Southeastern opens new computer lab

Students at Southeastern Louisiana University will soon benefit from a high-tech computer lab thanks to a generous donation from Envoc, a web and mobile software design, development and application-hosting firm based in Baton Rouge, with a second location in Hammond. Pending University of Louisiana System Board approval, the new space will be named the Envoc Innovation Lab and is located in the newly constructed Computer Science and Technology Building on Southeastern’s campus. Cutting the ribbon are, from left, Southeastern President John L. Crain and Envoc CEO Calvin Fabre.

Students at Southeastern Louisiana University will soon benefit from a high-tech computer lab thanks to a donation from Envoc, a web and mobile software design, development and application-hosting firm with locations in Baton Rouge and Hammond.

Pending approval from the University of Louisiana System Board, the new space will be named the Envoc Innovation Lab. It is located in the newly constructed Computer Science and Technology Building on Southeastern’s campus.

After years of integrated teaching and mentorship in college classrooms, Envoc is investing in a more permanent way by funding development of the new lab, said Envoc CEO Calvin Fabre. Officially opened Jan. 29, the new lab will provide a work-like environment on campus that is an extension of Envoc’s company culture and mission to create a better reality.

“Many of our Envoceans at our Hammond office are Southeastern graduates, as am I, and we like to stay involved and create learning opportunities for future developers,” said Fabre, a 1990 computer science graduate.

“We personally help develop the computer science curriculum at Southeastern, and some of our Envoceans even facilitate project classes, offering students an opportunity to work side-by-side with thriving professionals on innovative projects. The Innovation Lab enhances that experience on campus.”

John Burris, Southeastern Assistant Professor of Computer Science and Undergraduate Coordinator of Computer Science and Industrial Technology, worked closely with Envoc to organize the lab’s conception and opening.

“Students are highly motivated by the opportunity to experience a real-world work environment, so the vision for the Innovation Lab was to immerse students in the environment of a software agency and encourage professionalism and innovation,” said Burris.

Designed to mirror Envoc’s offices and provide students with a variety of stations to work alone or with a group, the new lab contains a lounge area, two rows of modern workstations, two futuristic privacy chairs, and a section where students can virtually sit in on Envoc’s developer meetings.

Ghassan Alkadi, Professor of Computer Science, said the innovation center is “the result of education and software institutions coming together to invest in young developers.”

“The lab will provide an environment for computer science majors to receive professional mentorship, work on client-based projects, and gain knowledge beyond what can be self-taught or learned in a textbook,” Alkadi said.

For more information, contact the Department of Computer Science at (985) 549-5740.

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