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Research and Innovation

A History of NC State’s 30-Year Collaboration With IBM

An NC State coffee mug and an IBM coffee mug on a shelf.

For three decades, IBM and NC State have worked together across research, education and advanced technology development. The collaboration has yielded breakthroughs in cloud computing, advanced analytics, cybersecurity, renewable energy, advanced networking and healthcare IT.

In 2016, IBM opened its Education Innovation Center on Centennial Campus, a collaboration space for NC State students and faculty and IBM employees to uncover solutions.

For more than a decade, NC State has been a top provider of new graduates to IBM (often the number one and number two supplier).

Since 1984, IBM support to NC State has totaled more than $30 million, including sponsored research, student and faculty fellowships, equipment donations and more.

    Over the years, IBM has been a member of several of NC State’s interdisciplinary research centers:

  • Center for Innovation Management Studies
  • Precision Engineering Consortium
  • Electronic Power Research Center
  • Center for Advanced Computing and Communication
  • Integrated Manufacturing Systems Engineering Institute

Milestones

  • Early 1990s
    Some of the first advanced networking and network-based visualization and multimedia experiments, over ATM and Ethernet, were done at NC State in collaboration with IBM scientists and researchers.

  • 1990s
    Some of the first long-range multimedia and 3D video over Internet 2 was done through NC State’s Multimedia Laboratory, established with an IBM donation. This led to extensive research and open-source products in the domain of network-based education.

  • Early 2000s
    NC State and IBM developed the first academic production-level cloud technology and implementation — the NC State Virtual Computing Laboratory (VCL). VCL has been offering production-level services at NC State since 2004. The cloud technology is now an open-source product with worldwide acceptance.

  • 2000s-Present
    The most prominent collaborations with IBM include breakthroughs in cloud computing, advanced analytics, cybersecurity, renewable energy, advanced networking and healthcare IT.

  • 2011
    Current IBM President and CEO Ginni Rometty, who was at the time senior vice president at IBM, visits NC State and speaks to students as part of the company’s 100th anniversary celebration.

  • 2016
    IBM Education Innovation Center opens, a collaboration space on Centennial Campus for NC State students and faculty and IBM employees to solve complex challenges.

  • 2018
    IBM announces that NC State will be the first university-based IBM Quantum Computing Hub in North America.

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