WSC Information Technology Department receives Innovation Grant
Posted: Feb 08 2023
WILLISTON, N.D. – February is National Career & Technical Education (CTE) month. On February 1, 2023, Governor Burgum also proclaimed February as National Career & Technical Education Month in the State of North Dakota, which brings awareness and celebrates the accomplishments of CTE programs across North Dakota and the nation.
Recently, Williston State College’s Information Technology (IT) Department received a thirty-eight-thousand-dollar ($38,000) North Dakota Career & Technical Education Innovation Grant that will help to improve automation and information technology programs.
The grant needed matching dollars to be received successfully. About five years ago, ten thousand dollars ($10,000) was set aside, through a generous donation, and held by the Williston State College Foundation for the purpose of being used for future IT program enhancement. The matching dollar donation is also being used in tandem of other generous donations that have been given to the IT program from local and regional entities to enhance technology programs for students.
“When I was first given the opportunity to apply for this Innovation Grant, I thought what we could do to help students,” said Professor of Information Technology, Ken Quamme. Quamme further discussed that a grant was given to the Petroleum program about 6 years ago that enhanced automation in that field, and he wanted to do something similar.
The Innovation Grant has requirements that will show how dollars are spent. A big portion of this grant is going to be used in such areas of the IT field in the use of drones, robotics, and automation within the Petroleum Program.
This grant also has a forward focus to helping the three new programs starting in the Fall of 2023, Internet of Things (IoT), Cybersecurity, and Electronics & Industrial Controls. “We will be the only college in the North Dakota University System that will be offering Internet of Things Program,” said Quamme. The IoT program will educate students in the concepts of computers, networking, robotics, and automation.
“The jobs students are getting, after completing these programs, are in IT and automation. Automation students are getting IT jobs, IT students are getting automation jobs, so we were ahead of the game in getting these new IoT and automation classes set up for Fall 2023,” said Quamme.
Some of the jobs students are getting upon completion of these IT and automation courses is Computer Support Specialist, Network Support Specialist, and Coding & Programming Specialist.
If you have further questions about Information Technology, please contact Professor of Information Technology, Ken Quamme at 701.774.4207 or Ken.Quamme@willistonstate.edu
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