Christopher Newport University to join new technology program

CNU has been accepted to be part of the Technology Talent Investment Program

Christopher Newport University is on the rise again. The school is becoming much more well-known, and an education from CNU is becoming extremely valuable. The university was recently accepted to join a new program called the Tech Talent Investment Program.

Dean of the College of Natural and Behavioral Sciences, Nicole Guajardo, said, “The program is designed to increase the number of graduates in technology, focused in computer science and computer engineering, by 31,000 over the next 20 years to expand workforce development in these areas, in particular to support the Amazon headquarters that will be developed in Arlington, Va.”

This program is a major accomplishment for CNU, and being accepted into it will provide future Captains with even more opportunities specifically in technology-related fields.

“Last spring, the state called for applications from Virginia universities who were interested in being a part of the Tech Talent Investment Program (TTIP). Specifically, proposals were to focus on increasing graduates in the areas of computer science and computer engineering,” Guajardo said. “Christopher Newport University developed a proposal that included projections of growth in the number of graduates in these areas across the next 20 years and plans for how support could be utilized.”

It was a long process to work on the proposal, complete the application and then finally find out the results. 

“Proposals were submitted this summer and then they were reviewed by a state-level committee, including the secretary of education, director of the Virginia Department of Planning and Budget, director of SCHEV, staff directors of the House Appropriations Committee and the Senate Finance Committee, CEO of VEDP and the secretary of finance,” Guajardo said. “Awardees were notified in early October and award amounts were finalized and announced in November.” 

Christopher Newport is the only non-doctoral degree granting institution that received support in the first round of awards. The school will receive funding from the state specifically to support equipment, capital and program development. 

“In return, we have committed to increasing gradually the number of graduates in computer science and computer engineering each year over the next 20 years, which will ultimately lead to a total addition of 393 graduates,” Guajardo said. 

The Technology Talent Investment Program is a highly recognizable program and it will contribute to the growing importance that technology has, especially in northern Virginia. The ability for CNU to participate is tremendous and will allow CNU to become more competitive as a university. 

“It is significant to be recognized as a university that provides exceptional training in the fields of computer science and computer engineering,” said Guajardo. It is noteworthy that a university of smaller size received funding in the first round of awards, along with 10 other larger peer institutions including William & Mary, Virginia Tech, and UVA. We have been recognized for the excellent education we provide.

“It also will provide funds that will enable us to strengthen our current programs in computer science and computer engineering. Funding will provide additional faculty lines, equipment for labs and research, and scholarships in these areas. This is a very exciting opportunity for our students and our faculty,” she said. 

This opportunity does not come along often, and the Technology Talent Investment Program is a long-term program, so it is significant that CNU will be involved in it for the 20-year period that they specified. It will allow CNU to grow and give future Captains more opportunities to further their success. 

Not only will it increase the level of education they receive, but it will also allow more students to find jobs after graduating in an extremely innovative field.

Christopher Newport University has already established itself among other universities, but this allows it to grow and flourish even more into an extremely prestigious school.

~Taryn Hannam-Zatz, Staff Writer~ 

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