Last week, the Williston State College Information Technology (I.T.) program was presented the Director’s Award of Excellence at the 49th Annual Department of Career and Technical Education (CTE) Professional Development Conference (PDC).

The award is an acknowledgment of superior CTE programs in North Dakota and was accepted by WSC President Dr. John Miller and Ken Quamme, Professor of Information Technology.

The WSC I.T. program was recognized for:

Obtaining a 100 percent placement rate for 2019 graduates and placing first of all the North Dakota higher education institutions in the SANs Cyber Fast Track Competition in the spring of 2019.

Renaming the Technology Club to attract students from many program areas with a focus on robotics, drones, and certifications, with plans underway for students to participate in SkillsUSA in 2019-2020.

Providing a strong internship program for all students.

“WSC’s I.T. Program is successful for a number of reasons,” explained Quamme. “First, it has many talented students who have an opportunity to pave a career path in a growing and changing field. They are the key element to a successful I.T. Program and receiving an award like this.”

“Another key ingredient is the WSC leadership team,” continued Quamme. “Without administration support and their understanding of the I.T. Program’s importance and the quality it brings to the region, it would not be possible to receive this award.”

In addition to strong students and institutional support, the I.T. Program has continued to adapt to needed changes in curriculum and instructional resources to best meet the needs of students and industry partners.

“The I.T. Program Advisory Committee consists of I.T. leaders from many areas in our region,” stated Quamme. “They provided needed input on the skills students need to be successful and provide our students with fantastic internships and follow up with wonderful job opportunities.”

When asked what it means for WSC to be recognized with the Director’s Award of Excellence, Dr. Miller explained that the award is especially meaningful given the importance of I.T. today.

“Ken’s students performed at a high level of aptitude on recent cybersecurity exercises and they are a credit to Ken, his program, and the college,” stated Dr. Miller. “WSC has great people and programs worthy of such recognition.”

Held at the Bismarck Event Center from August 5-7, the PDC is an annual conference attended by over 600 North Dakota CTE secondary and postsecondary instructors, counselors, and administrators. This year’s conference theme was “CTE: Learning that works for North Dakota.”

In addition to the award, WSC alongside United Tribes Technical College, was one of this year’s post-secondary Spotlight Institutions. Quamme, joined by Alexey Kovalev, Petroleum Technology Instructor, showcased their respective programs to their peers.

For more information on this story or the I.T. Program, please contact Ken Quamme at 701.774.4207 or ken.quamme@willistonstate.edu.

For more information, please visit www.willistonstate.edu, call 701.774.4200, or stop by 1410 University Avenue, Williston, ND.

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