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Library teaches real-world skills to student employees

Ryeland Ellison, computer science major, '25
Ryeland Ellison, computer science major, ’25

Ryeland Ellison graduated from Meridian Medical High School in 2021. The skills he learned got him hired by Fred Meyer, where he continues to work part-time as a pharmacy technician. Ryeland’s personal connections to Boise State influenced his decision to enroll. He had a friend here and his mom is an alum.

Albertsons Library hired Ryeland to work part-time in access services’ computer lab. There are dozens of benefits to working in the library as an undergraduate. Flexible hours are key, as well as being part of a collaborative, creative environment that supports making connections across campus; it also encourages peer-to-peer learning. Student employees learn critical communication skills, both in customer service and with technology. Work-study students are also eligible for a scholarship through the library.

After just a couple of months, Ryeland was hired away by Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories (SEL). He dropped off a resume at the company’s booth during Boise State’s Career Service’s fall job fair. SEL (headquartered in Pullman, WA) called a couple of weeks later to offer him a paid internship as a software engineer. Ryeland is majoring in computer science and mentioned that SEL hires about 70% of their interns after college graduation.

“The work is really exciting,” claims Ryeland. As an intern he gets to help develop firmware for a power systems meter they are building. He’s attending college “because he knows he needs a good foundation.” He likes the Boise community, but “may end up living somewhere else because of the cost of living.”

Ryeland is a sophomore at Boise State. He’s already looking forward to working full-time after graduation. His eyes light up when he shares, “I want to make some decent money in order to chase my passion and start my own company developing my own software.”