Shaping job-ready graduates through real-world learning

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The right opportunity will follow when students are empowered while they learn and grow. That philosophy defines an education at Northern Kentucky University (NKU), where STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) students are trained to become intellectually agile and technically skilled professionals.

Take, for example, Tobel Atnafu. The Ethiopian worked on multiple research projects with the faculty in addition to joining hackathons. He was also part of the team that won GlobalHack VII, 48 hours of hacking, innovating and networking that allowed him to discover new concepts and technologies that were valuable for his future. Upon graduation, he started working as a software engineer at Paycor, a company specialising in human resource management.

Adel Kassem, another Ethiopian NKU graduate, took full advantage of the opportunities at NKU. Through working as a junior java developer and software engineering intern, he built his professional network, gained hands-on experience, and learned from advice given by senior professionals in the field. Today, he works for Google in their software engineering residency programme. 

Like Atnafu and Kassem, you could live out your success story at NKU. Founded in 1968, this entrepreneurial state university is nestled in the quiet suburb of Highland Heights, Kentucky — just seven miles southeast of Cincinnati. 

Northern Kentucky University

Source: Northern Kentucky University

It pairs a serene suburban setting with an engaging intellectual environment of over 16,000 students served by more than 2,000 faculty members and staff. 

While NKU is rapidly growing as Kentucky’s premier education hub, it maintains a close-knit community where professors know their students by name. It’s what makes the full-college, hands-on experience here so effective in producing successful graduates.

“We have diverse faculty with varied backgrounds,” says Dr. Maureen Doyle, a professor at the School of Computing and Analytics. “We have faculty with extensive industry experience, including at Cisco, Intel and BBN. We also have faculty who have created their own start-ups and run businesses part-time. NKU can be your home for launching your career.”

Experiential learning, new opportunities

NKU’s School of Computing and Analytics is full of bright students who are set to use their time here to find professional success. As they earn a degree in one of the computing fields, they get a behind-the-scenes look at the digital world, moving from being a user of information technology to becoming a creator and a decision-maker. Those pursuing programmes in one of the applied information systems fields evolve into a future leader in this age of digital transformation, in which the worlds of business and healthcare rely on sophisticated technology for process management and data analytics. 

Here, you learn the fundamentals of informatics and programming through the undergraduate Computer Science programme. You can choose from a set of electives sampled from a variety of application areas (such as artificial intelligence, database systems, concepts of programming languages, and computer security). A team-project capstone course in software engineering culminates your major. The best part? To study here is to study at the university ranked first in Kentucky and 40th nationally for awarding the most Computer Science degrees to women. 

If you seek to capitalise on the acute demand for professionals who can defend organisations against cyberattacks and hackers, the Cybersecurity programme makes an ideal option. After gaining a strong core of computer information technology, computer science and business information systems augmented by cybersecurity courses, you will complete a co-curricular applied experience.

“NKU provides students with an outstanding technology education. Our programmes are reviewed and updated to stay current and relevant for our graduates,” Dr. Doyle says. 

At a school that focuses on opportunities, you’ll get to participate in research and learn from leading industry experts. NKU’s curriculum features internships and co-op opportunities to boost your career-readiness. Campus is home to many student organisations you can join, including Business Intelligence Group, Women in Informatics, NUKE Robotics, COI Diversity Scholars in Informatics, WiiCys (Women in Cybersecurity), NKCyber, NKU Esports, Norse IoT Club, and Data Science Club, among others. You will also learn to use the practical tools essential to your career  – allowing you to build a solid work portfolio before completing the major and have a headstart as you jump into the workforce. 

Dr. Nicholas Caporusso, Assistant Professor in the School of Computing and Analytics, have been working on several projects revolving around different aspects of Human-Computer Interaction. He collaborates with students, giving them invaluable exposure to projects that focus on improving eye-tracking technology and rendering common appliances accessible to individuals who are blind, among others.

“Getting involved in a research or creative project can really make a difference for students: it can help them discover and use their talents, find their passion, gain valuable experience, enhance their professional and communication skills, and be better prepared to pursue funding and employment opportunities,” he says. “As a faculty, the main benefit of working with students is gaining new perspectives and fresh energy for my research projects. Several times students’ involvement has resulted in a radical shift in methodology that has contributed to achieving a better outcome.”

Northern Kentucky University

Source: Northern Kentucky University, Facebook

Diverse programmes to cater for the 21st century

NKU offers a list of great technology-related Bachelor of Science programmes in Applied Software Engineering, Business Information Systems, Computer Information Technology, Data Science, Health Informatics and Library Informatics.

Ranked #16 in the US and #2 most affordable in the US, the Data Science programme will cover data analytics, mining and visualisation, and more. Meanwhile, the undergraduate and graduate programmes in Business Information Systems will allow you to build your fundamentals in information technology and learn essential analytical techniques for effective data management in organisations. 

The Health Informatics programme looks into the operational, legal, and financial aspects of the health care industry, and how data can be analysed, processed and presented to empower decision-making for improved individual and population health. The Library Informatics programme develops responsible information consumers, disseminators, and creators who can effectively navigate the ever growing and increasingly complex information landscape.

Exciting opportunities await at your dream school. Click here to learn more about School of Computing and Analytics.

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