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The North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics Joins IBM's Academic Initiative to Help Students Prepare for Tomorrow's Workplace


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DURHAM, NC - 22 Apr 2005: IBM today announced that the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics (NCSSM) has joined IBM's Academic Initiative to help better prepare students for the information technology (IT) and computer science jobs of tomorrow.

NCSSM will collaborate with IBM on skills-building and curriculum development, in addition to its existing recruitment relationship. This initiative will expand upon ongoing partnerships that IBM has established with the leading North Carolina colleges and universities, including Duke University, North Carolina A&T, N.C. State and the University of North Carolina -- Chapel Hill. In these relationships, IBM provides free access to a multi-million dollar portfolio of software technologies and consultative services to help build next generation curricula.

The announcement was made by Rusine Mitchell-Sinclair, IBM's senior state executive for North Carolina, at the school's 20th Annual Research Symposium.

"IBM has long been a champion of technology innovation. Now they are helping us provide a superior education for students with an interest in science and math and a strong determination to prepare for professional careers and positions of leadership," said Dr. Gerald Boarman, NCSSM President. "By providing access to the latest software tools as well as training and support, IBM is enabling us to successfully incorporate new technologies and keep our curriculum up to date."

On the recruitment side, IBM has selected three NCSSM students for paid internships the last two years. There are also several NCSSM alumni working at IBM in technical positions such as software engineer, photolithograpy development engineer, and enterprise application architecture manager.

IBM's partnerships already are achieving results in North Carolina. In fact, IBM is currently the number one employer at Duke's Fuqua School of Business while NC State is IBM's number one school for recruitment, a testament to the caliber of education students are receiving in the state.

The North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics opened in 1980 as the first school of its kind in the nation -- a public, residential high school where students study a specialized curriculum built around science and mathematics. The combined vision of former Governor James B. Hunt Jr., former Governor and Duke University President Terry Sanford, and John Ehle, a well-known area academician and author, NCSSM's unique living and learning experience made it the model for 13 like schools across the globe.

"We want to get students excited about technology early, developing the technical foundation on which to build a career -- and a good understanding of math and science is a part of that," said Gina Poole, Vice President, Developer Relations and the IBM Academic Initiative. "As a leader in technical education with an enviable college placement record to the top state universities, NCSSM is a unique partner for IBM as we help prepare the technology leaders of tomorrow."

IBM Academic Initiative
The IBM Academic Initiative is an innovative program offering a wide range of technology education benefits to meet the goals of most colleges and universities. IBM will work with schools that support open standards and seek to use open source and IBM technologies for teaching purposes both directly and virtually via the Web.

As part of the Academic Initiative, IBM will work with select schools that support open standards to achieve three key objectives:

In an increasingly competitive global economy, the IT leaders of tomorrow will be pursuing innovations that will come from a fusion of several different disciplines. IBM, which champions open standards as the technology of choice for independent software vendors (ISVs), the leading influencers of today's marketplace, now seeks to advance open standards among the next generation of IT professionals. At the same time it is helping reverse a troubling trend, the lack of enough qualified science and technology students with skills to lead the future of the IT industry.

For more information on the IBM Academic Initiative, visit www.ibm.com/university.

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