Four Colby students—all computer science majors—have landed coveted summer internships with CGI, the international company that acquired Collaborative Consulting and is making Waterville its Maine hub.

Sophomores Rob Durst, Austin Nantkes, Christopher Marcello, and Robbie DeAngelo (left to right)

Rob Durst ’19, Robbie DeAngelo ’19, Christopher Marcello ’19, and Austin Nantkes ’19 worked at CGI during Jan Plan. In addition to shadowing CGI employees and learning more about the company’s mission, the four were given a challenge: form teams of two and create a solution to a common problem using “blockchain” technology, a type of digital ledger most famously used in the digital currency Bitcoin. The best proposal, CGI said, would earn the creator a paid summer internship at the Waterville center.

Each team attacked the problem of efficiently requesting and distributing copies of their college transcripts. In the teams’ solutions, a seamless online process would expedite the process without sacrificing privacy or verification. “After a few hours of research I immediately became hooked,” Durst said. “I found myself sucked in, getting lost on long learning tangents in an attempt to learn this revolutionary technology that promised to disrupt nearly every industry. By the time the final pitch came around, I felt well versed in blockchain and wanted more than ever the opportunity to work with the new tech this summer.”

The students’ work was so thorough and well done that CGI decided to award the full-time paid internships to all four.

“CGI is one of the world’s leading technology companies with offices and clients around the globe. Because of CGI’s major presence in Waterville, Colby students have an opportunity to work on advanced technologies in our own backyard,” said Brian Clark, vice president of planning. “With our focus on computational initiatives over the next several years, I expect this new partnership with CGI to grow and provide even more of our students with incredible experiences,” he said.