This past December, we met with the Indiana University Luddy School of Informatics, Computing, & Engineering "Serve IT Nonprofit Technology" group. The name is definitely a mouthful when you say it all together. But then again, so was the delicious Mother Bear's Pizza we had delivered to feed everyone.
As a graduate of the original IU Computer Science program, this trip brought back some old memories. One of those was the fact we were meeting in a former sorority house that I almost lived in. The sorority was on probation and they needed someone to take care of the building until their charter was reinstated. I didn't end up living there but it was still odd that it was now part of the School of Informatics, specifically Serve IT.
Serve IT is a group that provides seniors with real world capstone projects and non-profits with valuable, no-cost labor. This is a great way for students to learn before they land their first job. They go through a full project lifecycle and gain important team skills you can only get with collaborative projects.
I learned about this group on a college visit with my son, Ethan, and immediately saw the possibilities. Most of the projects they work on are traditional client websites. Back in my day we built full blown custom applications. But, while those were valuable, the challenges began after students graduated and nobody was around with the knowledge (or time) to support them. So now they stick to websites.
When I learned of these projects I immediately wanted to help and reached out to Una Thacker, the Interim Director. I offered free use of Marketpath CMS and our own developers to assist when needed.
Marketpath provides a full-featured, easy-to-use web content management system with a ton of bells and whistles. So, in addition to free labor from the students, Marketpath will provide a free site to the students and non-profits with the same features and unlimited support every Marketpath CMS user receives. This is just one more way for these charitable organizations to put more resources into fulfilling their missions.
And this makes us feel really good. There have been many non-profit clients we've helped over the years (like Children's TherAplay) but like any company, we're limited by time and resources and we still have to earn a buck. With the type of partnership we're forming with Serve IT, however, we don't have to provide the labor and can provide nearly unlimited sites for charitable organizations. I'd call that an all-around win for everyone.
Go ahead and get your site started in Marketpath CMS. When you're ready to take it live, just give us a holler and we'll flip some switches so the world can see it. The only thing we'll ask for is verification of your 501(c)(3) status.