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The New Face of Internet Technology is Green

Once upon a time, the phrase "green degree" might have conjured up images of crunchy eco-awareness courses or preparation for life as a park ranger. This is all well and good for future park rangers and conservationists, but the term never gathered much clout amongst the futuristic, technological crowds. Now, however, that is all about to change.

With the help of IBM, Omaha's Metropolitan Community College is developing a two-year associate degree program in green data center management. According to FastCompany, students of this program will make good use of IBM products and a $1.8 million grant from the Department of Labor to teach in-depth, hands-on classes in subjects like remote access, networking security, data center racks and cabling, and center management. The end result would be data center experts with significant knowledge in energy efficiency.

Why did IBM choose to team up with a school in Nebraska for this endeavor? It wasn't entirely by chance. "Omaha is at the intersection of east-west and north-south fiber optic networks," reads the article, "and as a result the city has become something of a hub for communications and information services companies. That, in turn, has led to a demand for data center employees in the area." IT World reports Tom Pensabene, the Dean of IT at MCC, stating that "we're seeing a dramatic increase in demand here in Nebraska for specialists who understand how to help companies reduce the costs associated with running an energy-intensive data center," making it the perfect college in terms of both supply and demand.

As far as the sudden interest in green IT degrees, officials are calling it a crucial evolution of the science. Mark Hanny, an executive with IBM, told IT World that "Green has become essential to all IT organizations and this degree is designed to give students the skills they need to build more efficient data centers worldwide." IT professionals on the whole can expect a bright career future, but an IT professional with education in cutting energy costs and running more efficient databases will be as valuable to companies as they come.

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