Alumni Spotlights

Christopher Jennings '07

I am an Associate Software Developer for Liberty Mutual Insurance Company in Dover, NH. I am a member of the Personal Market Architecture Team, and have been with the team since I joined Liberty. When I first joined, I worked on our Workflow application. It is a C++ application and uses DB2. We transitioned that application to a new team, and I moved on to some proof of concept work. I researched some different technologies and products that Personal Market was interested in deploying. Most recently I have been doing some Enterprise Architecture work for Personal Markets, focusing on TOGAF methodology and creating a Technical Reference Model and Architecture Continuum for Personal Market. Soon I will be transitioning to the Internet team where I will be doing web development for and java programming for one of the applications that our business users rely on for quoting and binding. I am currently pursuing a Master's Degree in Computer Science through Boston University. Right now I am taking an Operating Systems course, for which I am creating a Beowulf cluster (~15 nodes total).

My Saint Michael's education certainly prepared me to enter the real world. Not only did it teach me great problem solving skills, but it provided me with hands-on experience that was applicable in real world situations. Saint Michael's provided an excellent learning environment, as well as a diverse social environment. I am thankful to have met so many wonderful professors, friends, and students from around the world at Saint Michael's.

Eileen O'Sullivan '06

I am a Technical Analyst at ESRI (Environmental Systems Research Institute) in Vienna, Virginia. The company is headquartered in Redlands, CA and I am in the Washington, D.C. Regional Office. ESRI is the forerunner in GIS (Geographical Information Systems). Being new to the field and not being comfortable with their impressive software suite, I have been devoting a significant amount of time so far to taking training courses both in a classroom environment as well as on my own through their virtual campus program. I am becoming much more comfortable with geoprocessing and the GIS industry in general. In addition to training, I have been working on maintaining and updating documentation to guide me in learning the project focused on by my team. ESRI is government contracted so I am in the process of applying for a security clearance as well.

My education at Saint Michael’s College has greatly contributed to my success in industry in several ways. Firstly, the knowledge gained in the computer science courses prepared me for a career in the software industry. During my interview I was asked programming questions and software design questions in addition to typical interview questions. The Software Engineering course has proven to be a key to my success because ESRI develops their projects using the spiral model, which I learned about in that course. Also, the Saint Michael’s College Student Resource Center provided countless services to assist me in preparing my resume and cover letter as well as offering advice and practice for interviews. Additionally, being a student at Saint Michael’s College prepared me for life by allowing me to build relationships with the faculty, staff, and fellow students I was surrounded by. This experience has taught me how to be a better person and how to have relationships with those around me. Lastly, the guidance, advice, and friendships formed at St. Michael’s don’t end at graduation. My wonderful and ever-helpful Computer Science professors were there the summer after I graduated to guide me through interviews as well as salary and benefit negotiations. The best part is that it doesn’t stop there. They continue to be a guide for me and make themselves available as much as possible because I believe they really are committed to giving their students the tools they need to succeed in life.

Keith Rousseau '05

I am currently a Software Engineer at Raytheon in Tewksbury, MA. I am working on a small team that develops a tool repository web application. This involves working with customers to gather requirements, in addition to designing, coding and testing the application. The application uses a combination of Perl, XSLT, CSS, XML and SQL, which I have been able to learn quickly thanks to my CS classes. I am also taking night classes in pursuit of a Masters in Information Technology Management degree from Brandeis.

Although I do not work with any of the programming languages that I learned at Saint Michael’s, I learned a new way of thinking that allowed me to pick up new technologies quickly. My time in the Saint Michael's Computer Science department taught me to think analytically and helps me to solve a number of complex problems. These general skills, combined with specific skills that I learned in classes such as Software Engineering and Operating Systems have contributed greatly to my success at Raytheon. In addition, the skills that I learned in liberal arts courses at Saint Michael’s have been extremely useful, as there is always a need to write clear and concise documents in all aspects of Software Engineering.

Erin Guzowski '03

I am currently a software engineer at IBM in Essex Junction, VT, working on software for the timing of computer chip designs. I have learned a lot about electrical engineering while working at IBM, since I am writing applications to automate engineering processes. My daily work ranges from program design and architecture to programming, documentation, and customer support - basically the whole software life cycle! Most of the programming I do is in Java, C, and Tcl, and I do all of my development on a Linux workstation. My favorite part of this field is the creative and collaborative problem solving aspect, so I make an effort to be a part of the design phase of a project whenever possible, rather than just coding the solution.

In my day-to-day work, I have been able to apply many of the programming skills that I learned at Saint Michael's, including Java, C, C++, and the use of Linux operating systems. Additionally, the skills I gained in the Programming Languages course prepared me to learn new languages and understand code written in a language I may not know (especially the weird IBM-internal languages!). Of equal importance, I've been able to use my software engineering skills and people skills in solving problems as part of a team, leading projects and supporting customers. The variety of responsibilities, as well as the challenge of the problems, keeps me motivated and energized about my job. I am truly grateful to the Computer Science department at Saint Michael's for providing me with the foundation for such a wonderful career.

Jaimelee O'Hara (Eldred) '03

I am currently a Network Analyst for the Burlington IBM networking department. My newest and now primary role is as a Team Lead of a virtual networking team that writes and implements configurations for networking devices across the country for the hundreds of IBM sites. As a team lead I am responsible for ensuring my team writes and implements configurations for our given sites before the change windows that they are to be implemented in. I am also responsible for writing and implementing configurations for my own site and also sites that my team has been assigned.

My Computer Science degree helped me greatly when I obtained this position. Although I only took one class on networking at Saint Michael's, my other classes served as a great background for the many responsibilities that I have. Saint Michael's not only provided me the needed technical skills for my job, but also provided me with a diverse background in many other skills that are important to a well rounded career. I am currently working on obtaining a Masters in Management in Information Technology at Champlain College. This program will help me further my career within IBM and anywhere else I choose to go.

Will Taylor '01

I currently work full-time as a Software Engineer at IBM in Essex Junction, VT, while studying part-time for a Masters in Computer Science through Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's distance education program. At IBM, I am involved in the full software life cycle from concept and planning through development, testing, delivery, and support. I work on a small team developing and supporting applications that support IBM's semiconductor manufacturing facilities here in Essex Junction and around the world. The bulk of my work is with web applications written in Java, but I am also responsible for integrating legacy back-end applications into our systems. I am constantly learning and working with new and exciting technologies such as Web Services, Ajax, Eclipse, and IBM WebSphere.

My experience at Saint Michael's prepared me to excel at both IBM and RPI. I was able to quickly become a productive member of my team at IBM and take over the role of team leader within my first three years. I use my Java programming skills every day, and the foundation that I built at Saint Michael's has allowed me to develop advanced Java, C, C++ skills with ease. All of the knowledge that was hidden away in the back of my mind came flooding back when I was challenged by RPI's difficult classes. In addition, the writing, critical thinking, presentation, and networking skills I learned both in and out of the classroom have proved to be invaluable in my personal, professional, and academic life.

Learn What Matters