March 27, 2008
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Steve Dannelly Connects Grads with Tech Jobs
Despite the growth of technology services abroad, plenty of computer jobs remain in the United States, according to Stephen Dannelly, chair of the Department of Computer Science. And Winthrop graduates have an easy time filling some of them.
Our placement is excellent, said Dannelly, who sees graduating seniors take jobs with financial institutions, the insurance industry and small businesses in the region or advance to graduate school. I tell parents that not all jobs are going to India and other places overseas.
In fact, the department ventured into new territory last fall when it began offering a new information design degree. Students can specialize in one of four areas, either with interactive media, web applications, digital commerce or digital mass media.
Dannelly, who came to Winthrop in 2004, worked with a team of professors from the business, mass communication, computer science, and graphic design departments to come up with the new integrated degree.
We found that the computer science and art professors were teaching some of the same subject but using a different language, Dannelly said. We also talked with folks in industry who knew graphic design, marketing and computer skills.
Dannelly said word is getting out about the degree. I receive phone calls on a weekly basis from all over South Carolina, he said. Its kind of an out-of-the-box program.
With only 25 freshmen taking classes now, the program will grow as new students and courses are offered each year. The web application and interactive media tracks have proven the most popular so far, Dannelly said.
Already Winthrop computer students can decide to get a bachelor of science degree in computer science or in business administration with an emphasis in computer information systems. Students then seek jobs involving software development, network system maintenance and data mining. Increasingly, workers are needed, Dannelly said, to help companies conduct business over the Internet so computers at different locations can talk to each other.
Dannelly urges students in the program to build their resumes in the summer by working internships. Already this summer, he has students working for the Department of Homeland Security in Livermore, Calif., the Federal Bureau of Investigation at Quantico, Va., at the National Science Foundation and with companies in Charlotte and elsewhere around the region.
We have a really great group of students who are doing a lot of interesting things, Dannelly said.
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