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Computer science master’s program to be offered at UWRF

October 17, 2014

The College of Business and Economics (CBE) at UW-River Falls will be offering a new master’s program, a Master of Science in Computer Science (MSCS), starting in fall 2015.

Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Student President Theodore McDonough who plans to get his masters in computer science said it is convenient for students already in the undergraduate program at UWRF because they are already established in the area and can continue to use the resources available.

“What job can you have that does not use a computer?” McDonough said about the reason he plans to pursue computer science.

A master’s program in computer science has been in the works for a while at UWRF.

“I have wanted to start a master’s program in computer science since I started my career here at UWRF and I am so excited to see the culmination of our work in this program,” said CSIS department Chair Hossein Najafi in a press release statement.

One of the reasons that Leanne Van Allen, director of graduate programs in CBE, gave for establishing the MSCS is the strong undergraduate success of undergraduates in Computer Science and Information Systems Department at UWRF. One way that the program will benefit prospective graduate students is how flexible and dynamic the program will be.

“Computer Science is always changing and our program is going to reflect that by staying dynamic,” Van Allen said. “The program will evolve and be able to adapt to the needs of the business community.”

The current Master of Business Administration (MBA) program has around 100 students and plans to increase around another 20 students next year with the added program in computer science, according to Van Allen. On Thursday, Oct. 9, CBE held an open house where prospective or interested students were given the opportunity to speak to Van Allen, Najafi and CBE Dean Michael Fronmueller.

Van Allen said while the turnout was a bit low with 15 students that showed up for it, they were all engaged and interested in the program.

McDonough said he did not attend the open house since it was in Hudson rather than on campus. He said ACM is already in works to get an open house on the UWRF campus and have been outreaching to the community and high school area students to get them more information on why computer science is a good major to get into right now.

“This is a field where you can make the most money and have the most available jobs,” McDonough said.

ACM is open to students with an interest in computer technology, video games, programming competitions and robots. McDonough said there is about 20-30 active members in ACM and that out of all the organizations he has ever been in they are the most active.

“We are setting up monthly computer clean up where people can come in and get viruses off their computers,” Mc- Donough said.

For more information about the MSCS program, visit uwrf.edu/CBE/MSCS. All Questions can be directed to Van Allen at 715-425-3335 or MSCS@uwrf.edu.