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$300,000 grant supports workforce development in ULM computer programs

Published May 5, 2021

With a $300,000 grant from the Louisiana Department of Economic Development, the University of Louisiana Monroe is enhancing the Computer Science and Computer Information Systems programs to produce more graduates ready to enter the technology workforce. 



PHOTO: Dr. Jose Cordova, Associate Professor and Coordinator of the ULM Computer Science program, works with a student in the Computer Science lab. Siddharth Gaulee/ULM Photo Services







The IBM Delivery Center grant is led by principal investigator Jose Cordova, Ph.D., Associate Professor and Coordinator of the Computer Science program in the College of Business and Social Sciences. 


The first IBM Delivery Center grant began in 2015 and was led by former CBSS Dean and current President Ron Berry. Grants of varying amounts have continued annually.


Three entities benefit from the grant: the Louisiana Department of Economic Development, ULM and its students, and IBM. It's a win-win-win. 


ULM students learn from top faculty on the latest computer equipment, and programs, IBM and other tech employers have a trained workforce, and ULM graduates land well-paying, in-demand positions. It all contributes to the economic growth of the region.


The funds improve ULM's Computer Science and Computer Information Systems programs in many ways, from faculty salaries and technology equipment to internship opportunities, including working with the Louisiana Small Business Development Center on campus. 


As interns at the LSBDC, students work with small businesses to design websites and provide recommendations on technology solutions. 


Elizabeth Peters is a ULM Computer Science alumna who had an LSDBC internship funded by the grant. Peters is currently a professional software engineer at Corelogic in Irving, Texas, and credits her career success to ULM's program and her internship. 


"Interning at the LSBDC was an amazing experience. Working closely with local business owners to create websites and logos to promote their small businesses helped sharpen my communication skills. At my current job, I'm working in a pair every day, and communication is vital to being able to complete our tasks," stated Peters.


The IBM Delivery Center grant supports both the Computer Science and Computer Information systems programs, which in turn support each other.


"Computer science develops the software that makes use of the hardware to create applications that businesses can use. Computer Information Systems utilizes the applications created by developers to make businesses more efficient," stated Cordova. 


Students earn a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and earn Bachelor of Business Administration in Computer Information Systems. 


For more information on each program, please visit https://www.ulm.edu/cbss/