Educated for Success

Marist College students benefit from school's partnership with IBM

Marist College students benefit from school's partnership with IBM
Photography by Amy Etra

The Students

Marist College offers three majors within the area of technology: information technology, computer science and information systems. As far as the undergraduate courses, Dr. Roger Norton, Marist College dean of the school of computer science and mathematics, says about 50 to 60 freshmen begin course work in IT or computer science and the same number of students graduate each year. The Institute for Data Center Professionals (IDCP) at Marist College has around 100 people participating in the certificate programs annually.

Angelo Corridori, director of large systems education at Marist, develops the enterprise systems and System z application development and software architecture platform-related courses. These classes are available to students and also working professionals as certificate courses. Corridori says students in Marist’s 21 certificate courses range from new hires within an organization who may have just graduated from college without any background in enterprise systems, to more experienced people who may need a refresher course on the technology.

“The new hires are obviously just trying to get the basics under their belts—things like terminology and concepts of enterprise systems and basic skills,” says Corridori. Marist has a mainframe available on campus for students to log onto and get experience using real systems. They often have their own copy of z/OS running under z/VM*. “This is something that’s very difficult to do in a real-world production shop because a lot of those resources are closely monitored,” says Corridori.

Corridori says he’s always surprised at how many experienced students are taking the introductory classes. Some students have as many as 15 years of on-the-job training, but are looking to form a framework to continue their education on ever-changing technology. “By taking classes, they really get that framework and understanding of how the various pieces of the system fit together and they can see how their on-the-job training fits into that picture and they can branch off and learn about other areas of the system that they’re not as familiar with,” he says.

Caroline Vitse is a freelance writer based in Rochester, Minnesota.

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