Educator Hub User Group

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Introduce yourself!

  • 1.  Introduce yourself!

    Posted Tue February 09, 2021 01:45 PM
    Welcome to the Educator Hub! Please take a moment to introduce yourself in this forum.
    • Where are you located?
    • What classes do you teach?
    • What help are you trying to find here in the Hub!?


  • 2.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Tue February 09, 2021 01:48 PM
    I'll start! I'm Theresa Materise and I work for IBM's Z Ecosystem team. Specifically, I'm focused on building a community for our New to Z'ers (folks who have been working on the mainframe for less than 10 years), but I also help out moderating this Educator Hub. Reach out to me if you have any questions as you navigate this new space for educators in the IBM Z space!


  • 3.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Mon February 15, 2021 03:40 PM
    Hi, I'm Paul Fairbairn from the IBM Z Ecosystem Team, based in the UK. I have the privilege of working with academics, students and clients from across Europe on developing Z skills. If you are an educator in EMEA and you have any questions or comments regarding Enterprise IT skills development, IBM resources available to assist you or just want to say hello, please reach out to me.

    Paul Fairbairn

  • 4.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Tue February 16, 2021 07:15 PM
    Edited by Shelly Meierarend Tue February 16, 2021 07:14 PM
    Hello everyone!  I am Shelly Meierarend, IBM Z and LinuxONE Client and Academic Initative Skills Leader for Americas.  I have an amazing job where I get to work with Clients, Partners, Universities and Educators, to help build Z skills and talent, every single day!  I am honored to be able to work with so many of the industry's BEST!  I look forward to working in this new Z community space, just for educators! Let me know how I can help you, what content you would like here and together, lets grow this to be something amaZing!  Feel free to reach out and connect any time! 

    Shelly Meierarend

  • 5.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Wed February 17, 2021 09:18 AM
    Hi Theresa, 
    • I am located in Sydney Australia, which Yvette can vouch for!! 
    • a 3 year Bachelor of Information Technology (Mainframe) in partnership with Central Queensland University. Our Trainees are employed as a system or applications programmer by an IBM mainframe customer here in Australia/New Zealand. They receive a salary and all university fees paid over the 3 years. 
    • Spread our word and and receive feedback and up to date information and briefings on the upcoming  z16!!!
    thanks and  great initiative.

    Paul Matthews
    Business Development
    Strategitc Consulting Partnerships (SCP)
    North Sydney
    +61 411 888 390

  • 6.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Wed February 17, 2021 03:06 PM
    Edited by Reg Harbeck Wed February 17, 2021 05:11 PM
    Hello Theresa and everyone, I'm Reg Harbeck, an enthusiastic mainframe nerd and frequent educator. While my location is generally "virtual" my "real" address is in the southwest corner of Canada in a little town named Fort Langley, an hour's drive east of Vancouver.

    I teach mainframe courses about anything but databases, as I've worked with pretty much everything else, but I've never been a DBA. I also do services for the same range of products, and I write articles and give presentations and lead discussions, etc. My specialties include security, automation, workload automation, performance management, development and testing, Unix Systems Services, SMP/E, ISPF, REXX, and COBOL - among many others.

    I'm also working on my Master's Thesis about the humanity of the mainframe. And I'm an IBM Champion for Z since 2020. Google "Reg Harbeck" "Mainframe" to see what I've been up to.

    Always glad for opportunities to teach, present, or consult, and happy to have fellow mainframe contacts. I'm also especially interested in locating fellow Canadian mainframers because we're so well-hidden. That said, once travel is an option again, I love meeting mainframers around the world, and have done so on every continent but Antarctica so far (does anyone know any mainframers there?).

    Reg Harbeck
    Chief Strategist
    Mainframe Analytics Ltd.
    Langley BC

  • 7.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Fri February 19, 2021 11:16 AM
    Very pleased to meet you!

    My name is Darren Surch. I am honored to be named an IBM Champion by IBM. My company Interskill and I have dedicated ourselves to training the global mainframe industry workforce for over 30 years (cumulatively over 1 million mainframers trained!) via our curriculum of IBM Z mainframe focused elearning. The Interskill team are mainframers and mainframe training is all we do, so we are proudly "mainframe family"!

    Though Interskill's focus is training the key mainframe workforces of the world's mainframe orgs, we also collaborate with other mainframe educators and we also donate mainframe elearning to colleges, universities and other educational institutions.

    We all do better when the mainframe industry flourishes and the ongoing health and vibrancy of the mainframe industry depends on all of us making current and future mainframers as smart and talented as they can be. Let me know if I can help! 

    Please connect with me on LinkedIn and Twitter. If you're a mainframe educator, we should know each other!  :-)

    I'm an Australian now living in Charleston South Carolina in the United States.  
    Interskill has thousands of hours of elearning covering many hundreds of mainframe topics.

    Darren Surch
    Twitter: @Darren_Surch

  • 8.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Thu February 18, 2021 05:29 PM
    Hello All,

    I live in Austin, TX and I am a retired IBMer who evangelizes the mainframe through a presentation I give to high school and college students titled "IT's Best Kept Secret".

    I am not looking for help, but offering to make my presentation available to those who might want to use it. I am happy to get on a call/web conference to run through the presentation, and could be available to do a zoom or webex presentation of it to students. 

    I had two articles published last year telling my story, please have a look if your interested, and contact me if I can assist you in reaching out to students.

    TechChannel article:

    Enterprise Excecutive article:

    I look forward to seeing great things from this hub!

    Marc Smith
    Mainframe Education Consultant
    ProTech Training Corp.

  • 9.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Mon February 22, 2021 10:23 AM

    Hi everyone!
    I'm Marilyn Zeppetelli.  I am a full-time faculty member at Marist College in Poughkeepsie NY, where I teach several courses in z/OS topics for Marist's Institute for Data Center Professionals (IDCP) which provides training in data center technologies to IT professionals, and I'm also the technical director for the IDCP.  I also teach z/OS and other general computer science courses to our traditional undergraduate students.   We have a minor in Enterprise Systems available for our undergraduate Computer Science majors.   

    Previously, I was a software engineer at IBM (Poughkeepsie) from 1989-2009, where I worked in various capacities with MVS-OS/390-z/OS, including MVS Level2, Information Development, and z/OS systems programming.   From 2009-2011, I was the systems programmer for the z/OS Knowledge Center system (ZOSKCTR), an IBM Academic Initiative system hosted at Marist College. 

    I am happy to share my experiences teaching (and working with) z/OS with other educators. 

    Marilyn Zeppetelli

  • 10.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Fri February 19, 2021 08:54 AM

    Hello All!
    I'm Chiara Baldan, I live in Rome. When I started working (at the age of 21) I hadn't a clue on what mainframe was. All that I learnt was thanks to my colleagues and also to the customers I worked for. From each of the persons I meet I learnt a bit. The learning has never stopped, on mainframe it is an ongoing process, it never ends.

    Things since then hasn't much changed, very few students have heard of mainframe, and the ones that have , often thinks it is an obsolete technology and do not even want to have a look at it.

    In my working life I had three mentee coming out from high school/university to teach to become system programmers on mainframe. Then I had other colleagues to pass my knowledge regarding various aspects of the mainframe.

    I feel that it would be interesting to build up a 'starter kit' for anyone approaching the mainframe, something that could be used for instructors, students, managers, applications developers and system programmers. Something to make them understand the value of mainframe. Then it would be interesting to have some technical dive in specific aspects.

    Chiara Baldan

  • 11.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Mon February 22, 2021 08:55 AM
    Edited by Marilyn Zeppetelli Tue February 23, 2021 02:10 PM
    Looks like my intro got posted twice :(  Sorry about that!
    Marilyn Zeppetelli
    Professional Lecturer and Director of Enterprise Computing Education
    School of Computer Science and Mathematics
    Marist College, Poughkeepsie NY

  • 12.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Mon February 22, 2021 03:13 PM
    Hi, I'm Ludmila Salimena from the IBM Z Ecosystem Team, based in Brazil. I've been working with universities and client skills in LA for some years now.
    Please let me know if you are located in Latin America and if you need any assistance. ;-) 

    Ludmila Salimena

  • 13.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Tue February 23, 2021 02:41 PM
    I' m Cameron Seay and I work out of Durham, NC USA.  I teach an intro to mainframe course in addition to teaching COBOL.  I am looking for general academic resources in the mainframe space.

    Cameron Seay

  • 14.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Wed April 14, 2021 11:02 AM
    Hi, All!  I'm Cameron Seay and I work out of Durham, NC USA.  I teach COBOL and an intro to mainframe class.  I'm here to find general academic resources related to Z.

    Cameron Seay

  • 15.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Wed April 14, 2021 11:14 AM
    Hi, Everyone!

    I'm Geoffrey Decker and I'm an instructor in the Department of Computer Science at Northern Illinois University.

    I teach IBM 370 Assembler -- a requirement for all of our undergraduate majors -- and an upper-level mainframe course that includes JCL, QSAM and some advanced Assembler, how to use the COBOL Compiler, High-Level Assembler and the Binder, COBOL through table processing and with Db2 SQL and subprograms and linkage.  If we have time, we talk about mainframe security, VSAM and CICS.

    I'm here to participate in a group promoting what I consider to be a very important part of every software developer's education!

    Geoffrey Decker
    Northern Illinois University
    DeKalb IL

  • 16.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Wed April 14, 2021 12:46 PM

    Patryk Wójcik

  • 17.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Wed May 26, 2021 09:29 AM
    Hi.  I'm Louis Thomason.  I teach computer science at SUNY Ulster Community College.  I am a retired IBM'r having worked 30 years in system software development at the IBM Kingston NY Laboratory (near the Community College) and 10 years at IBM Somers NY and IBM Spain.

    I am interested in adding a Z series architecture unit to my Computer Architecture and Organization class this fall.  I would like to assign the students several Z Series assembler language projects using the LinuxOne Community Cloud.  Has anyone else done this and do you have any suggestions as to the best way to set this up?

    Louis Thomason

  • 18.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Tue August 10, 2021 01:30 PM
    Edited by Scott McFall Tue August 10, 2021 01:31 PM
    Hi Everyone,

    My name is Scott McFall.   I was honored to be announced as an IBM Z Champion this year.   I have worked in and around System Z and IBM mainframe believe or not since I was 10 years old.   My mother taught Data Processing at a local vocational school in the evenings so I used to audit her classes and learned Cobol on punched cards in the 1970s.   I now own ProTech Enterprise IT Training & Consulting.   We teach hundreds of mainframe courses and classes on mainframe ISV products.  We also offer bootcamp programs for new mainframe developers, systems programmers and operations staff.    Since 1990, ProTech has trained over one million students around the world!

    Scott McFall
    Vice President
    ProTech Enterprise IT Training & Consulting
    Pittsburgh PA

  • 19.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted 8 days ago

    Hello all,

    I am Andrew Tokash.  I worked at IBM Poughkeepsie NY for several decades in the Manufacturing  Engineering departments.  I was responsible for the creating the processes that assembled and tested the IBM mainframes.  I was also a programmer and a project manager.

    A few years ago I joined the faculty of Marist College, which is also in Poughkeepsie. The college has a GREAT partnership with IBM. I look forward to using the resources and contacts in this community!



    Andrew Tokash

  • 20.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted 7 days ago
    Hello there. I'm located in Izmir/Turkey..
    I have taught practically ALL computer science classes at Izmir Institute of Technology.
    Currently I am teaching CENG388, PHP programming and CENG422 Network Management classes.

    But I am excited about next term, because the class I proposed, CENG370 has been approved -- "Mainframe Programming".
    Although the title says Programming, I intend to also show some of its management as well - I was brought up on VM/SP and ESA ever since the EARN/BITNET days when I wrote the TRICKLE server.

    I intend to have students create Hercules virtual machines and do some administration and do some programming in Rexx and COBOL.

    Btw, I really enjoyed IBM's "Summer challenge" and I would like my students to follow it too, it's great for teaching the other mainframe OS's  as well.

    I have been collecting teaching material for the CENG370, and I could always use more. 

    Turgut Kalfaoglu
    turgut (at)

    Turgut Kalfaoglu

  • 21.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Wed May 26, 2021 09:29 AM
    Geoffrey,  I would be interested in the environment you recommend/provide for students in your Z Assembler class.  I have been thinking about trying to develop an environment on LinuxOne Community Cloud but there may be other more practical environments.

    Louis Thomason

  • 22.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Tue August 10, 2021 01:48 PM
    Congratulations, Scott.

  • 23.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted Tue August 10, 2021 02:07 PM
    Hey Scott



    MST Jorge Hofmann
    Coordinador Diplomatura
    Programación Grandes Computadoras
    Universidad Nacional de Tres de Febrero

  • 24.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted 8 days ago
    Welcome Andrew!  So glad to have you join us here!  Yes, I wholeheartedly agree that we have an amazing partnership with Marist College.  I enjoy working with the professors and team there.   Please feel free to add any information/content/sharing you would like to this community, we are excited to see it grow!

    Shelly Meierarend
    IBM Z & LinuxONE Client & Academic Initiative Skills Leader - Americas

  • 25.  RE: Introduce yourself!

    Posted 7 days ago
    Hope your CENG370 is a success,  Turgut.

    Please keep in mind that Hercules is  frowned upon by IBM.

    Should you wish to use it, you have to limit yourself and your students to VM/370, MVS 3.8J and the like.

    IBM does make access to modern systems available to students, mainly on systems hosted at MARIST college.

    All of the best with your mainframe teaching.