When I was fresh out of college, I wasn’t sure if my Psychology degree was going to lead me down the right path and help me stumble upon my dream job. My first few years in the workforce taught me a lot and I had grown accustomed to working with majority women with similar educational backgrounds as myself. I eventually hit a point where I felt like my career was not enough to satisfy me and there was more I could accomplish in life.
As a first generation female Asian American, I lacked the self-confidence to pursue a career in STEM. When I finally made the leap to change careers, I often heard from other women how courageous I was. Now when I look back, I think how funny that statement sounded that I had to muster up the courage to pursue a career I had wanted for myself for quite some time. I remember thinking how odd it was to go to a polytechnic university that had a 2:1 male to female ratio because of the number of male engineering students that attended and how normal it was to visit my women friends at their tech companies and see majority men.
When I first interviewed with XYPRO, I recall the surmounting fear I had that this would be another company that only saw a woman with not as much technical experience compared to the average man working there. It was refreshing to hear them ask about my other skills besides the technical ones and saw value in my communication skills and leadership style. I was blown away from meeting Office Manager, Kristie Rusk, during my interview and learned that she had been working as a Woman in Tech for over 30 years! When I joined their team, it was surprising to see a number of women in management positions that were more commonly seen acquired by men. Our leading ladies consist of Lisa Partridge running the show as our CEO and Ellen Gershev leading the engineering team as Executive Director. Snigdha Yedla is our Project Manager that makes sure our teams are within scope and meeting their release dates. There’s also Kassandra Guy as the Director of Software Development and Carol Gorst as Business Development Manager that are the eyes and ears of our engineering team. Even our two QA Analyst Team Leads, Olga Gorbachik and Santhoshi Sunkam are forces to be reckoned with their great attention to detail. The women in our Accounting Department and Administration are amazing with how they keep everything running. I was always in awe of how our Administrative Assistant, Kristen Frost, stayed on top of celebrating our birthdays and remembered significant days like National Chocolate Day. XYPRO also recently hired Melodie Bond-Hillman as Human Resources Manager who worked wonders in a matter of days. We definitely cannot forget the amazing women who code and test our software and the amazing, detail-oriented interns whose creativity contribute so much to the company.
As today is International Women’s Day, I think about how proud I am to be working here at XYPRO as a Woman in Tech along-side a group of super women who have nothing but love and support for one another. I admire the diverse backgrounds we come from and the array of skills we possess. We all have unique journeys that brought us together at XYPRO whether we started as scientists, educators, or someone looking for a fresh start. In the end, I think our diversity has contributed much to the great company culture.
Special Projects Manager