Job title: District IT Tech
Education experience: Faribault High School 2012-15, South Central College 2015-16, Mankato State University 2017-19. Bachelor’s degree in computer information technology
Career: I worked at Jennie-O Turkey Store as a quality assurance technician from June 2016 to Dec. 2019, where I helped provide technical support and training in the areas of USDA regulation compliance, process control program, problem analysis investigation, product performance reporting, good manufacturing practices and food safety principles.
What are some of your hobbies and interests? I am a big fan of soccer. I enjoy playing and watching soccer games in general. Also, I enjoy spending time with my family, friends, and helping my local community. Data analytics is a field that I am very interested in. I love working with data and cleaning it for fun.
What's something interesting about you that not a lot of people know? I love helping people. Early in 2020 during the pandemic, I was in Ethiopia and I have witnessed tons of people going through hardships caused by devastating drought out and the COVID-19 pandemic. Those people were struggling to get basic life necessities like food and water. When I got back to the states, I decided to do a charity fundraiser to help less fortunate families in certain regions in Ethiopia. I have talked to my family, cousins, friends, and anyone in my circle who would like to donate to needy families. We raised about $7,000 and were able to provide more than 100 families with food for a month.
Why did you decide to pursue a career in technology? I must say that technology wasn’t exactly on my radar when I started college. In fact, I wanted to be some type of doctor, but I lost interest in that. Then, in my first year at Minnesota State University, Mankato, I started looking for other career choices. That was when technology hit me. I did very extensive research about information technology, attended technology meetings at the university, and met with professional IT experts. I found out that computer technology is a very lucrative career. It has a very strong impact on the world and there are a lot of opportunities open. This has attracted me to pursue a degree in information technology.
I remember my first class in the IT program- it was a python coding class and I just fell in love with it and became very passionate about technology and what it has to offer. After that, I evolved by learning computer systems and coding languages. Today, I am very fortunate to say that I found my passion and I made the best decision pursuing a bachelor's degree in the IT industry.
How did Faribault schools help prepare you for your career? Faribault High School prepared me tremendously throughout my career. It taught me the basic fundamentals to be a successful student, doing my assignments on time, getting knowledge, and good grades. When I graduated I was college-ready, although there are a few things I could have done differently if I knew what I know today.
I started FHS in 2012 as an English Language Learner student with no American background education. It was tough and I had struggled the first two years adapting to the environment, culture, and language, but with the help and support of my ELL, math, and social study teachers I was able to excel in high school academically and that helped me become a successful student in college. In my senior year, I spent a lot of time in the career center with Marry who helped me apply for college applications, financial aid, and scholarships.
I cannot put words the amount of help I received from FHS staff, especially my ELL teacher Kathy Sirek, My social study teacher Mr. Meier and all my math teachers.
Without them I wouldn’t be able to be where I am today. I am very grateful for all the things they have taught me.
What do you enjoy most about working at a tech specialist? I really enjoy helping the staff, parents, and students, finding the right technical solution to solve their issue, and seeing them happy and smile.
What do you enjoy about being part of Faribault Public Schools? I enjoy knowing that I am part of an organization that is dedicated to making a big difference in the lives of their students and their community. I am honored to give back and be part of this organization. There is no better feeling than knowing that I am making a difference in my district and putting a smile on the staff, students, and parents' faces.