On Being Tech-Savvy
As a self-described “technology enthusiast,” Esper El-Melhem (BASc., 2015) was looking for a degree that would equip him with business soft skills and practical knowledge needed to compete in the IT job market. When he graduated with a BASc. from the Information Technology Infrastructure (ITI) program and a minor in computer science, too, El-Melhem was ready and rarin’ to dive into his competitive field.
“I’ve always been intrigued by technology,” El-Melhem says. “The ITI program filled the bill for me, and it’s constantly updated to meet what is driving the market.”
When he first entered the program, El-Melhem planned to focus on Big Data/security—however, he was pleased with the opportunity to add business courses to his studies. “A huge plus to ITI is the ABUS [Applied Business] courses that are included within the program. Those classes give students a feel for the business side of things, which is a key feature to the [real-world application] of the program.
Another crucial aspect of the program, he adds, are the instructors who are real-world industry leaders.
During his studies, El-Melhem interned at the Minneapolis-based civil engineering firm Alliant Engineering, where he served as a network administrator intern and “was able to leverage many of the concepts and theories [he] learned in the classroom.”
That’s a practice that continues to this day, as El-Melhem was offered a position as an IT consultant/auditor at Ernst & Young following graduation. “I apply what I learned in the program [almost daily]. For example, having background about the types of databases and how they run (backups, recoveries, access permissions, etc.) helps ease my work in understanding the platform I'm working with.”
So, would he recommend the program to other “tech enthusiasts”? El-Melhem’s answer is a resounding yes.