Monday, September 13, 2010

SBU CIS students gain valuable experience at internships

Southwest Baptist University News Release
Contact: Sharina Smith, Office of Marketing & Communications
417-328-1803 /

BOLIVAR, Mo. – Seventeen Southwest Baptist University students majoring in computer science or computer information science gained valuable experience this summer through internships in some area of computer science or software engineering.

 “We consider an internship to be a critical component in our students’ educational preparation,” said Dr. Tim DeClue, chair of the SBU Department of Computer and Information Sciences.  “There is nothing that can replace the experience a student gains by working with practicing software engineers and scientists.  The fact that our students earn a pretty decent wage for their internship experience makes it even better.”

Seven CIS Department students interned for the summer at Duck Creek Technologies, a company located in Bolivar which develops high quality software for the insurance industry.  Most of the students will continue to work with Duck Creek Technologies through the school year. 

“We have a special relationship with Duck Creek,” noted Dr. DeClue.  “The CEO is an alumnus of SBU, Duck Creek continues to be our largest employer, and of course they are located within a mile or two of campus.”

Two interns worked for the Bolivar Public School System, and several interns worked for companies located in Springfield including ANPAC, Associated Electric Cooperative, and Jack Henry and Associates.  Two interns worked for Gateway EDI in St. Louis.

Senior Ryan McGlaughlin spent the summer at the Argonne National Laboratory in Chicago with about 100 interns from around the world working on a “climate simulation called the Community Climate System Model,” where he, “worked on load balancing…for different processor counts on a 2,500 processor cluster.”  According to Ryan, there were no set hours, no dress code, and a very informal work environment.  Ryan said it was “…cool to meet and work with internationally known researchers.”

Junior Rebecca LaChance spent the summer working for Associated Electric Cooperative in Springfield, a company that manages the flow of electricity on the power grid in Southern Missouri. 

“The greatest thing about my internship was the challenge,” said LaChance. “I did not know how to do all the tasks that they required of me, which was a blessing in disguise. I acquired so many great skills during my internship. 

“The system I worked on was called the Energy Management System, and I helped modify the software that models the usage of energy in this part of the country.”

SBU’s Department of Computer and Information Sciences has five faculty members and close to 70 students majoring in the computer or information sciences.  Among evangelical Christian institutions, SBU is one of the leading producers of software engineers in the United States.


PHOTO: SBU Junior Rebecca LaChance

Southwest Baptist University is a leader among private universities in truly integrating Christ-centered academic pursuits with comprehensive professional programs at an affordable price. Since 1878, the faculty and staff have created a caring, academic community to prepare students to be servant leaders in a global society. The University has been named one of America’s Best Christian Colleges® for 13 consecutive years, one of America’s 100 Best College Buys® for 14 consecutive years, and it has been named among institutions with America’s Best College Scholarships ® for the past four years by Institutional Research and Evaluation, Inc. For more information, visit

SBU’s Office of Marketing & Communications is available to news media 24/7 at 417-399-7918.