A woman in tech: Senior support specialist reflects on work at Fisher, new innovation center

By Kelsey Braun ’22, Editor in Chief

By Kelsey Braun ’22, Editor in Chief

Robin Schmid, Senior Training Support Specialist at St. John Fisher College, began working in the technology field over a decade ago as a volunteer at her children’s elementary school. When the school district couldn’t pay people to run computer labs, they turned to volunteer support to get students engaged.

As a volunteer, Schmid began a reading program based on computer software for the students.  She learned the ins and outs of computer software through training provided by the school district and eventually got hired and worked there for 12 years. After her children graduated, Schmid decided to look into working for higher education.

With at least 12 years of technology experience and training, Schmid began working in the Support Services team at St. John Fisher College. A typical day for Schmid includes lots of email messages, holding training sessions and offering new faculty and staff a technology overview or a “onboarding training session.”

“The best part of the day is working with a wide variety of people over campus and my co-workers,” Schmid said. “I get to work with a lot of different people, at times it can be fun and rewarding.”

Like any other field that is made up of few women, there are still struggles that come with the industry. “There are not a lot of women predominantly in the field. There are more than I think there used to be, but I still think there’s a great divide.” said Schmid. “Sometimes you’re not looked upon as much of an asset to the organization.”

After working in the Office of Information Technology for 14 years, Schmid now works in the new DePeters Family Center for Innovation and Teaching Excellence where she provides training and support for a wide variety of applications that the college uses on an everyday basis. Whether it be in the classroom, administrative or zoom computer help, Schmid is on the job. “That’s my niche, it’s just where I fit,” she said.

Schmid encourages students interested in pursuing a career in the technology field to go for it. “I think it’s a good field for women. If you have the ability and you like computers, it is a good field to go in. There’s a lot of variety.”

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