Vermillion was chosen by Eagle Creek because of its proximity to the University of South Dakota, with which the company started a partnership recently to launch the Information Technology Consultant Academy. This is a program designed to give eligible students with a scholarship and a career track to employment as an Information Technology consultant.
The company is working with the school to create a curriculum and hopes that students will apply at the company upon graduation. Tyler Pearson, a company spokesman, said that the program will not prepare students for work just at Eagle Creek.
The company noted that graduates of the program should be able to earn starting salaries ranging from $40,000 to $45,000. Students who earn a master’s degree could earn starting salaries of $50,000 to $60,000.
Eagle Creek is planning to add another 800 jobs at new technology centers across South Dakota outside of the 200 at Vermillion.
“Foreign, or offshore, IT solutions are not adequately filling the needs of the U.S. market,” Eagle Creek President Ken Behrendt said in a statement. “By better educating our workforce, Eagle Creek Software Services can create a more sustainable and scalable IT solution while growing jobs in America.”
The company only has a payroll of 300 employees right now, so adding 1,000 employees will be a huge step for Eagle Creek. The company’s headquarters is in Eden Prairie, where there are 40 employees working, the majority of them executives. Pearson said that the company’s relationship with the state began years ago when it opened a facility in Pierre.
“This is a great day for South Dakota and the resurgent technology business in America,” South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard said in a statement. “With a $10 million investment in the Vermillion community and new career path for University of South Dakota students, we are on track to create meaningful jobs that will benefit the community and make South Dakota more globally competitive in the information technology sector.”
The clients of Eagle Creek were not disclosed by Pearson, but he did mention that they are in the insurance and health care industries. He also said that the majority of them are Fortune 1500 companies.Eagle Creek Adding 1,000 Jobs in South Dakota by Andrew Ostler