Marshall Computer Programming Technology

(MARSHALL, Texas) – The future of Texas State Technical College’s Computer Programming Technology program is shining as bright as a laptop screen.

Last spring, the program moved all of its classes online. Due to this, the college’s programs that were physically on five of TSTC’s campuses combined into one statewide unit. This means instructors are not tethered to one geographic campus to teach, but rather can work with students online from throughout Texas.

Phyllis Hollingshead, an instructor in TSTC’s Computer Programming Technology program, said she is teaching 60 students this semester in the Introduction to C++ Programming class.

“Now that we have moved fully online, I feel the program will grow,” she said. “Computer programmers are needed everywhere, even in East Texas.”

The East Texas Council of Governments, which encompasses 14 counties, had more than 1,400 software and web developers, programmers and testers that made a median annual wage of $87,100 as of the second quarter of 2020. There were more than 800 computer and information analysts making a median annual wage of $71,500 in the same period.

“Students willing to move to Austin, Dallas or Houston can make even more,” Hollingshead said.

Shannon Ferguson, statewide lead instructor in TSTC’s Computer Programming Technology program, said Citibank and Texas Farm Bureau are among the companies that have hired the college’s graduates in the past.

Ferguson is excited about the statewide Computer Programming Technology and Web Design and Development Technology programs taking part in the Austin Technology Council. The council focuses on supporting business and professional growth, providing networking and business mentoring opportunities and giving public policy representation to the tech industry.

“We hope to promote our graduates and get them into companies in that area,” Ferguson said.

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