IBM Helps Link College Students With High-Tech Jobs

SOMERS, NY -- (MARKET WIRE) -- Sep 23, 2005 -- IBM today announced a new initiative aimed at helping college and university students find employment in information technology jobs.

The new program, the "IBM Academic Initiative Student Opportunity System," enables students from accredited colleges and universities worldwide to post their resumes to a virtual career center that will be made available to thousands of IBM clients and business partners. As a result, IBM is making it easier for companies to locate and hire students skilled in open standards-based technologies.

With today's news, IBM is taking another major step to help bridge the gap between skilled IT professionals and the increased number of technology jobs. According to the United States Department of Labor, computer software engineers are projected to be one of the fastest growing occupations over the 2002-2012 timeframe. The department projects that jobs requiring science, engineering and technical training will increase 51 percent through 2008. That could lead to 6 million job openings for scientists, engineers and technicians.

However, even with this projected growth, finding skilled workers is increasingly challenging due to the lack of students entering the computer science field.

The Student Opportunity System is designed to create a collaborative network among IBM's broad ecosystem of business partners, customers and academics to help accelerate innovation around open standards-based offerings in the marketplace.

How It Works

The Student Opportunity System is now available to students at accredited colleges and universities worldwide who have passed at least one of the more than 200 IBM Professional Certifications. Once they have passed, students will receive a Certification Candidate ID that will allow them to register for the Student Opportunity System. After selecting a user name and password, students can login and upload their resume.

Students can upload one document, which can include a resume, cover letter or anything else they feel would help explain their qualifications to IBM business partners and clients.

IBM is also offering students resume building and interview tips. So not only is IBM providing a way for students to spread the word about their abilities to potential employers, but it is also helping them through the process, from resume development to sealing the deal during an interview.

For example, if a company is looking for a graduate located in Texas skilled in information management and security, the Student Opportunity System can help match them up with candidates certified in database and identity management software. Using the Web-based tool, employers will be able to browse resumes based on their search criteria and find interview candidates with a few simple clicks.

IBM's Student Opportunity System is now available to students worldwide at ibm.com/university/opportunity system. By the end of the year, thousands of Premier IBM Business Partners and hundreds of IBM clients will be able to search the resumes to find candidates to match their technology skills requirement.

"Tennessee State University is preparing its students for the jobs of the future by providing the latest IT training and certifications," said Dr. Jacqueline Mitchell, Special Assistant to the President of TSU. "With the precipitous skills gap in science and technology fields facing this country today, we are graduating students who are experienced and certified on open standards-based technologies by taking advantage of the benefits offered from IBM. We expect that the introduction of the Student Opportunity System will only serve to increase the percentage of job placements by linking our talented, skilled students with high-tech jobs in the IT industry."

"IBM is investing in courseware and skills to help professors build new, more relevant curriculum -- a big first step in building a talented, skilled workforce for the technology industry," said Buell Duncan, general manager of ISV and Developer Relations, IBM. "Leveraging our ecosystem of business partners, customers and universities, we are taking the next logical step by connecting this talent with the information technology jobs of tomorrow."

Embracing Talent to Drive Innovation

IBM also introduced a new online Student Software Catalog that allows students to easily download open standards-based software directly from IBM to supplement their computer science and software engineering classes. With this new online software catalog, professors can more easily distribute software to students for teaching purposes. Full-featured versions of IBM Rational Software Modeler, IBM Rational Application Developer, IBM WebSphere Application Server and IBM DB2 Universal Database are available to students whose professors participate in the IBM Academic Initiative.

IBM is also launching a talent search to honor exceptional Ph.D. students in disciplines of mutual interest, fundamental to innovation and on demand business. The IBM Ph.D. Fellowship Program for 2006 is open for nominations through October 31, 2005. Through this annual, worldwide competitive program, faculty members can nominate full-time Ph.D. students who have completed at least one year of study in their doctoral program.

Award recipients will be selected based on their overall potential for research excellence, the degree to which their technical interests align with those of IBM, and their academic progress to-date, as evidenced by publications and endorsements from their faculty advisor and department head. Winners are awarded tuition, fees, stipend of US$17,500 for one academic year and a ThinkPad. All IBM Ph.D. Fellowship award winners are matched with an IBM mentor according to their technical interests, and they are encouraged to intern at an IBM research or development laboratory under their mentor's guidance.

Today's news builds on IBM's momentum to work with the academic community to accelerate the adoption of open standards. Over the last year, IBM has collaborated with more than 3,500 universities to encourage students into the fields of science and mathematics and to help them develop skills for an on demand world. Through IBM's Academic Initiative, more than 1,700 universities and colleges serve up over 3,800 new courses teaching more than 280,000 students open standards-based IT skills relevant to the jobs of tomorrow.

About IBM

IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with more than 80 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate. For more information, see http://www.ibm.com.

IBM, DB2, Lotus, Rational, Tivoli and WebSphere are trademarks or registered trademarks of International Business Machines Corporation. For a list of additional IBM trademarks, please see www.ibm.com/legal/copytrade.shtml. All other company/product names and service marks may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies.

CONTACT:
Cas Purdy
IBM Media Relations
512-286-3208

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