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Upskilling to Meet Cloud Talent Needs

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2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual Conference

Publication Date

July 26, 2021

Start Date

July 26, 2021

End Date

July 19, 2022

Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

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NSF Grantees Poster Session

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Lawrence Eric Meyer Jr. Miami Dade College Orcid 16x16

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Mr. Lawrence Eric Meyer is an Associate Professor Senior in thte School of Engineering and Technology at Miami Dade College (MDC). He has been working as the Co-PI on the Dade Enterprise Cloud Computing Initiative (DECCI) cloud grant providing cloud educational opportunities to high school and minority underserved populations. He assisted in the creation of MDC’s current cloud curriculum and has been awarded a $600,000 ATE NSF grant to create an advanced cloud degree program for upskilling and reskilling the regional workforce. Holding AWS Solutions Architect and Developer certifications, along with Azure and Google cloud he is leading the effort into multi-cloud implementations for education in DevOps and Data Analytics.

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Elodie Billionniere Miami Dade College Orcid 16x16

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Dr. Elodie Billionniere is an Associate Professor in the School of Engineering and Technology at Miami Dade College (MDC). She has helped MDC secure over $3 million in federal funding the past three years for STEM and emerging technology education programs as well as a collaborative high tech learning hub, Cloud Computing Center, with the aim of providing further opportunities to minoritized populations to meet workforce needs. With industry partners, she has been instrumental in the creation of new educational pathways in Enterprise Cloud Computing, which are unique in the state of Florida. She is the Lead Faculty for these programs. She holds several industry certifications, including PMP, ScrumMaster, AWS Certified Solutions Architect, and AWS Certified Big Data. She holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Arizona State University.

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Miami Dade College, based on demands in the workforce, has focused on creating emerging technology education, particularly Cloud technology. Business Cloud migration has accelerated over the last several years, and companies around the world are investing in their future with the cloud. With the increased demand for cloud-skilled professionals the last four years, we launched a cloud literacy initiative to meet cloud talent needs. This initiative aims to provide our students in the computing/IT fields with the knowledge, abilities and skills needed to accelerate their cloud-related learning.

With the support of NSF ATE, we collaborated with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to create a new pathway for the next generation of cloud computing professionals. The course sequence was designed in conjunction with an AWS Educate team assisting in the design of course sequencing and degree plans to leverage their educational experience in teaching cloud technologies. The core curriculum designed for the cloud literacy initiative leveraged an existing pathway for an associate degree in networking technology, and then partially pulled classes from the design of the bachelor’s in information systems technology degree. The classes identified, used current offerings across our programs and included a focus on the supporting infrastructure of cloud systems: Databases, Linux OS, and Networking. With these three foundational classes that were cloudified, three cloud-focused courses based on industry certifications were developed: Cloud Essentials for AWS Cloud Practitioner and Cloud Infrastructure and Services for AWS Solutions Architect certifications with a capstone class completing the academic pathway. This new curriculum includes pedagogical changes to utilize project-based learning by incorporating resources and learning from multiple sources to best mimic real-world application, data, and design attributes. In addition to the associate degree, a college credit certificate in cloud computing was created to strengthen (re-)entering students in the workforce and dual enrollment students with credentials and employability skills by using high impact educational practices.

Our cloud curriculum incorporates project-based learning approach, a real-world experience using the cloud technology. This poster shares strategies and pedagogical tools for teaching a cloud-focused curriculum for broader impact and student success.

Meyer, L. E., & Billionniere, E. (2021, July), Upskilling to Meet Cloud Talent Needs Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference.

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