Sheffield Hallam University has established a 'centre of excellence' for SAP degrees aimed at equipping future SAP consultants with relevant and up-to-date skills in the business software.
The new centre will feature teaching and research labs and facilities, including a physical SAP HANA box, which could also be a source of revenue for the university.
Sheffield Hallam is opening the centre with the launch of three SAP Masters degrees. The first, Strategic Enterprise Systems, Business Transformation and Management, will start taking on students in January.
"It's something very good for a conversion course for computer science [students] to become an SAP consultant," said Martin Gollogly, who heads up University Alliances at SAP.
The first course will focus on SAP software such as BusinessObjects and HANA. The university has added other angles, such as project consultancy, PRINCE2, cloud systems and user integration, said Stephen Lofthouse, senior lecturer in business computing and SAP at the university.
Meanwhile, the university is looking into running research projects using the on-premise SAP solutions, such as the HANA box. For example, local companies interested in using the analytics technology have enquired about trying out the software at the university first, before they make the leap to investing in SAP.
The new Masters degrees are not the first SAP courses run at Sheffield Hallam. The university has a long-standing relationship with SAP, becoming the first member of the SAP University Alliances programme in 1998. It is also the first member of the global SAP Student Academy programme, which launched last year.
Professor Roger Eccleston, pro vice-chancellor for the Faculty of Arts, Computing, Engineering and Science at the university, said: "The emphasis will be on students developing tangible skills in SAP solutions, alongside an understanding of business and systems concepts, in order to produce graduates with exceptional business and technical expertise."
Cormac Watters, managing director of SAP UK & Ireland, added: "The launch of several specialist SAP-themed degrees with multiple certifications is intended to give students a deep understanding of multiple aspects of SAP software, and of the importance of design, integration and simplification."
The course will be a 12 to 18 months full-time course. Twelve months will be taught, and then students will have six months to complete a dissertation. It will also be ratified as a part-time, on-premise course.
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