Real World Experience for IT students

Information Technology students are expanding their networks and gaining professional, real world experience through the Association for Information Technology Professionals (AITP).

AITP welcomes any IT students along with CIS, CIT, and ISI majors. This organization is available to those who are interested in gaining more experience and creating networks.

Ferris State senior and AITP president, Arielle Kohler, has found that her membership with this nationally recognized chapter has provided her with valuable experience and knowledge.

“AITP is here to help any of these types of majors to gain professional experience as well as leadership and transferable skills that are needed for the workforce,” said Kohler. “It also provides a social atmosphere by providing networking and social events you may not get as an IT major.”

Each year, AITP brings speakers from reputable companies to speak to their organization. The group also coordinates tours in which students have the opportunity to get a first glance at what an IT career is all about.

Companies, such as Amway, have visited Ferris to talk to IT students about the field and to also provide on-campus interviews. For example, this semester, AITP is hosting Tom White of IBM who will be giving a presentation to members.

“We try to bring businesses here and to tour them so people know what opportunities are out there and so they can discover what they’re interested in,” Kohler said. “We’ve had many students get hired through the group. We’re actually a point of contact for the businesses because they will contact our group first, before they send out notifications of opportunities through e-mail blasts.”

AITP also promotes the value of internships and encourages their members to have hands-on learning. Last summer, Kohler interned with Amway. This year she will be interning with Campus Entertainment.

“Basically, you don’t know how to be a professional until you are out in the field. My favorite part about the internship is the global aspect of Amway. I learned how communication is important, but the corporate setting also gets prepares you for that professional setting,” said Kohler.