Clemson Computing Information Technology; Top Story

SAS analytics to power Clemson’s big data and cyber efforts


Analytics leader is Founding Innovation Partner of the university’s Watt Family Innovation Center

CLEMSON — Clemson University’s bold research goals and thousands of students and professors have gained a powerful ally — analytics leader SAS. Through a new educational partnership, SAS and Clemson will provide research, software, services and funding to the university’s Watt Family Innovation Center.

SAS-clemson-logosThe Watt Center vision is to transform student lives and the academic campus. Thanks to the new partnership, professors, students and researchers can access and apply advanced SAS Analytics, business intelligence, cybersecurity and data management software toward that mission. SAS also will provide teaching materials, onsite training for faculty and staff, and help developing analytical programs.

Professors will be able to easily integrate SAS software into coursework, giving students hands-on experience with this highly marketable skill. In fact, a study of 54 million employee profiles on identified “Knowledge of SAS” as the No. 1 career skill that translates into salary bumps.

The Watt Center promotes student engagement, interactive learning and partnership with industry and government. Tuesday, the center will recognize SAS as the sixth Founding Innovation Partner, joining Comporium Inc.; Haworth Inc.; Philips Lighting; Scientific Research Corporation; and SCRA.

“The Watt Family Innovation Center is a unique educational facility that quickly has become invaluable to our students and faculty and one of the most innovative in the nation,” said Clemson President James P. Clements. “This partnership with SAS, a leader in innovative software solutions, will allow us to better serve our university community, and we are very appreciative of their generous support of Clemson’s mission.”

“The Watt Center brings together students, faculty and industry in a hothouse for learning and research,” said SAS CEO Jim Goodnight. “With data and analytics at the heart of innovation today, that means Clemson can generate more of the talent in high demand worldwide.”

Market demand meets academic innovation

SAS’ longstanding efforts to prepare more graduates for the marketplace complements Clemson’s academic commitments exemplified in the Watt Center’s interactive, cross-discipline facility. This collaboration will advance education, innovation and economic developments significantly throughout South Carolina and the nation.

Clemson will receive access to SAS Visual Analytics, the company’s flagship data visualization and exploration tool. SAS Analytics software will help researchers discover the “why?” behind the data by uncovering hidden relationships and trends. Using predictive analytics and forecasting tools, they will dig deeper into “what-if?” and “what next?”

In addition, access to SAS Cybersecurity will support teaching and learning about how to detect suspicious network activity and thwart malicious intrusions.

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. SAS has been part of education for four decades, and collaborates with higher education institutions around the world to foster lucrative SAS skills.

Powering the ClemsonForward strategic plan

Clemson is classified as one of the nation’s most active research institutions (Carnegie Basic Classification R1). To sustain the resulting benefits for the state, region and students, ClemsonForward establishes priorities for research and identifies six innovation clusters for research.

One cluster is cyber-infrastructure and big data science, which includes cyber security, intelligent transportation and computational genomics, digital humanities, business analytics, connected mobility and data-enabled science, engineering and social science.

“The SAS analytics tools are a perfect fit for Clemson as we implement the university’s strategic plan around cyber-infrastructure and big data science,” said Todd Marek, executive director of the Watt Center. “The collaboration provides an important capability for the Clemson research community and I’m very appreciative of the relationship we have built with SAS.”


Watt Family Innovation Center
The mission of the Watt Family Innovation Center is to create an environment where collaboration between students, faculty and leaders from industry and government agencies generates ideas and solves complex problems. The Watt Family Innovation Center uses state-of-the-art information technology and special facilities to enable all Clemson University undergraduate and graduate students to think ahead of the curve, develop their own ideas with support from faculty mentors and connect to industry partners seeking new methods and solutions.

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®. SAS and all other SAS Institute Inc. product or service names are registered trademarks or trademarks of SAS Institute Inc. in the USA and other countries. ® indicates USA registration. Other brand and product names are trademarks of their respective companies. Copyright © 2017 SAS Institute Inc. All rights reserved.

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