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High-tech class is big step for area

On the surface, it may not sound even remotely exciting: a four-day seminar on TCP/IP Internetworking and Basic Cisco Router Configuration.

But the training class, scheduled this month in Ashland, is being hailed by organizers as a significant step forward for Southern Oregon's high-tech industry.

That's because it's the type of technical training that previously required a trip to San Francisco, Portland or Seattle, according to Bob Armen of Project A, an Ashland software company that is hosting the class.

This is a little herald of growth for everyone working locally in computer sciences and infrastructure, he says. You don't have to leave the valley or come from outside the valley to get the network to work.

TCP/IP stands for Transfer Control Protocol/Internet Protocol and refers to the computer commands that direct data. Routers are the computers that direct data traffic within a network. Cisco Systems is a leading router manufacturer.

Technical training offered locally has long been identified as a need for Southern Oregon's technology industry. Industry leaders say it's needed for both new employees and as continuing education for existing workers.

Even at $1,000, the four days of seven-hour sessions are a bargain, Armen says, adding that similar classes in Portland or the Bay area often cost $2,000 or more.

This is technical stuff,?? Armen says, adding that the class includes both theory and hands-on training.

The course is being taught by Ashland's Priscilla Oppenheimer, a former Cisco Systems engineer and trainer who has written a book that Cisco published on designing and setting up complex computer networks.

The seminar is Tuesday through Friday at Project A, 340 A St. in Ashland. There are still a few openings. For information, call Armen at 488-1702.