Cisco Academy Road show comes to DIT -DIT Engineering Students on their way to San José

Dublin, 22 May 2006: The Cisco Academy Road show today arrived in Dublin Institute of Technology. The event, hosted by DIT's School of Electronic and Communications Engineering, was open to regional and local Cisco Networking Academies and all academic staff with an interest in ICT.

The main focus of the day was to provide instructors with technical information specifically on advanced networking technologies and allow hands-on use of new emerging technologies in areas such as network security. It also afforded those in attendance with an opportunity to explore new teaching methods and interact with other instructors and Cisco Experts.

Speaking at the event Dr. Mike Murphy, Director of DIT's Faculty of Engineering said:

"As one of the largest providers of engineering education in Ireland, we are especially proud of our close relationship with industry, which has been of great mutual benefit to industry and the Faculty over many years. The Cisco Networking Academy is an excellent example of this relationship with industry. The Academy Programme supports the School in its ambition to deliver innovative curriculum content that is relevant to the needs of industry.  Furthermore the integration of the Academy Programme into the School's programmes offers new challenges to both academic and technical staff and strengthens syllabus content offered to students."

In addition this year DIT's involvement with Cisco has resulted in two DIT students been chosen to undertake a four month placement with Cisco Systems in San Jose, California under the inaugural "Cisco Irish Intern Initiative". The news of the collaboration comes as part of a wider initiative which will see a total of sixteen students from Ireland selected to be interns at Cisco Systems in San José this summer.

According to Cisco's Ronan Farren, originally from Donegal, but based in San Jose, CA, and one of the main instigators of the Cisco Irish Intern Initiative: "The successful candidates will be based in the headquarters of Cisco Systems in San José, California in the high tech heaven of Silicon Valley, where they can apply their skills in a real and exciting business environment.  Through this initiative students are offered a terrific learning and cultural experience, where they will acquire skills and knowledge and gain hands-on training with leading edge technology."

In addition to the work placement, the students have received assistance with J-1 visas, flight and set-up costs and will be paid a competitive salary by Cisco Systems for the period of their internship.

"This is a truly amazing opportunity for our students to interact with and learn from the world leader in current and next generation networking and DIT is actively engaging with Cisco Systems in building upon this initiative" says Dr Gerald Farrell, Head of the School of Electronic & Communications Engineering.

The two DIT students bound for Cisco Systems Headquarters in California next week are Brian Keegan, currently undertaking his Ph.D. at the Institute and Dylan Cross, a third year student on the honours degree in Computer Engineering in DIT.

Brain is the only PhD student in Ireland to have been selected for the internship.  He is currently undertaking his PhD with DIT's Communications Network Research Institute (CNRI) where he works alongside a team of researchers investigating the area of wireless networks and specifically the IEEE 802.11 family of wireless LAN standards.

Speaking on his placement with Cisco, Brian said "As a Ph.D student the timing couldn't be better as I am currently in an early stage of my research with the CNRI.  During my time with Cisco I will be working for the Cisco WNBU (Wireless Networking Business Unit), which is one of the new growth areas within Cisco.  There I will be exposed to real live applications stress testing in customer demo labs as well as testing new feature functionality in lab conditions which may not necessarily be available to me in a research institute."

Dylan Cross from Rathangan, Co. Kildare is the other successful DIT candidate.  Dylan has been chosen to work within the exciting new field of VoIP, telephony which uses the Internet for making and receiving telephone calls.

Editors Notes:

  • Cisco Systems, Inc., the worldwide leader in networking, develops hardware, software, and service offerings to create networks that give individuals, companies, and countries easy access to information anywhere, at any time.
  • The Cisco Networking Academy is a comprehensive e-learning programme that provides students with the Internet technology skills essential in a global economy. The Networking Academy delivers web-based content, online assessment, student performance tracking, hands-on labs, instructor training and support, and preparation for industry standard certifications.
  • Since its inception in 1997, over 1.6 Million students have enrolled at the more than 10,000 Networking Academies located in high schools, technical schools, colleges, universities, and community-based organisations across 150 countries around the world.
  • As the largest faculty of its kind in Ireland, DIT Engineering provides industry relevant programmes to approximately 5000 students at apprentice, undergraduate, and postgraduate level.  The Faculty's five schools offer the widest range of engineering programmes in everything from electrical, communications, and computer engineering to transport, civil and building services.

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