SAS and FedEx Institute of Technology Collaborate to Grow Data Analytic Capabilities in the Mid-South Region

Pioneering training center will bring new talent to logistics hotbed

January 17, 2018

MEMPHIS, TN & CARY, NC - The FedEx Institute of Technology, located at the University of Memphis (UofM), has gained a powerful ally in its efforts to increase the size and technical sophistication of the Mid-South technology workforce. Analytics leader SAS is locating a first-of-its-kind training center at the FedEx Institute, offering the resources people need to gain valuable SAS® skills and certifications.

Experts from SAS, supported by UofM faculty, will collaborate to deliver SAS training using both classroom instruction and a virtual lab environment. Leaders from FedEx, the FedEx Institute of Technology and SAS will gather for a signing ceremony Wednesday, January 24, at the FedEx Institute.

In a recent survey, more than 87 percent of managers of individuals who attended SAS courses indicated that their employees become better at their jobs as a result of SAS training. Soon, Mid-South companies will benefit from this enhanced talent pool.

"Data analytics and business intelligence serve as the foundation for competition between cities and nations, especially with the advent of artificial intelligence," said Jasbir Dhaliwal, Executive Director of the FedEx Institute of Technology. "Our collaboration with SAS will create a talent pipeline to help our corporations and our city compete on this basis."

The FedEx Institute and SAS collaboration will increase the flow of data-savvy workers into the Mid-South region, which includes large cities such as Memphis, St. Louis, Nashville, Louisville and Jackson, MS. Within Memphis alone, 98 of the top 100 companies on the Fortune 500 have a footprint. The presence of the headquarters of FedEx, the world's leader in logistics and transportation, has created a thriving logistics industry in the area. Through emerging technologies research led by the FedEx Institute, Memphis is situating itself as an international leader in data-driven technologies.

The SAS course schedule will include content on SAS programming and advanced analytics topics. Courses will prepare students for the following professional certifications: SAS Certified Base Programmer, SAS Certified Advanced Programmer and SAS Certified Predictive Modeler Using SAS® Enterprise Miner™. The agreement marks the first SAS public training center at a university, and allows individuals to apply their organization's tuition reimbursement dollars to SAS training courses.

The tools, concepts and practices of analytics hold the key to understanding massive amounts of data and using this knowledge to make sound decisions. Whether it is optimizing distribution routes, fuel consumption, or supply chains for logistic companies; uncovering fraud in banking transactions; or using big data in health care solutions, the applications of data analytics transcends industry, creating high demand for experts in the field.

"The SAS training center at the FedEx Institute of Technology will not only help meet the analytics talent needs of Memphis-area organizations, but provide rewarding career opportunities for students and adult learners," said Sean O'Brien, Vice President of SAS Education.

The SAS Global Certification program has long been the standard for industries like banking and pharma. Launched in 1999 to validate SAS skills and knowledge, the program has awarded more than 118,000 SAS credentials to individuals in 77 countries.

SAS customers span more than 83,000 business, government and university sites, including 94 of the top 100 companies on the 2016 Fortune Global 500®. With a market that deep, a SAS big data, advanced analytics or data science credential fosters lucrative opportunities across industries. In a massive study of 54 million employee profiles, PayScale.com examined which career skills translated into salary bumps. SAS skills were No. 1.

About FedEx Institute of Technology

The FedEx Institute of Technology is an advanced technology and research organization that serves as the front door to the research infrastructure and innovation capabilities of the University of Memphis. It functions as a catalyst for interdisciplinary research and innovation in emerging technologies by supporting cross-campus research innovation clusters. The Institute is also home to the University's intellectual property and patent repository which is the focal point of technology transfer and licensing operations. The Institute enjoys a unique innovation partnership with FedEx, which sponsors the Institute for advanced research purposes. The Institute is the central hub for efforts to maintain a cutting-edge innovative environment in the Mid-South region. Any organization interested in growing their business intelligence can contact Cody Behles at cbehles@memphis.edu.

About SAS

SAS is the leader in analytics. Through innovative analytics, business intelligence and data management software and services, SAS helps customers at more than 83,000 sites make better decisions faster. Since 1976, SAS has been giving customers around the world THE POWER TO KNOW®.


Chuck Gallina | 901.678.1756 l cgallina@memphis.edu