Meet the Advisory Board of the UW Bachelor of Science in Applied Computing

UW Extended Campus August 10, 2022

The online Bachelor of Science in Applied Computing is supported by an advisory board consisting of 8 to 12 representatives from the industry who serve as advisors, ambassadors, and referral agents to the program.

The advisory board meets bi-annually, and members provide constructive feedback regarding changes in the industry and how those changes affect program graduates. The meetings ensure the program and curriculum stays relevant to trends in applied computing. Board members are also asked to host students working on capstone projects, and create smooth school-to-work transitions, so that as students graduate from the program they will move to gainful employment.

The advisory board provides recognized leaders in the field with a unique opportunity to further shape the program and applied computing profession. Learn more about the Advisory Board Member Responsibilities and Advisory Board Guidelines.

If you’re interested in joining the advisory board, please complete the Advisory Board Member Questionnaire for consideration.  We’ll be in touch after submission regarding next steps.

Current UW Applied Computing Advisory Board Members


Vinny Carpenter, Vice President of Cloud and DevOps Engineering, Northwestern Mutual. Carpenter has 30 years of experience and substantial success in directing enterprise-wide software development, engineering, and architecture efforts in education, manufacturing, financial services, and investment management.  Carpenter has worked for large global multinationals to small entrepreneurial companies. He graduated from Marquette University in 1993 with a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering.


Fulton “Derrick” Edwards, President and Chief Technical Officer, AGS Systems. Derrick Edwards has over 35 years’ experience in the commercial software development, consulting, and data analysis industry. He received his Undergraduate Degree in Software Systems Design from the University of Alabama and his Master of Science in Computer Science from UW River Falls. At UW System he has worked on the UWRF Innovation Challenge, Innovator-in-Residence, and Bridgeway Scholars programs. He is a PADI certified Master Scuba Diver and photography enthusiast with an interest in shipwreck photogrammetry.


Hamed El-Afandi, Senior Program Manager, GE Healthcare. Hamed El-Afandi graduated from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee with a PhD in Computer Science.  He has been working for GE Healthcare as Senior Program Manager for over 19 years and teaching for over 11 years. Teaching topics include software design & architecture, software engineering, software verification and testing, capstone, program management, and high-performance computing.



Niti Jain, Software Engineer, Salesforce. Jain graduated from Texas A&M University with a masters in computer science. She has six years of experience as a software engineer. At Salesforce, she works in the Identity space focused on authorization and authentication at scale across Salesforce’s ecosystem. Her interest lies in the area of distributed systems, identity and machine learning.



Daniel Meighen, Senior Programmer Analyst, City of Green Bay. Daniel Meighen graduated from UW–Green Bay with a degree in Computer Science and from UW–Stout with a Master’s in Information and Communication Technology. As a Senior Programmer Analyst his primary focus is enterprise business analysis and full-stack development solutions. Much of his work has included financial systems, GIS development and integration, document management systems, workflow automation, and third-party software integrations. He also teaches courses for Rasmussen University’s School of Technology and has contributed to curriculum development.


Joe Pfiffner, Director of Information Technology, Sentry Insurance. Pfiffner graduated from Notre Dame with a degree in Management Information Systems and has his Master’s in Business Administration from UW–Whitewater.  He has worked for Sentry Insurance for 19 years, starting as a software developer, and has been Director of Software Development for the last 8 years.  His IT focus has primarily been on application development in Java and .Net, and he is also responsible for imaging solutions, publishing systems, document management systems, shared service applications, print/mail/scanning operations, various vendor platforms, remittance processing, and support of legacy mainframe systems.


Jason Poquette, Vice President of Platform Engineering, Virgin Pulse.  Poquette has worked in the IT industry for over 20 years.  In that time, he has had the opportunity to work at companies that range from small to Fortune 500 companies and lead small to large geographic dispersed teams.  The thing he has enjoyed the most about the IT field, is how fast it changes, creating constant new opportunities that hadn’t existed only a few years prior.


Todd Whitenack, Chief Information Officer/Vice President of Information Technology, Cellcom. Whitenack has 24 years of experience in the field of information technology. In his current position, he is directly responsible for all of IT, including the development and maintenance of all computer systems, IT purchasing, billing, mobile applications and the customer websites. Whitenack graduated from the State University of New York at Brockport with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science. He completed graduate work in computer science at the Rochester Institute of Technology. Whitenack began his career as a software engineer and worked his way to his most recent position as vice president and chief technical officer at One Communications in Rochester, New York.


Carl Schweitzer, Senior Software Development Engineer, Microsoft. Schweitzer graduated from UW–Green Bay with a degree in computer science. As an engineer, he works with some of Microsoft’s largest partners, advising and enabling them to ship new products and features to the cloud even faster. Schweitzer has 2 decades of experience in manufacturing and over 10 years of experience in building IoT applications. In addition to his professional experience, he speaks at local and regional software engineering conferences, and assists with running the Northeast Wisconsin Developers User Group and the Milwaukee Code Camp. He also volunteers at his local high school teaching Computer Science.


Brandon Ward, Manager of Data Science and AI/Automation, UW Health. Ward is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte with a degree in Applied Mathematics. In his current role, he works to manage a core group of data scientists and machine learning engineers, while driving forward machine learning, NLP, RPA and emerging technologies initiatives. Outside of work Ward enjoys spending time with his family, playing Rugby, and weightlifting.





Programs: Applied Computing