Create your future. Shape your world.
Computer Science at Earlham is unique in many ways. Our diverse faculty and rich facilities provide an environment that fosters an interdisciplinary approach to theory and practice in the field. Computer Science works closely with Mathematics, Physics and most of the other Natural Sciences, and has ties to linguistics and logic.
Our curriculum is built on the fundamental paradigms of the discipline: theory, abstraction and design. These three are woven throughout the Department, binding the sometimes disparate topics of Computer Science into a cohesive body of knowledge and experience. Because of the rapidly changing character of the field, we review the curriculum regularly. Our work is heavily influenced by the liberal arts mission of the College, in particular our interdisciplinary approach and our inclusion of the cultural, legal and ethical issues surrounding computing within the curriculum. We provide our graduates with the ability to make informed decisions about the appropriate use of technology in a variety of contexts.
At a practical level we rely heavily on open source software, such as Linux distributions, FreeBSD, PostgreSQL, MySQL, etc. These tools and many others like them form the software stack that supports all of the teaching and research activities of students and faculty. Students, faculty and alumni contribute to a wide variety of open source packages, particularly in the area of scientific and parallel computing.
Earlham offers many opportunities for students to apply their studies in Computer Science to real-world problems, ranging from applied computer science to more research oriented work. All of the work we do involves close interaction between students and faculty. A variety of opportunities assist students in reinforcing and extending their classroom learning experiences. Groups of students are responsible for most of the Departmental computing infrastructure:
Our curriculum's strong mix of theory and practice, in conjunction with our applied and research activities, produces graduates prepared for a variety of careers in computer science. Students who major or minor in CS have gone on to advanced studies in computer science and other disciplines; software engineering positions; and system, network and database administration.
Major technology companies who have employed our graduates include Lucent, Amazon.com, Oracle, Sybase, Microsoft, MCI/WorldCom and Ontrack. A number of successful technology companies have been started by Earlham graduates, including Organic Online (Web site design and hosting), Ray Ontko and Company (software development and consulting services), Summersault (website design and hosting) and Infocom (Internet service provider).
Our majors have pursued graduate work in computer science at such institutions as Indiana University; University of California, Santa Cruz; and the universities of Central Florida, Delaware, Indiana, Maryland, Oregon, Pittsburgh, Toronto and Washington.