BOONE, N.C. — ECR Software Corporation (ECRS), a locally owned business in Boone, has announced the establishment of a Computer Science High Achievers Scholarship for students in the Department of Computer Science at Appalachian State University.
The new scholarship program will provide collaborative mentoring and research opportunities to students pursuing computer science degrees who have expressed an interest in the development of innovative and/or entrepreneurial ideas.
“ECRS has consistently supported our students and the university. This is a great example of their leadership in our community that helps our students grow to serve the region,” said Dr. Rahman Tashakkori, chair of the Department of Computer Science and the Lowe’s Distinguished Professor of Computer Science.
“The ECRS scholarships will provide an opportunity to computer science students to experience mentoring and collaborative learning as they work with their peers in other programs.”
Over the next four years, ECRS will award a total of $176,000 in scholarship support to eight computer science undergraduates and two graduate students in the department. The first cohort will join the current seven ECRS Computer Science Innovation and Entrepreneurship scholars in fall 2019.
Accepted incoming first-year recipients will receive a $4,000 scholarship per year for four years upon meeting the program requirements, and the accepted incoming graduate students will each receive a $12,000 fellowship in their first and second years of study.
All recipients will have opportunities to collaborate and share research with each other, as well as work closely with department faculty members and report on their research during Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) seminars at Appalachian, in which Appalachian’s interdisciplinary cohort of S-STEM scholars also participates.
The ECRS scholars may also have the opportunity to participate in internships and part-time or full-time employment provided by ECRS and other technology-related companies.
In addition, the graduate fellows will each work with a faculty member in the Department of Computer Science and a mentor at ECRS to conduct both general and specific research, such as computer vision and machine learning.
Over the past several years, ECRS has worked closely with faculty and students in the Department of Computer Science at Appalachian on various research projects, student programs, scholarship opportunities and other activities.
In 2016, the company donated a computer with a powerful graphics processing unit (GPU) that allowed students to solve highly parallelizable problems in a hands-on course around computer architecture, and in fall 2018, Appalachian partnered with ECRS to create a mutually beneficial training program designed for students in its Scholars with Diverse Abilities Program (SDAP).
ECRS employs many graduates from Appalachian’s computer science program in its development, distribution and support of world-class retail automation systems.
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About ECR Software Corporation (ECRS)
ECR Software Corporation (ECRS), headquartered in Boone, North Carolina, was started in 1989 by young entrepreneur and Appalachian alumnus Pete Catoe ’92. ECRS is an award-winning, innovative company bringing together retail software, hardware and services to create solutions in retail automation. Since its inception, ECRS has grown into a leading provider of retail automation systems to merchants in North America and beyond. Learn more at https://www.ecrs.com.
About the Department of Computer Science
Appalachian’s Department of Computer Science provides a rigorous, high-quality education that prepares students for the computing industry or graduate education. It offers a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science, which is accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET, and a Master of Science degree in computer science. Learn more at https://compsci.appstate.edu.
About the College of Arts and Sciences
The College of Arts and Sciences is home to 16 academic departments, one stand-alone academic program, two centers and one residential college. These units span the humanities and the social, mathematical and natural sciences. The College of Arts and Sciences aims to develop a distinctive identity built upon our university's strengths, traditions and unique location. The college’s values lie not only in service to the university and local community, but through inspiring, training, educating and sustaining the development of its students as global citizens. There are approximately 6,100 student majors in the college. As the college is also largely responsible for implementing Appalachian's general education curriculum, it is heavily involved in the education of all students at the university, including those pursuing majors in other colleges. Learn more at https://cas.appstate.edu.
About Appalachian State University
As the premier public undergraduate institution in the state of North Carolina, Appalachian State University prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The Appalachian Experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and to embrace diversity and difference. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Appalachian is one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina System. Appalachian enrolls more than 19,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.