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Campus - 27.09.2022 - 00:00

New Computer Science talents begin Bachelor's programme at the HSG for the first time

In September, the first class of the Bachelor's programme in Computer Science began their studies at the HSG. This makes it possible for students to complete a technical university education in St.Gallen at the HSG for the first time. With this further milestone, the IT education offensive aims to counter the shortage of skilled workers in Eastern Switzerland.

27 September 2022. Since the voters of the Canton of St.Gallen approved the IT Education Offensive (ITBO) in 2019 with almost 70 per cent in favour, a metamorphosis of the cantonal education landscape has begun: From primary school to top international research, the personnel, content and infrastructural basis is being created at the same time so that Eastern Switzerland is successfully keeping pace with digitalisation. 

Strengthening St.Gallen and the region as a business location in the long term

For the HSG, this is the beginning of a new era, as it has not offered any technical degree programmes until now. "Bringing computer science as a scientific discipline to the University of St.Gallen also means further developing the culture, structures and self-image of the HSG," says Dr. Jochen Müller, Managing Director of the School of Computer Science. But persuasion is not only needed on campus. For many, the University of St.Gallen is first and foremost a business university. This was also evident at the OBA and other career and school-leaving fairs. The interest in computer science is high, but the connection between computer science and the University of St.Gallen is still unclear to many visitors. "We are certain, however, that this combination will be self-evident in just a few years and will make the HSG as well as the business location of St.Gallen even more attractive," says Prof. Dr. Barbara Weber, founding dean of the School of Computer Science.

The positive effects of this are likely to become really visible only gradually. Against the backdrop of the ITBO's goals and corporate reality, not only must more IT talent be trained in Eastern Switzerland. They also need to stay in the region and, for example, create jobs as entrepreneurs or implement the digital transformation of local companies as managers. 

Innovation, talent and start-ups for Eastern Switzerland

In this way, the business location can be strengthened in the long term. "This is exactly where the speciality lies: we want to train technically skilled computer scientists with an entrepreneurial mindset. Eastern Switzerland needs innovative spirit and talent that can not only develop software, but also get their ideas off the ground and found start-ups. It needs leaders who not only recognise the relevance of IT, but can also competently assess its potential and limitations. This requires a specific educational profile, which has now been created," says Prof. Dr. Siegfried Handschuh, programme director of the Bachelor in Computer Science. Those who study computer science at the University of St.Gallen therefore also attend lectures in business subjects.

It remains to be seen whether the 44 new Bachelor's students will include founders of tech start-ups or inventors. One thing is certain: with this further ITBO milestone, Eastern Switzerland is one step closer to its goal of reducing the shortage of IT specialists.

Furter information about the Bachelor of Computer Science: 
www.unisg.ch/en/studium/bachelor/computer-science

Image: Adobe Stock / BullRun

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