About Us

Olayele Adelakun Ph.D

Olayele Adelakun is an Assistant professor of MIS at DePaul University Chicago, Illinois, College of Computing and Digital Media (CDM). His research focuses on IT Outsourcing, ERP systems implementation, and Information Systems Quality and Evaluation.

He has conducted case studies in both medium size companies and multinational companies in Finland and the United States. He has chair several academic and industry focus conferences. He started the study abroad program in the school CDM in 1993. He has also conducted several executive presentations.

He has published over forty articles in conferences, books and journals. He holds an M.S. in Information Processing Science from University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland and Ph.D. in Information Systems from the Turku School of Economics and Business Administration, Turku, Finland

Joshua Atian

Currently, I’m an undergraduate majoring in information technology at the College of Computing and Digital Media. I was born and raised on Chicago’s far northwest side in the Jefferson Park neighborhood. I got a taste of computing technology when I was in high school at Lane Tech College Prep High School, where I learned foundational concepts in Java, C++, and SQL. It wasn’t quite enough to become proficient, but I understood a few of the key aspects of computer science with exposure to the fundamentals.

Before transferring DePaul University, I was enrolled at Wilbur Wright College, which is one of the City Colleges of Chicago. I served in the United States Army as an intelligence analyst prior to pursuing higher education, and I was deployed from 2008 to 2009 to Baghdad in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom 08-10. I attended a class taught by Professor Adelakun when he introduced the cluster model for business, specifically the information technology cluster in Silicon Valley, to some of his CDM students. This seemed like a unique approach to study a very peculiar topic, and a great opportunity to explore careers offered by technology companies located in California.

Following graduation, my hope is to study the graduate program in Predictive Analytics offered at CDM. When I’m not at school, I also lead kayak outings as a guide during the summer and snowshoe outings during the winter. I’m an ardent fan of Chicago’s professional sports teams, especially the Blackhawks, Bears, Bulls, and Cubs.

Danny Cao

Danny Cao is a junior at DePaul University and majoring in Information Systems with a concentration in analysis. He has lived in Chicago all his life. He has been working as an IT Technician for the past 5 years at Truman College, a City College of Chicago. After he graduates, he hopes to land a job as a Systems Analyst or IT Auditor in Chicago. Shortly after, he plans to get his graduate degree in Information Systems with a concentration in project management.

His role during the Silicon Valley trip was to study and analyze how the IT cluster generated sophisticated demand conditions locally and nationally. Danny plans to use the knowledge gained from the trip in his future endeavors in the IS field.

He has a large collection of PS3 games and keeps up with gaming and technology news. He is excited for the release of the PS4. His favorite games include Mass Effect 2, Uncharted 2, The Last of Us, and BioShock. He loves eating the chicken bowl at Chipotle and is often seen in the wild eating it at DePaul University, his natural habitat. Danny is usually at the CDM lab doing homework or browsing Imgur and Reddit looking at funny cat and dog images and gifs.

Kyle Corral

My name is Kyle Corral.  I’m a student at DePaul University. I’m working towards a double major in computer science with a concentration in software engineering and computer game development with a concentration in systems programming.  I have greatly enjoyed my time at DePaul and this trip has been one of my favorite experiences.  I have been at DePaul for three years and plan to finish in the spring of 2015.

When I’m not working on coursework, I am working on a game with friends we call “My Best Friend is a Platform”. We are planning to release in the summer of 2014 on the computer. In that project, I am the lead programmer.  I am also working on a small personal game when my time allows me to.

I have lived near Chicago my whole life, but hope to move to Silicon Valley when I am finished with undergrad.  I have a younger brother, Nathan, and younger sister, Kristen, who I am very close to with.  At home, we have two dogs and a cat. Downtown, in my apartment, I have my cat, Oliver, who has been with me since I was seven. My hobbies include playing bass guitar and playing video games with my friends and brother.

Alberto DiMichele

Alberto Di Michele is a graduate student at DePaul University studying Information Systems with a concentration in Business Web Analysis & Development. After studying computer science and engineering as an undergraduate at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Alberto interned and worked at several Chicago area start-up companies before attending graduate school full-time.

In addition to his graduate studies, Alberto works as a technical consultant to various groups including local villages, tech-focused individuals, and political groups.

Alberto plans to use his experiences from Silicon Valley (also Italy, France, Brazil, & Canada) to start a international career in product/business development while focusing on the technology start-up industry. He hopes to receive his MBA after completing his MS at DePaul.

Daniel Glownia

Daniel Glownia is pursuing a Computer Science degree with a concentration in Software Engineering at DePaul University’s College of Computing and Digital Media. He also participated in an IT-Cluster course that used Michael E. Porters framework to research the affect an IT-Cluster has on innovation. During the trip Daniel was responsible for gathering information about specialized university centers and how they contribute to innovation in the IT-Cluster.

His love for making software that is efficient and easy to use has lead him to developing apps for android. Smart Ringer is one of the recent apps he and his friend have developed. It automatically changes the phones volume settings based on the users location, calendar, and/or predefined time blocks. In addition to Smart ringer, Daniel develops productivity apps for wearables like Google Glass.

Daniel is also a resident advisor at DePaul University’s Monroe and Belden Resident Halls. As a resident advisor he is responsible for the wellbeing of 58 students on his floor. This includes creating community building activities and events for the students. Throughout his activity planning he is committed to incorporating technology. For example, with one of the bulletin boards for the beginning of the school year, Daniel chose to create instructions on how to connect to the internet as well as accessing ones DePaul email.

Jack Piontek

Jack Piontek is currently a senior at DePaul University in Chicago, pursuing a degree of Computer Science with a specialization in Software Engineering. He is also minoring in Video Game Development. He was born and raised in Chicago suburbs, and has finally moved to the City to further his education. Before transferring to DePaul, he took classes at the College of Lake County, and participated in the Lake County Tech Campus program in High school.

His role during the Silicon Valley trip was to focus on Related and Supporting Industries relevant to the Cluster, as well as putting the entire site together.

Upon graduation, he hopes to find a job at an IT Company somewhere in either Chicago or Silicon Valley, where he can apply his coding skills and learn something new every day.

Dean Shahed

Dean Shahed is a senior finishing his Bachelors in Computer Science at DePaul University. Before he transferred to DePaul, he finished his associate’s degree in Computer Networking at Robert Morris University. Dean plans on completing his MBA so he can have the business education to go along with his technological knowledge and experience. Dean has a diverse set of skills ranging from mobile application development to computer networking. He also has experience in project management and product development and hopes to further pursue that career field in the future.

In his free time, Dean likes to watch Liverpool FC, DJ, play video games, and play around with tech devices. In his spare time, Dean likes to install custom Android OS ROMs on his devices and help debug and test software for developers on XDA developer forums.

Dean’s favorite part of visiting Silicon Valley was when the group made a quick stop at Sony’s SCEA headquarters in Foster City, CA. He plans on using his experience from the Silicon Valley trip to further his progress in achieving his dreams.

Blake Trchka

My name is Blake Trchka, and I am an undergraduate senior studying Information Technology with a concentration in network security at DePaul University. I currently work both for the university, in my role as a Building Manager with Student Centers, as well as working for an event production company, designing and producing sound, lighting, projection, and staging for special events.

In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my dogs, and keeping up with the latest episodes of The Simpsons, of which I am a huge fan.

I chose to attend this trip with the goal of broadening my knowledge of the IT industry, and the roles and relationships within the industry. This trip provided this, and much more.

Upon my graduation, I am seeking an active role in the IT industry with a corporation or a university.

Grant Weiss

My name is Grant Weiss, I am currently studying interactive media and Graphic design at DePaul University in Chicago Illinois. I come from a small town and have always loved music. In fact my biggest inspiration for my music derives from my home.

Some of my biggest achievnents include opening for KC and the sunshine band, Eddy Money, Brandon Marx, and have done a mini tour of the Midwest   and Other than music I have always been fascinated by technology and video games. My first interaction with a computer was when I was 5 years old, I accidentally opened the command prompt somehow and started typing away before my baby 5 year old hands were caught by my mother, and I was taken away. Ever since then I have been interested and began to learn for myself to dive into technology.

I started to become a jack of all trades, dabbling in many areas of technology, such as CAD, design, programing, even building custom computers. after first discovering a computer at a very young age, to actually be able to manipulate them properly now, I love. DePaul and the interactive media program is great. We are a new major and we continue to do what I love. My best personal quality Is that I am a people person. I enjoy the synergy of people very much and believe it is important to support a healthy team. I soon hope to be working as a project manger, or team leader as I am confident in my leadership ability.

Justin White

Justin White is an aspiring Software Engineer and Web Developer. He has a passion for technology which began at the age of four when he got his first Hewlett Packard computer. While studying at DePaul University, followed his passion into the world of computer programing and web development. Traveling to Silicon Valley and getting to gain a sense of the community there has only fueled his passion and desire to pursue a career in the computing and technology industry.

Other interests outside of computes include trying new restaurants, traveling, listening to music, and exploring the natural world. Justin also has a passion for nature and the outdoors.

You can find him on the tops of mountains snowboarding in Colorado, or backpacking in Yosemite National Park.  Or you can find some of his projects at www.github.com/sirjustinwhite or at his personal website www.sirjustinwhite.com.