This year’s Seidenberg School’s Leadership and Service in Technology Award Reception honored not one but two distinguished individuals in the field of technology. On June 22, 2015, Seidenberg School Dean Dr. Amar Gupta gave awards to President and COO at GE Capital, Thomas Gentile, and President of Tata Consultancy Services Limited, Surya Kant.
The Leadership and Service in Technology (LST) award aims to recognize those who have made outstanding achievements in technology by demonstrating their commitment to development, innovation, research, and application within the field.
As a GE executive, Mr. Gentile has experience across a variety of disciplines and has been extremely successful in healthcare and finance. During the reception, he gave a presentation during which he spoke about the importance of science, technology, engineering, math, and computing skills (STEMC) in today’s world. He explained that around 20% of jobs today require some knowledge of STEMC disciplines, and that the number of jobs with this requirement is expected to grow by over 9 million in the next ten years – and that’s just in the USA!
Mr. Gentile also spoke about GE’s involvement with the STEMC community, particularly in its development. The GE Foundation, which is the philanthropic organization of GE, has invested over $250 million in k-12 education for STEMC initiatives. This includes projects across the nation, as well as around the world.
One such initiative includes the partnership with Pace University’s Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems. Together, GE and the Seidenberg School will be launching a new program that aims to promote STEMC studies and careers to high school girls. This will be done through a series of workshops, boot camps, and other opportunities that will allow high school girls to see the world of opportunities in STEMC studies and careers.
Not all was optimistic, though. Mr. Gentile talked about the growing challenges related to cybersecurity in an increasingly connected world. However, he was confident that Pace and the Seidenberg School would take a big part in the fight against cybercrime with the creation of cybersecurity innovations and the production of highly skilled cybersecurity graduates. He said that he looks forward to working with Dean Gupta and others to develop new cybersecurity approaches that involve persons from government, industry, and academia.
Surya Kant is the President of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), the largest global information technology consulting and services company headquartered in India. Mr. Kant heads the company’s operations in North America, the United Kingdom, and Europe. His achievements in the global software industry, where he has made significant contributions, earned him the LST award this year. Specializing in software quality assurance and delivery center management, Mr. Kant is also involved in cybersecurity – which is where his and TCS’ partnership with the Seidenberg School comes into play.
Not only does TCS share synergies with the Seidenberg School in cybersecurity, but global software development is a key initiative, too. Collaborations between the Seidenberg School and the honorees and organizations extend to a multitude of areas: support for STEM, STEAM or STEMC outreach, research collaborations, corporate education programs, and student internships and hiring – Seidenberg students, take note!
The Seidenberg School is honored to have hosted Mr. Gentile and Mr. Kant at the reception, as it is contributions from luminaries like them and their organizations that sustains the school and helps to prepare our students for rewarding careers in tech. Their involvement and inspiring stories helps us aim for success even more.