Neumont College of Computer Science was built on a foundation of innovation. When other computer science programs focus on theories and lectures that don't provide adequate opportunities to develop the technical, project, and team skills needed to successfully transition from college to the workforce, Neumont’s founders took an alternative approach. They met with educators and industry leaders from across the country to design a curriculum that merges academic rigor, relevant professional knowledge, and exposure to cutting-edge technologies.
“At Neumont, we teach students to think critically and creatively to solve problems and to innovate,” said Jerry Pay, student innovations manager who oversees the college's Innovation Center. The Center connects students and graduates to resources beyond campus to help them turn their projects into businesses. These resources provide students with the tools they need to not only build prototypes of their ideas and then test those prototypes, but it also helps them build a business model around their product or idea to prepare them to launch a business. The Innovation Center also gives the students and alumni access to funding groups to help them complete the launch where necessary.
“Our commitment to innovation is something that is part of our foundation,” said Ben Fletcher, vice president information technology, “and innovative processes in the classroom should be second nature to our instructors." Prior to managing the institution's technology infrastructure, Fletcher helped develop the bachelor's degree in information systems and served as the program chair.
He said, "We teach computer science in a wholly different way—constantly pushing the boundaries of how to educate. Our project-based approached to education, with real-time employer feedback, means that innovation is inherent in what we do. Our students are solving real-world problems. And realistically, what our institution aims to inspire in students is ultimately an extension of what every member of Neumont’s staff, faculty, and administration should also be striving for: embracing creativity, imagination, and inventiveness.”