CIS Major Nichola

Meet Nicholas Drakely

Computer Information Science (CIS), 2021

For more than a year, Nicholas spent countless hours working on a new website for SEPCHE as part of a paid internship. The beautiful new site launched in March 2021. 


Real-world, hands-on learning plays an integral role in the GMercyU experience. For Nicholas, a recent CIS graduate with a concentration in Web Design & Multimedia, it came in the form of an exciting paid internship with SEPCHE (Southeastern Pennsylvania Consortium for Higher Education). 

In January 2020, Nicholas and his CIS classmate Eric Shaheen ’21 were hired by SEPCHE to redesign and relaunch their website, Cindy Casey, Program Coordinator of the CIS program, arranged the internship for them.

When they started the project, Eric worked with Professor Casey on the web design, while Nicholas built and designed a new searchable database that features all SEPCHE schools’ course information. The database would enable students at SEPCHE schools to search for classes at other SEPCHE schools that may not be offered at their home school. Nicholas also did some “front-end work” (work that’s visible to web visitors) on the site.

Building the Database

Nicholas built the search course database using a combination of HTML, CSS, JavaScript, MySQL, PHP, and Python languages. “I was able to put the database together based on doing a good deal of research, but one CIS course that stands out for me is Algorithms & Data Structures,” he said, explaining that the course gave him the foundation he needed for the project. 

In the course, students learn the concept of programming as a method of analyzing, stating, and solving problems on a computer. 

Launching the Site

This year, Nicholas took over the project with Professor Casey, and they spent many weekends working on the website. Nicholas estimated that he logged anywhere from 120-170 hours seeing it to fruition. 

The beautiful new site launched in March 2021. Nicholas looks forward to hearing web traffic stats from SEPCHE. 

Another CIS Project: Mentoring for Girls Who Code 

In addition to his coursework and internship project, Nicholas also served as student mentor in GMercyU’s Girl Who Code program for high school students. 

In that role, Nicholas and Professor Casey helped explain the fundamentals of programming to the students. They assigned them fun coding projects to work on and had discussions related to the field of computer science.

“I think the best part about it was being able to share the programming knowledge I have with others,” said Nicholas. 

With graduation just behind him, Nicholas will begin searching for jobs related to programming, web or software development, such as a front-end or back-end developer position. With a great sample of work to show future employers, we can’t wait to hear where he winds up.

* In summer 2021, Nicholas was hired by GMercyU as a Junior Programmer Analyst in the IT department.