Category Archives: Data Center Operations

DCO Tech Advancing In-Demand Technology

NOVA’s DCO Tech Grant will be highlighted at the NSF ATE Principal Investigators’ Conference in October.

On October 26-28, NOVA SySTEMic director Josh Labrie and Stack Infrastructure’s VP (and NOVA professor) TJ Ciccone will present DCO Tech at the National Science Foundation (NSF) Advanced Technological Education (ATE) Principal Investigators’ (PI) Conference in Washington D.C. The conference will bring together more than 850 NSF ATE grantees and their project partners to focus on the critical issues related to advanced technological education.

NOVA’s DCO Tech Grant supports NOVA’s Engineering Tech Programs and is designed to increase regional capacity for training in Engineering Technology (ET) and Data Center Operations (DCO) through expanded recruitment, employment, training, and increased collaboration between industry, K-12 educators, and faculty.

This year, as part of DCO Tech, NOVA SySTEMic conducted successful Bridge Programs for high school juniors and seniors (bridging the gap between HS and college), and introduced students to Data Center Operations and Engineering Technology. Bridge students toured 2 NOVA campuses, visited industry partners (Micron and STACK Infrastructure) and conducted hands-on activities at NOVA’s mechatronics and data center labs. The program featured guest speakers from NOVA’s student support offices, IET faculty members, and industry volunteers. 20 high school students completed the 2-week program and earned 1 college credit with the opportunity to earn their OSHA 10 certification. NOVA provided free transportation between NOVA campuses to reduce barriers to participation.

One of the hallmarks of DCO Tech’s Bridge programs is that they can improve attitudes towards STEM disciplines and awareness of career opportunities. One student reflected “I really enjoyed building connections and understanding the different fields of STEM. I never understood data centers in this depth. I’m very glad it’s in-person and we get to see NOVA campuses.”

In addition, DCO Tech helps provide career readiness for NOVA students through the Career and Leadership Readiness Institute (CLRI), which enhances leadership skills and develops career connections, teaching students how to interview, create a standout resume, network effectively, and manage interpersonal skills. Students who complete CLRI will receive priority consideration for paid internships with industry partners. New CLRI courses begin on Oct 18 and you can sign up for info sessions on Oct 4, 6, and 11. Applications are due on October 12. Find out more and sign up at https://www.nvcc.edu/career-services/clri.html

Another component of DCO Tech is the K12 Educator Externship, which raises awareness for Engineering Technology and Data Center Operations career pathways among secondary educators. This Engineering Technology Externship is designed to provide teachers, counselors, and administrators with first-hand knowledge of engineering technology and data center operations through industry site visits and engagement with NOVA’s related programs of study. This year we had 18 externship completers who visited Micron Technology, Stack Infrastructure, and NOVA’s Fab Lab to help inform them on creating an action plan to improve the pipeline of students entering the workforce as technicians for DCO or Engineering Technology. In polling, 100% of participants rated the overall externship as above average or excellent. All participants expressed moderate to very confident abilities in educating their colleagues on guiding students to ET and DCO careers.

One educator said “we were given a clear picture of the type of student that would succeed in this industry, the skillsets needed, along with the curriculum. This, along with actually touring the facility, increased my awareness and as such, I feel more confident in sharing this with students, parents, and teachers.”

**We will be continuing the Summer Bridge Programs and Secondary Educator Externship Programs in 2023. Complete this form to be notified when registration is live. You can also sign up for the monthly NOVA IET newsletter which will have details about the 2023 programs as soon as they are available.

To learn more about Engineering Technology at NOVA visit https://www.nvcc.edu/academics/areas/applied-technologies/engineering-technology.html

For more about Data Center Operations at NOVA, go to https://www.nvcc.edu/academics/areas/applied-technologies/data-center-operations.html

To learn more about the NSF ATE PI Conference, click here

 

AFCOM Interns Ready to Pursue Data Center Opportunities

For the second year in a row AFCOM Potomac Chapter, supported by NOVA through the Go VA DEEP IET grant, put students through a 10 week summer internship program. The objective of the internship is to engage undergraduate students from multiple disciplines having them observe and assist with projects within the data center community.

This year 12 interns participated, with 8 of them coming from the NOVA Data Center Operations Program (DCO). AFCOM has increased the number of internships offered year over year and won national recognition from AFCOM National at Data Center World 2021. By supporting the internship project, companies can actively participate in bringing up the next wave of talent in data centers. “We will be continuing this annually to help introduce and drive young talent into the data center space,” said Stuart Dyer, Global Data Center Strategy and Planning, IBM, and AFCOM Potomac Chapter Director of Scholarships & Internships. “Students return to school armed with good references, and a solid foundation of influence, and in some instances, land jobs with their sponsor companies.”

Additionally, AFCOM gives annually to the DCO program through the Wendy Darling Scholarship. This year AFCOM increased its support to $20,000 for course scholarships. “With NOVA sponsoring our internship program, it completes the circle of investing in these students’ future in the data center industry” said Dyer. This year’s donation demonstrated AFCOM’s commitment and support to making the NOVA DCO program a top generator for talent for the Data Center industry.

AFCOM, the interns and their partners celebrated the successful completion of the internships and the generous donation at Top Golf in Ashburn.

AFCOM is a professional association proven to advance the career of IT and data center professionals. For over 40 years, they’ve been educating, connecting & lifting our members to help them meet the growing demands facing the IT and Data Center industry.

More about AFCOM here

DCO Tech Grant

Bearded Black IT Engineer Standing and Posing with Crossed Arms in the Middle of a Working Data Center Server Room with Server Computers Working on a Rack.

DCO Tech: Expanding Regional Capacity for Training in Engineering Technology and Data Center Operations

Awarded in July 2021, the NSF Advanced Technological Education grant supports NOVA’s Engineering Tech Programs. DCO Tech is designed to increase regional capacity for training in Engineering Technology and Data Center Operations through expanded recruitment, employment training, and increased collaboration between industry, K-12 educators, and faculty.

NOVA’s Engineering Technology program offers 2-year Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) and 1-year Career Study Certificates (C.S.C.), as well as a Data Center Operations specialization.

Northern Virginia is the largest data center market in the United States and is forecast to continue growing. Additionally, Micron Technology has committed to a $3B expansion of its regional manufacturing capacity. DCO Tech is partnering with employers to meet the demand for engineering technicians.

What the NSF DCO Tech Grant Supports:

Bridge Programs for High School Juniors and Seniors

Through the DCO Tech Grant, NOVA IET offers FREE 2-week summer bridge programs to help juniors and seniors get ready for college. During these programs, students receive an introduction to one of three in-demand technology fields: Computer Science, Information Technology, or Engineering Technology, tour at regional employers, and meet NOVA faculty, students, and staff. Bridge students will gain critical skills and have the opportunity to receive college credit.

For more information about our Summer Bridge Programs go to: https://www.nvcc.edu/academics/divisions/it/programs.html


Externship For Secondary Educators

>> For secondary school CTE administrators, teachers, and/or counselors who are interested in guiding students into a successful tech career.

This externship equips educators to build awareness for Engineering Technology (ET) and Data Center Operations (DCO) careers in the region and the educational pathways NOVA provides to prepare students for these in-demand and high-wage careers. Educator Externship participants receive a stipend after completing the following activities:

  1. Attend an industry tour of Micron Technology, where attendees will see the daily operations and gain insight into career opportunities in Engineering Technology. 
  2. Attend an industry tour of a data center, which will provide first-hand visuals of a data center’s daily operations. There will also be a presentation on data center careers and opportunities. 
  3. Attend a tour/professional development day at the NOVA Manassas Fab Lab. The goal is to create clear pathways and provide materials to guide high school students into NOVA’s Engineering Technology and Data Center Operations programs. 

>> For more info contact Natasha Shuh-Nuhfer at nschuhnuhfer@nvcc.edu 


Externship For Industry Professionals

>> For engineering technology professionals and data center technicians to inspire the next generation of engineering technicians.

This externship engages professionals in the Engineering Technology industry to support high school students who are learning about technician careers, and equips professionals to teach NOVA’s engineering tech programs. Industry Externship participants receive a stipend after completing the following activities:

  1. An introduction to NOVA’s engineering technology programs and facilities.
  2. Learn credentials required to teach as an adjunct instructor at NOVA and explore the pathways to becoming a credentialed engineering technology or data center operations faculty member.
  3. Develop and deliver two lessons for the summer bridge program to inspire high school students to pursue careers in Engineering Technology.

Participants will attend an in-person professional development session at the NOVA Fab Lab (NOVA Manassas Trailside Building) where they will create their lesson presentation for NOVA’s Engineering Tech Summer Bridge Program.

>> For more info contact Natasha Shuh-Nuhfer at nschuhnuhfer@nvcc.edu 


Internships with the Career and Leadership Readiness Institute (CLRI)

>> More information about CLRI Internships supported by the DCO Tech Grant coming soon


Veterans

>> More information about DCO Tech Veteran Programs supported by the DCO Tech Grant coming soon


NOVA Academic Programs Supported by the DCO Tech Grant:

Click Here for more info about Engineering Technology at NOVA
Click Here for more info about Data Center Operations at NOVA

Supporting Technology Programs at NOVA

NOVA IET: NOVA’s Information and Engineering Technology Program. Learn more about Information Technology, Engineering Technology, Data Center Operations, Cybersecurity, Information Systems Technology, and Cloud Computing https://www.nvcc.edu/iet.

NOVA SySTEMic: NOVA’s STEM Program to equip students for in-demand technology careers and expand regional capacity for STEM talent. Learn more about STEM Careers, NOVA Fab Lab activities, Summer Bridge Programs (in Computer Science, Information Technology, and Engineering Technology), STEM Camps, Teacher Professional Development, STEM Competitions, Expos, and more: https://www.nvcc.edu/systemic

#WeDoSTEM #InDemandTech #HighTechHighWage

Data Center Tours and Career Info

Data Centers are on the rise, especially in Northern Virginia. Demand for Data Center Technicians is soaring and NOVA has the only fully accredited 2-year data center degree program in the state of Virginia.

Last month NOVA faculty and staff as well as Loudon County Public School educators participated in a tour of STACK Infrastructure, which is a leading data center company built from the ground up to address the full stack of client critical infrastructure needs, today and into the future.

Participants were guided through the facility by STACK employees and provided descriptions of data center equipment and procedures. TJ Ciccone, VP of critical operations STACK who also serves as a NOVA adjunct instructor in Data Center Operations (DCO), conducted the tour and educated participants on the mission-critical fields of DCO and engineering technology (ET).

Some of the points about Data Center careers that TJ Ciccone highlights are:

  • The pay is incredible. Students typically make $30-$35 with no experience.
  • Demand is very high in the field. There are 2 million people working data centers worldwide, with that number expected to increase to 2.2mil in the next five years. We need 40,000 people a year with very little outlets to create new candidates.
  • This is a career and not just a job. Outside of data center engineering, there are a multitude of career paths you can take once you are in. These include project management, sales, sales engineering, HR, legal, and more.
  • Data centers are global. You could literally transfer anywhere in the world.
  • Data center skills are transferable. You could work at any number of data center providers once you are trained on the theory of how they work.

NOVA faculty and staff were able to network with LCPS educators and provide them with information such as the points above for upcoming NOVA programs that will help build pipelines for K-12 students into the DCO and ET career fields.

More tours of STACK are currently planned for April 22 and May 20. Contact TJ Ciccone at tciccone@nvcc.edu for more information.

#WeDoSTEM #InDemandTech #HighTechHighWage

Engineering Tech Externship Program at NOVA

NOVA has 2 exciting Externship opportunities for 1) Secondary Educators and 2) Industry Professionals in Engineering Technology. These externships are supported by an NSF DCO Tech Grant.

1) Externship For Secondary Educators
Register at: iet.novastem.us/Externship2 

>> For secondary school CTE administrators, teachers, and/or counselors who are interested in guiding students into a successful tech career.

This externship equips educators to build awareness for Engineering Technology (ET) and Data Center Operations (DCO) careers in the region and the educational pathways NOVA provides to prepare students for these in-demand and high-wage careers. Educator Externship participants receive a stipend after completing the following activities:

  1. Attend an industry tour of Micron Technology, where attendees will see the daily operations and gain insight into career opportunities in Engineering Technology. 
  2. Attend an industry tour of a data center, which will provide first-hand visuals of a data center’s daily operations. There will also be a presentation on data center careers and opportunities. 
  3. Attend a tour/professional development day at the NOVA Manassas Fab Lab. The goal is to create clear pathways and provide materials to guide high school students into NOVA’s Engineering Technology and Data Center Operations programs. 

Micron Tours: April 5th or May 16th
Data Center Tours: April 22nd, May 20th, or June 30th
NOVA Fab Lab Tours/PD Day: July 22nd or 29th 

>> Register at: iet.novastem.us/Externship2
>> For more info contact Matt Lambert at blambert@nvcc.edu

Click Here for more info about Engineering Technology at NOVA
Click Here for more info about Data Center Operations at NOVA


2) Externship For Industry Professionals
Register at iet.novastem.us/Externship

>> For engineering technology professionals and data center technicians to inspire the next generation of engineering technicians.

This externship engages professionals in the Engineering Technology industry to support high school students who are learning about technician careers, and equips professionals to teach NOVA’s engineering tech programs. Industry Externship participants receive a stipend after completing the following activities:

  1. An introduction to NOVA’s engineering technology programs and facilities.
  2. Learn credentials required to teach as an adjunct instructor at NOVA and explore the pathways to becoming a credentialed engineering technology or data center operations faculty member.
  3. Develop and deliver two lessons for the summer bridge program to inspire high school students to pursue careers in Engineering Technology.

Participants will attend an in-person professional development session at the NOVA Fab Lab (NOVA Manassas Trailside Building) on June 10th, where they will create their lesson presentation for NOVA’s Engineering Tech Summer Bridge Program, to be taught on either June 24th or 30th.

Virtual PD Sessions: May 5th, 12th, and 19th
In-Person PD Session: June 10th, 2022 at the NOVA Fab Lab
Bridge Program Instructing: June 24th or 30th

>> Register at iet.novastem.us/Externship
>> For more info contact Matt Lambert at blambert@nvcc.edu

Click Here for more info about Engineering Technology at NOVA
Click Here for more info about Data Center Operations at NOVA


Supporting Technology Programs at NOVA

NOVA IET: NOVA’s Information and Engineering Technology Program. Learn more about Information Technology, Engineering Technology, Data Center Operations, Cybersecurity, Information Systems Technology, and Cloud Computing https://www.nvcc.edu/iet.

NOVA SySTEMic: NOVA’s STEM Program to equip students for in-demand technology careers and expand regional capacity for STEM talent. Learn more about STEM Careers, NOVA Fab Lab activities, Summer Bridge Programs (in Computer Science, Information Technology, and Engineering Technology), STEM Camps, Teacher Professional Development, STEM Competitions, Expos, and more: https://www.nvcc.edu/systemic

#WeDoSTEM #InDemandTech #HighTechHighWage

IET Events In October


October 13: IET Virtual Job and Internship Fair

NOVA IET and NOVA Workforce are hosting a virtual Information and Engineering Technologies Job and Internship Fair for NOVA students and alumni in Career Connection on Wednesday, October 13, 2021 at 12-3 PM EST. Companies from various IT industries will be represented including Cybersecurity, Data Center Operations, Cloud Computing, and more. Get connected with the companies in your field for networking and internship & job opportunities. Contact novacareerservices@nvcc.edu with questions

Register to attend at iet.novastem.us/JobFair


October 14: Women in IET Coffee Chat

Join us for the October Women in IET and Computer Science Coffee Chat where we will dive into how following your passions can lead to career opportunities. In this 1-hour panel discussion, panelists will discuss how they made the switch to a STEM career after starting out in a completely different field and how you can carve out the career you want by following your own unique journey.

Register at http://iet.novastem.us/TechWomen


October 18 – October 22: NOVA IET Cyber Week

As part of National Cybersecurity awareness month, the NOVA IET division will host a series of virtual events and workshops during Cyber week 2021 to educate, engage and inspire students interested in pursuing careers in cybersecurity. Each day we will host a different workshop that addresses a relevant topic including taking the CompTIA Security+ exam, navigating a career in Cyber security, and writing a cybersecurity resume. For an overview of the week’s events see the list below. You can register for all NOVA IET Cyber Week Events at iet.novastem.us/Register

Monday, Oct 18 6:00 PM- 7:00 PM – Acing the CompTIA Security+ Exam Part 1

Kick-off NOVA IET Cybersecurity Awareness Week with a deep dive into what it takes to ace the CompTIA Security+ Exam. This is a two-part workshop with Part 1 being led by NOVA IET Professor, Kwabena (KK) Konadu. In this one-hour virtual workshop, Professor KK will cover best practices and resources for preparing for the CompTIA Security+ Exam, exam topics, and walk attendees through a practice round of answering multiple-choice questions. iet.novastem.us/Register

Tuesday, Oct 19 6:30 PM-7:30 PM – Cybersercurity Resume Writing with Katia’s Cylife

You can’t land a job in Cybersecurity without a good Cybersecurity resume. Join professional Cybersecurity Resume writer and founder of Katia’s Cylife, Katia Dean as she walks you through actionable steps to build a dynamic resume tailored for cybersecurity roles. In this session you will discuss resume action verbs, design tips and tricks, and how to consider positioning yourself. Katia will also walk you through a live resume feedback session and a brief demo on the NIST 800-181 Cybersecurity Workforce Framework. iet.novastem.us/Register

Wednesday, Oct 20 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM – Landing a Job in Cybersecurity Recruiters Panel

On day 3 of NOVA IET Cyber Week a panel of cybersecurity recruiters will share their perspectives on what it takes to land a job in cybersecurity. If you are job searching, making a career switch into cyber, or just curious about what a career in cybersecurity looks like, join us for this virtual panel discussion to get your questions answered. iet.novastem.us/Register

Thursday, Oct 21 6:00 PM-7:30 PM- IET Speaker Series featuring Nick Espinosa

Cybersecurity is an exploding industry and with over five million vacant positions available around the world, the need for qualified professionals is immediate! In our second installment of the IET Speaker Series, Nick Espinosa, cybersecurity thought leader, TEDx Speaker, and regular columnist for Forbes, will talk about the state of the world today as it relates to cybersecurity for everyone and the issues we all face together. Join us virtually on Thursday, October 21, 2021, at 6 PM EST as Nick will help us understand what a career path in cybersecurity looks like so everyone who is interested can join the ranks of those who are defending our governments, businesses, educational institutions, healthcare, and more, around the world! iet.novastem.us/Register

Friday, Oct 22 10:00 AM- 11:30 AM – Acing the CompTIA Security+ Exam Part II

End NOVA IET Cyber Week by finishing up your CompTIA Security+ Exam Prep with Zach Lawrence, NOVA IET Cybersecurity Professor. In this 90-minute session Zach will walk you through how to approach answering performance-based questions on the CompTIA Security+ Exam. iet.novastem.us/Register


 IET and Computer Science Clubs

Cyber.OPS – Cybersecurity Club Manassas Campus

Cyber.OPS Club is held every Thursday in Trailside room 249 on the Manassas campus from 5:30PM – 7:00PM.  Fall semester meetings will focus on the following topics: Computer Hardware, Operating Systems and Services, Cloud Computing, Computer Networking and Advanced topics: Firewalls, UTM and IDS/IPS.  Spring semester meetings will focus primarily on offensive security.  Club members will be exposed to a broad range of topics Including but not limited to intro to Windows and Linux, Web servers and more.

For more info contact Zach Lawrence mlawrence@nvcc.edu or Santwana Das sdas@nvcc.edu

 

 

New AFCOM DCO Scholarship

Potomac AFCOM Offers New Scholarship Opportunity for NOVA’s Data Center Operations Program

The Potomac chapter of AFCOM (Association for Computer Operations Management) in conjunction with the NOVA Foundation is pleased to announce the Wendy Darling Scholarship, a fund of $10,000 honoring Potomac Chapter Board Member, Stuart Dyer’s mother, who passed away in October 2020.

“AFCOM’s mission is to provide educational advancement opportunities to its members, and we extend that mission to up-and-coming experts in this community by supporting their academic growth,” said Stuart Dyer, Global Data Center Strategy and Planning at IBM, and AFCOM Potomac Chapter director of scholarships & internships. “Losing my mother to this terrible pandemic, at the young age of 60, was an enormous and tragic loss. My mother always put my education first, and it was extremely important to her that I finished college. To be able to establish an AFCOM Scholarship in her honor is something that would make her proud, and I am honored that the AFCOM Board has made this gesture of kindness.”

NOVA’s Data Center Operations program develops students for entry-level positions in the fast-growing data center industry. This curriculum is designed to prepare students for employment in data centers or companies that support data center function as a technician, operator and/or technologist.

“I’m excited to be a part of this innovative program. As a teacher and as someone in the industry, this is a win-win for everyone involved. There is so much potential at NOVA. I’m looking forward to helping students get excited about the data center industry,” said TJ Ciccone, NOVA Adjunct Faculty and Vice President, STACK Infrastracture.

Wendy Darling Scholarships will provide a pathway that eliminates the cost for entering this program.

“We are proud of and grateful for our ongoing partnership with Potomac AFCOM. The Wendy Darling scholarship award is an investment of $10,000, which will provide $500 to each new student in our first class of data center operations program. Organizations like Potomac AFCOM are leading the way for NOVA students to achieve their educational and professional dreams in a high demand field,” said Kelly Persons, executive director of the NOVA Foundation.

AFCOM Potomac supports the states of Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia for individuals (members and non-members) who wish to learn about, participate in and network with the local data center community. AFCOM supports the advancement of data center and IT infrastructure professionals around the world by delivering comprehensive, vendor-neutral education and peer-to-peer networking to its members.

Learn more about the Wendy Darling scholarship by visiting: https://potomacafcom.webstarts.com/wendy-darling.html.

The NOVA Foundation is governed by a board of directors whose members come from both the public and private sectors in Northern Virginia and may hold their positions for up to three years. For additional information about the NOVA Foundation, visit https://giving.nvcc.edu/. For press inquiries, contact Hoang Nguyen, public information officer, at hdnguyen@nvcc.edu.

#WeDoSTEM