Tag Archives: Computer Technology

Academic Excellence Award: Luke Smith

Luke Smith
Web Programming & Database Development
Mound, Minnesota


Leaving a job he’d held for 15 years and going back to college was a big decision for Luke Smith, but earning a degree in Web Programming & Database Development and securing a new position as a Digital Content Developer has made everything worth it.

Originally from Northern Minnesota, Smith attended Eveleth Gilbert High School and enrolled at a local community college for computer science right after graduation. For two years, Smith diligently went to his college classes, earned good grades, and believed he was working toward a degree. But what he found out after completing his requirements was that the program wasn’t approved yet, which meant he wouldn’t be receiving a degree after all.

Not wanting to give up on his dream of earning a college degree, Smith explored a neighboring university where he was told his general credits would transfer – but they didn’t. To avoid starting over, Smith decided to enter the working world instead.

He took a job as the manager of a direct mail company in the Twin Cities, and spent the next 15 years making a living, but also realizing he wasn’t on the right career path. 

“My son has been my inspiration,” Smith said about his motivation to return to college. “Had he not been around, I don’t think I would have paid attention to how much I needed to make a career change. Going to school and getting a good education makes a big difference.”

Smith had two friends who were instructors at Dunwoody, and they encouraged him to attend an open house and check it out.

After his visit, Smith knew he wanted to go back to what he enjoyed – computer programming. In addition, his desire to return to the workforce as soon as possible convinced Smith that attending Dunwoody was the right decision. So in January of 2016, he left his job and started school fulltime.

“Being older, I wanted to get back into the workforce as soon as possible,” Smith said. “I didn’t want to waste time taking a lot of unnecessary classes. I wanted a more focused approach.”

Smith has always been a hands-on learner and wanted an education that reflected that style. The Dunwoody model ended up being a great fit.

“The instructors are fantastic,” Smith said. “They are always willing to give you any help you need and they present the material to you in a way they know you are going to understand. They really make sure that you are learning the things they are teaching.”

Smith shared that when he made the decision to return to college, he set a number of goals for himself.

“I told myself, if I’m going to do this, I’m going to commit everything possible,” Smith said. “I’m going to treat it just like a job and give it everything I have.”

The strategy worked, and Smith has earned not only a 4.0 GPA and a 100 percent attendance record, but also the Academic Excellence Award in Computer Technology.

“Luke was an exemplary student who demonstrated professionalism and leadership amongst his peers,” said Web Programming & Database Development Instructor Chris Fulton. “Luke would go out of his way to help fellow students with questions and provide insight that he felt would benefit the entire class.”

A peer tutor during his time at Dunwoody, Smith enjoyed the time he spent helping other students.

“I try not to be a student who just shows up and goes home, but to use my experience to help others,” Smith said about being a peer tutor. “You’d be surprised by how much you learn by helping other people.”

Smith said his success at Dunwoody can also be attributed to the fact that he is doing something he loves.

“Decide what your passion is – what you like doing,” Smith said. “School is going to be the easiest if you pick something you enjoy doing from the beginning.”

Dunwoody College of Technology launches Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

OCTOBER 5, MINNEAPOLIS, MN – Dunwoody College of Technology is now accepting applications for its new Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering, which will begin classes August 2017. The degree will prepare students to enter the field of engineering as software engineers. Software engineers design, develop, test and improve software applications for a variety of fields, including medical, financial, manufacturing, consumer, military, enterprise and other uses.

The degree will incorporate the College’s life-long values of hands-on learning, problem-solving, teamwork and professionalism. Prospective students and others interested in learning about Software Engineering or Mechanical Engineering or both are invited to RSVP for an Oct. 25 School of Engineering Information Session to be held on the Dunwoody campus.

Other Points of Note: 

  • Software Engineering students will benefit from the lab spaces and equipment already present on campus, including networking and web development deployment environments used by Computer Technology students and automated systems and electronic controls labs used by Robotics & Manufacturing and Mechanical Engineering students.
  • The decision to launch a bachelor’s degree in software engineering was made in consultation with numerous industry leaders and professionals who highlighted a need for software engineers who combine both theoretical and practical skill sets and experience.
  • Software Engineering is the second degree offering the College’s School of Engineering, which launched with its first class of Mechanical Engineering students in August 2016.
  • Dunwoody is exploring which other engineering disciplines will join software and mechanical as the core majors for the School of Engineering. Currently electrical and civil engineering are at the top of the list.
  • Dunwoody has been approved to offer the degree by the Minnesota Office of Higher Education as well as the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association. The commission’s web address and phone number are: www.ncahigherlearningcommission.org and 312-263-0456.

Comment:

“As we explored the various options, Software Engineering made the most sense as the second major to add to our School of Engineering,” President Rich Wagner said. “The industry partners we spoke with saw a need for professionals who can design and lead complex software projects. We already supply many of the web developers and computer networking professionals hired by local industry. By adding software engineering we build on those current strengths to help address the need for IT professionals who can bring engineering thinking and skills to the field.”

More Information:

For more on Software Engineering and the School of Engineering: http://dunwoody.edu/engineering/

Media Contact:

William Morris, Director of Marketing & College Relations
wmorris@dunwoody.edu; 612-381-3367

For Admissions information:

dunwoody.edu/admissionsinfo@dunwoody.edu; 612-374-5800

Founded in 1914, Dunwoody College of Technology is the only private, not-for-profit technical college in the Upper Midwest. It has provided a hands-on, applied education to more than 200,000 men and women, who in turn have gone on to meaningful and rewarding careers and become outstanding technicians, successful entrepreneurs and industry leaders. Located on the western edge of downtown Minneapolis, Dunwoody offers more than 30 certificate, associate’s degree and bachelor’s degree programs in the areas of Applied Management, Automotive, Computer Technology, Construction Sciences & Building Technology, Design & Graphics Technology, Engineering, Radiologic Technology, Robotics & Manufacturing, and Workforce Training & Continuing Education.

Computer Technology adds evening program in Web Development

Starting fall 2014 Web Development will be offered as an evening program at Dunwoody College.

The Web Development program provides graduates with the necessary skills and knowledge to design, create and maintain websites that are well-coded, efficient, aesthetically pleasing, useful, data-driven and user-friendly.

According to Principal Instructor Kevin Wendt, many potential students first question is “can I do this at night?” The evening option gives working students more flexibility to start and stay in the program.

Principal Instructor Kevin Wendt answers student Molly Johnson’s Web Development questions during a daytime class.

“This program allows prospective students to get the key skills they need to get a job in the web development industry, while still holding a day job,” he said. “Financial implications are a major stress for today’s students, and being able to hold a job, possibly even a full-time job, while going to school can be a big relief.”

The offering joins the College’s day program in Web Programming & Database development.  The main difference between the two programs is that the evening program has a lower amount of database coursework.

Both programs are continuously changing to align with industry needs.

“New technologies, new approaches, and best practices in our area are always changing, so our curriculum is updating constantly to keep up,” Wendt said.  “When you get done, you shouldn’t be two years behind the curve, you should be as close to the cutting edge as we can get.”

For more information about Dunwoody’s Web Development program, visit http://dunwoody.edu/computer/web-development/ or email Wendt at kwendt@dunwoody.edu.

 

DUNWOODY COLLEGE APPROVED TO OFFER BACHELOR’S COMPLETION PROGRAM IN COMPUTER SYSTEMS ANALYSIS

Minneapolis, Minn., June 6, 2013 — Dunwoody College of Technology has received official approval from the Higher Learning Commission to offer a bachelor’s completion program in Computer Systems Analysis. The degree will focus on the ability to analyze procedures, methods, and uses of computer systems.  It is specifically designed for working professionals who have completed a two-year degree in Information Technology, including fields such as computer networking or programming. The program will launch in August 2013, and courses will take place in the evening.

 

“We wanted to do a four-year IT degree the Dunwoody way,” said Rob Bentz, program manager for Computer Technology. “Which means we focus on applied learning and the skills graduates of our two-year programs—or of similar programs— need to move into more senior positions in the industry.”

 

Coursework includes such topics as IT security, management information systems and computer architecture. Students also have a choice of electives in networking, software or data architecture.

 

Computer Systems Analysis is the fourth Dunwoody bachelor’s completion program to be approved, joining Applied Management, Construction Management and Industrial Engineering Technology. The College also offers a four-year degree in Interior Design.

 

Dunwoody College is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association: http://www.ncahlc.org/

 

Founded in 1914, Dunwoody College of Technology is the only private, not-for-profit technical college in the Upper Midwest. Located on the western edge of downtown Minneapolis, it has provided a hands-on, applied technical education to more than 250,000 men and women, who in turn have gone on to meaningful and rewarding careers.