Fairfield University School of Engineering offers certificate programs in Network Systems Technology, Application and Data Security and Web Applications Development

E. Hadjimichael, dean of the Fairfield University School of Engineering, announced the inauguration of three graduate-level Certificate programs for professionals in the area of software engineering. The three new programs are Network Systems Technology, Application and Data Security, and Web Applications Development, and are due to enroll students in spring 2004.

Each of the certificate programs requires four courses for completion. They are an effective and efficient way for experienced professionals to update their skills and maintain or increase their marketability, said William Guelakis, director of the Master's Program in Software Engineering in the School of Engineering at Fairfield University.

"We're targeting professionals that have degrees or experience in the field and are looking to upgrade their skills, since in this field, it's not what you know, it's what you can do," Guelakis said. Major shifts occur in technology fields every three to five years, and IT professionals often don't have the time, or opportunity, to keep up with the latest developments in their domain. The focused certificate programs can bring them up to speed, Guelakis said.

Potential students who do not have an engineering background can take introductory courses to prepare for the certificate programs. The School of Engineering can guide candidates to basic courses that will ready them to enter one of the certificate programs.

The certificates are also a good way for professionals who are considering a master's degree to get started, Guelakis added. All of the classes required for the certificate programs can be applied toward the School of Engineering's master's in Software Engineering.

The Network Systems Technology Certificate program prepares the student for experience in business and industry, and provides a solid academic foundation in technical aspects and models of networking. Students work in networking laboratories and classroom settings to get hands-on experience with network operating systems, routers and switches, and local and wide area network topologies, as well as to develop the skills to perform network capacity planning and performance monitoring. The course of study combines vendor independent concepts and analytical skills development, utilizing state of the art equipment from Cisco, Microsoft, and other industry vendors. The program provides students with all of the materials needed to prepare for the Cisco Certified Networking Associate (CCNA) credentials, and offers the opportunity for obtaining a voucher to cover the cost of the certification test.

The Application and Data Security Certificate program will cover current information on security issues, social engineering methods in the Information Security arena, the weaknesses in the human factor and in methods, and current trends. The program will also look at application and data security in current enterprises, with an emphasis on Systems Development Life Cycle (SDLC) components coupled with database security. Security for Internet transactions will be another important topic, including encryption schemes of transmission and execution of code and complete flight of an execution. Students will learn about Web-based technologies and common countermeasures and best business practices in Internet security. Finally, the program will address current information security practices and countermeasures to safeguard against security breaches, such as firewalls, IDS Systems, and Honey pots. Students will also learn about risk analysis, computer use policies, physical security, Internet/Intranet security, and firewall infrastructure.

The Web Application Development Certificate program focuses on a leading and proven approach to web application development using Microsoft's .NET platform and constituent technologies. This Certificate program covers basic technical concepts, standards, design issues, tasks, tools and methodologies for web application development, while building programming and development skills with VB.Net, C#, SQL Server, ASP.NET, ADO.NET and XML web services. The program will look at leading technologies for web/intranet application development and security procedures for e-commerce and other web database applications.

A Lab-based, project-centered approach provides a technical foundation and hands-on experience with vital technologies that are the driving force behind many successful websites. Students learn to integrate databases with the web, and develop sophisticated web applications and web services.

"Students in the Web Application Development Certificate program will get exposure to cutting edge technology, and acquire skills that employers are looking for," said Rama Ramachandran, a faculty member in the School of Engineering at Fairfield University who designed the Web certificate program. The certificate will help database developers and programmers who are trying to expand their skills in web development and in the latest Microsoft technology, and make themselves more marketable, Ramachandran added.

"Today, any high school student can become a web designer," Ramachandran said. "A web application developer, on the other hand, is one who understands databases and networking concepts, has exposure to programming languages, and can build high performance database driven web sites. The Fairfield University Web Application Development Certificate Program will make you a much sought-after Web Application Developer."

Classes begin on January 20. Registration is ongoing and ends when classes begin. For more information or to register, please contact the School of Engineering at (203) 254-4147 or, directly, Bill Guelakis at (203) 254-4000 x2764, or email: wguelakis@mail.fairfield.edu.

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Media Contact: Nancy Habetz, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2647, nhabetz@fairfield.edu

Posted on December 12, 2003

Vol. 36, No. 133

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