DUBOIS – When Cody Weible graduated with his Bachelor’s degree in information sciences and technology (IST) from Penn State DuBois in May, he was already immersed in the job search like almost every new college graduate.
He contemplated where his first “starter” job may be, and how he would be able to move up the ladder into positions at big name companies. Fortunately for him, he was well enough prepared to be able to skip right over several stepping stones.
With his fresh degree from the Penn State DuBois IST program, the Brookville native has accepted a position with Amazon.com, the largest online retailer in the world. Weible starts with Amazon in August, at the internet giant’s Herndon, Va. office, as a systems engineer.
He will be in charge of reliability and management of Amazon’s cloud services, which holds their online storage of information. He’ll maintain availability of tools and manage operations of the cloud and information hosting sites.
“I’m still amazed,” Weible said of his budding career. “Everyone hopes to go to work for a big company like Amazon or Google; to get that opportunity is amazing. I don’t think I’d have the opportunity to do this if I went anywhere else but Penn State DuBois. This hands-on program gave me this opportunity.”
The hands-on learning Weible credits with preparing him for success came largely from Video Game Day, an event held once each semester at Penn State DuBois that is entirely run by IST students. The event draws hundreds of attendees by offering them the chance to play the latest games and gaming consoles. Video Game Day offers IST students lessons in networking and systems management, as the students set up a network of over 100 computers along with a variety game consoles.
“Game Day is a real-world scenario of networking and monitoring availability,” Weible said. “When I interviewed with Amazon, they were very impressed that our campus holds such an event with almost 300 people attending. I can say the degree program at Penn State DuBois helped prepare me for a lot of what I’ll do in this job, and Video Game Day prepared me the most.”
IST program leader and senior instructor Jason Long said teaching those valuable lessons were his intention when he developed the Video Game Day event. Long said, “Yes, Video Game Day is a fun, safe night for the campus and campus communities to play games, but it gives our students the hands-on network experience that employers are seeking. Penn State DuBois may be small, but having events and learning opportunities like this is how we produce students that will succeed in large organizations.”
With revenue topping $74 billion dollars in 2013, to say Amazon.com is a large organization may be an understatement. Weible summed up the significance of his opportunity, and his appreciation for it by saying, “Amazon, Google, these big tech companies; It’s like an engineer going to work for Boeing. It’s the top of the field. These companies are trying out new technology, changing the field. When you work there, you could be working on the next big thing.”