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Meditation Centre (MC) Project Description
A popular meditation centre (MC) in Queensland offers several mediation courses on donation basis to people in Queensland as well as all over the world. This non-profit organisation was established in the 1990s and is funded by a combination of charitable donations ($40,000 to $50,000 per annum) and the annual state and federal grants of ($100,000). MC has a basic website used primarily to advertise their courses and promote their services. The core functions of their operations are predominantly manual and labour intensive with limited use of computers. They use spreadsheets to record their transactions.
Due to increased popularity and demand, their workload has now doubled. It is envisaged to continue growing by 10% – 20% in the next 2-3 years. The board members have decided to implement an information system with a database that would not only improve its current operation but also cater for future demand.
The following is a description of their activities and requirements.
At the beginning of the calendar year the meditation centre publishes the details of all the courses that they offer. Now they offer three days, ten days and thirty days courses. The three days and thirty days courses are offered only to the old students. Ten days courses are offered to new as well as old students. An old student is someone who has done at least one ten days course earlier.
The registration of a course begins two months in advance prior to the commencement of the course. So, a date must be mentioned when the registration process starts.
A person can register for a course as a student. A person can also register to serve in a course and called a server. Only old students can serve in a course.
Students should be adults i.e. above the age of eighteen and are required to stay in the centre throughout the course duration. The centre provides each student free lodging and boarding. At the moment the centre can accommodate only twenty-six (26) males and twenty-six (26) females. Please note that even though the centre offers males and female courses together, complete gender segregation is maintained in lodging and boarding. An advertised course remains open for registration until it reaches the full registration (i.e. twenty-six students each.) Once a course becomes full, centre continues to accept the registration up to seven more and puts them in a waiting list indicating clearly to the registered student that they are in waiting list. The centre sends an email ten days earlier than the course commencement date to all the registered students to confirm their attendance. If the centre doesn’t receive a reply within two days or the registered student decline the offer, the vacant place is made available to the other waiting students if exist.
New students applying for ten days course are required to provide the information such as full names, date of birth, residential address, any medical issues, and list of prescribed medication being taken if any. Old students are required to also provide the information of up to last five courses they have attended.
Since MC is a non-profit organisation, they rely on donations and other assistance from volunteers (commonly referred to as Servers) for general operations and maintenance of the centre.
At the end of the course, students make voluntary financial contribution (i.e., donation). Students can make donations either in general fund or building fund. Public including students can also make donations throughout the year if they wish to. Meditation centre doesn’t accept donations via website therefore excluded such functionality from their website.
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When a course is running, the centre needs people to serve for the duration of the course in the kitchen providing catering services and as well as assistance to students in their mediation practice. These people are called Servers in general but categorised further as i) assistant teacher ii) kitchen help and iii) manager.
A course is offered using pre-recorded instructions and discourses. But two assistant teachers are required in the course for the supervision and provide other guidance to students. A male teacher is preferred for male students and a female teacher is preferred for female students. Two managers are also needed. One must be a male to serve male students and another must be female to serve female students. Centre needs around ten servers including male and females to operate kitchen while course is running. Centre offers only vegetarian dishes.
MC has 6 (primarily volunteer) committee positions that run the group and are paid a small stipend (currently $3,000 each per year) to cover out of pocket expenses. They have budgets allocated for services specific to their areas. They are supported by 8-10 dedicated volunteers who help their members by operating different times of the day/evening from the community building office in the local council offices (nominal rent of $20 per week).
The roles taken by the board members:
•Shirley Owens is the President (Budget – $10,000). She is the driving force behind the centreas well as this project and the budget holder. She has also put aside time in a busy diary to beavailable for this project.
•Nick Street is the Vice President – (Budget – $5,000). As a retired public servant, he is great atwriting and obtaining grants for MC but can be prone to doing a perfect job and seldomattends meetings.
•Tony Murray is the Secretary – (Budget – $5,000). He has been with MC for 5 years and priorto retirement was a senior team member from the business community on an Agile softwaredevelopment project. Also responsible for the non-board member volunteers and happy tomake at least one available for the project and empower them to make decisions. Keen to beinvolved and has made space in his diary. Well informed about what is going on in MC.
•Luke Brooke is the Treasurer – (Budget – $5,000). He generally represents the secretary atmeetings and is empowered to make decisions on his behalf. He has worked closely with dayvolunteers over the years and passed accountancy examinations (CPA) 2 years ago.
•Jen Davis is the External Affairs secretary – (Budget – $20,000). She networks with the localeducation institutions and is busy promoting/coordinating the educational events. She isresponsible for growing the profile for MC. She is not available for the project, but given heroutstanding network, she can easily source suitable volunteers with experience in socialsupport for the project and empower them to make decisions on her behalf.
•Steve Mays is the Centre Services Coordinator – (Budget – $20,000). He is responsible formaintaining centre and management of centre facilities and materials for running the courses.He is available for the project and is also a certified Workshop Facilitator and Agile ProjectManager.
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Your task is to develop a solution to implement MC’s requirements. Your company is Agile Innovation.
Agile Innovation – your company assisting centre to develop the project
Agile Innovation is an Agile software development consultancy located in the same local government area as Meditation Centre. They have purpose-built rooms for facilitated workshops and use the modern project management framework for all their software development projects.
Agile Innovation assigns a dedicated team for each of their projects. The team can be located on-site or off-site and has the following personnel:
•Julie – available for the project, she is a Microsoft ASP .Net (used for Web development)programmer and has some understanding of database systems.
•Jeff – available for the project, his area of expertise is developing database systems usingMicrosoft SQL Server.
•Sophie – available for the project, her area of expertise is developing information systemsusing C# and Oracle. She is also a certified Workshop Facilitator.
•Jonathan – available for the project, he has worked on several Agile development projects as aTeam Leader and has a very good understanding of the Microsoft .Net platform.
•Ken – available for 2 days a week throughout the project, he is a networking expect with agood unOrder Nowderstanding of Web development and testing.
Such a cheap price for your free time and healthy sleep
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