Columbia State Community College & Tractor Supply Company Team Up to Provide Students with Workplace Technology Experience

(COLUMBIA, Tenn., Sept. 7, 2018) - Columbia State Community College teamed up with Tractor Supply Company (NASDAQ: TSCO), the largest rural lifestyle retail chain in the United States, to develop a capstone course in emerging technologies, which two students recently completed at the Company’s Store Support Center in Brentwood, Tenn.

“Tractor Supply is dedicated to supporting workforce development in Williamson County,” said Rob Mills, executive vice president, chief technology, digital commerce and strategy officer. “We recognize the importance of providing students with hands-on technology experience and are proud to be able to do so through our partnership with Columbia State.”

The new capstone course allows students to research emerging technologies in the retail industry, exploring areas of study such as Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, Big Data and Analytics, and other progressive topics in the technology industry.

Columbia State computer science students, Jarod Teague and James Washington, completed the 10-week pilot course that started on June 4, and recently gave a presentation about their experiences.

“The capstone program helped us see ‘the big picture’ of the technology market,” Teague said. “We were able to work behind the scenes at a major public company and gained invaluable experience as active participants in the team’s daily operations.”

“The program was extremely beneficial,” Washington said. “I wouldn’t have been able to learn as much or receive the type of workplace mentorship, had I went anywhere else. I would definitely recommend this capstone program to anyone who is interested in pursuing a career in the I.T./engineering field.”

Deepa Janakiraman, Columbia State program director and assistant professor of computer information systems, has been involved with the program since its inception in December 2017.

“One of my main objectives as computer information systems program director is to create work-based learning opportunities for our students,” Janakiraman said. “Tractor Supply has been an outstanding industry partner and helped to bring this mission to life. The students were able to take what they have learned in the classroom one step further through the program.”

Tractor Supply Company was instrumental in the course development and oversaw day-to-day work experience with the students.

“Tractor Supply’s willingness and dedication to work with our students was truly appreciated,” Janakiraman noted. “The feedback from their team was very helpful and the time spent with Tractor Supply mentors was priceless.” 

The 10-week summer capstone course was a pilot for what the College hopes to become a larger program in the future.

About Tractor Supply Company

Tractor Supply Company (NASDAQ: TSCO) is in its 80th year of operation and, since being founded in 1938, has grown to become the largest rural lifestyle retail chain in the United States. With more than 28,000 team members, over 1,725 stores in 49 states and an e-commerce website, Tractor Supply is passionate about serving its unique niche, as a one-stop shop for recreational farmers, ranchers and all those who enjoy living the rural lifestyle. Tractor Supply offers an extensive mix of products necessary to care for home, land, pets and animals with a focus on product localization, exclusive brands and legendary customer service that addresses the needs of the Out Here lifestyle. The Company leverages its physical store assets with digital capabilities to offer customers the convenience of purchasing products they need anytime, anywhere and any way they choose at the everyday prices they deserve. At June 30, 2018, the Company operated 1,725 Tractor Supply stores in 49 states and an e-commerce website at www.tractorsupply.com.

Tractor Supply Company also owns and operates Petsense, a small-box pet specialty supply retailer focused on meeting the needs of pet owners, primarily in small and mid-size communities, and offering a variety of pet products and services. At June 30, 2018, the Company operated 174 Petsense stores in 27 states. For more information on Petsense, visit www.petsense.com.

TSC and Columbia State
Photo Caption: (Pictured, left to right)
Dr. Janet F. Smith, Columbia State president; James Washington, Columbia State student; Jarod Teague, Columbia State student; Adam Gains, Tractor Supply Company enterprise architect; Glenn Allison, Tractor Supply Company vice president of enterprise architecture; Deepa Janakiraman, Columbia State program director and assistant professor of computer information systems; Dr. Mary Lou D’Allegro, Columbia State vice president for academic affairs; and Andrew Wright, interim dean of the Science, Technology and Mathematics Division and assistant professor of mathematics.

Jarod Teague
Photo Caption:
Jarod Teague

Jarod with TSC
Photo Caption: 
Jarod Teague

James Washington
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James Washington

James Washington with TSC Equipment
Photo Caption: 
James Washington

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