individual and professional educator from a team that has experience of working with professionals across more than 1,350 universities worldwide. So it is quite an achievement!