Partnerships put student success in CITE

Published 8:03 am Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Staying relevant in today’s fast-paced digital world is a challenge. Students in the Center for Information Technology Excellence (CITE) lab at the Southside Virginia Community College (SVCC) Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center (LCAKC) are making progress with both the software and hardware side of computers.

With this state of the art lab, the “advanced” in the name of the center itself rings true.

Located in South Hill at the LCAKC, the establishment of the lab is due to a partnership of the Virginia Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission, the town of South Hill, Microsoft and SVCC.

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The CITE program is entitled “Networking and Computer Support” and with the completion of 18 credit hours, students earn a Career Studies Certificate. It is the industry certification of A+ that a small study group has focused on as an immediate goal.

Instructor Kyle Johnson explained that there are several CompTIA certification exams that can provide a definite edge for employment. About obtaining this certification, he said, “Even someone who has worked in the industry for 10 years would have to study and prepare if he or she wanted to be successful.”

Students Brenda Cross, Shanell Toone, Christian Jackson, and Kelly Arnold, who is the Apprenticeship Coordinator for the College, are committed to the goal of successfully passing the A+ certification examination.

The present topic in the Tuesday night class is learning the formula for IP addresses. Instructor Johnson explained that every device connected to a network has its own IP address; its identifier. There is a new version of the IP formula, which will accommodate the trillions of IP numbers needed in the future. Johnson explained that the CITE lab simulates a data server environment with laptops donated by Microsoft.

The students agree that the hands-on approach solidifies the understanding of the basic theory. Cross also feels that it is helpful in remembering the material to perform the activities as if it were “the real thing.” Dr. Chad Patton, Dean