New Program at GSU Brings Jobs to Students, Graduates

Georgia Southern University's College of Information Technology provides high-tech training. It's also helping students and graduates find paying jobs right on campus.

"I'd been searching for a job for some time and decided it was best to speak with some of my professors here on campus, and they all recommended me to look into this project," said recent graduate Justin Lee.

The project involves developing software for local technology company CogentWare, and involves two grads and others who are still enrolled.

"They'll actually apply their education in an industrial environment," said project manager Richard Chambers. "We want them to understand that this is a real product that they're really working on and that real people will be using this and that people's businesses will depend on it working properly."

CogentWare's founder, Kerry Cotter, himself a GSU graduate, started his company in California. "About a year ago, my family and I just made a lifestyle choice to move to the Savannah area, Richmond Hill," he told us. "My thought was I was just going to commute back to California, and run the company out of Richmond Hill. But as I quickly learned about the growing technology enthusiasm going on in the Savannah are and also here in Statesboro, I became intrigued of how I might be able to leverage some of that movement going on."

CogentWare did research its offshoring options, but after looking at the numbers, the company says it was pleased to make use of talent available right here on the Georgia Southern campus.

"I was close to signing a contract to move some work over, offshore, to India and other countries," Cotter said. "After studying that closely, at least for small and medium-sized companies like myself, maybe need five or ten developers, there really was very little cost savings if at all."

Which is great news for these small-city programmers with big-city skills.

Reported by: Charles Gray,