WOMEN IN TECHNOLOGY

It is estimated that out of the 7 million people employed globally in the ICT sector, only 30% are women. We often make reference to the ‘IT guy’ and without second thought assume that an engineer is male. Like many other industries the technology field has been stereotyped as ‘man’s work’. Little exposure is given to the female pioneers blazing the trails in careers not frequented by their gender. Even less exposure or mention is made of women in the Caribbean and locally in Antigua. APUA is proud to be an equal opportunity employer and an indigenous telecommunications company which is able to offer a plethora of jobs in the ICT field.  We are pleased to introduce you to some of APUA Telecoms’ female trail blazers.

 

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JENISE PILGRIM — SUPERVISOR, CENTRAL OFFICE

DUTIES:

– Provisioning of voice and data services.

– Line checks

– Assignment of duties to Central Office staff/Coordinating activities with Outside Plant personnel

– Maintenance of service order records.

– Identifying network failures.

WHAT INFLUENCED YOU TO CHOOSE THIS CAREER?

I began employment with the Authority some twenty-nine years ago as a clerical worker and could not have envisaged, at that time that my career would have taken me into one of the most technologically oriented areas within our business unit.  After working in fault reporting and then data entry for a couple of years, I decided that the time had come to move onto more challenging opportunities within my section.  It was at this point that I became more interested in the operation of our Telephone Network and the ever-changing technology that was driving our business.  I applied for a transfer and was given the opportunity to work as a technician in our Central Office section.  It was at first a bit intimidating as I was virtually the only female that had ever been assigned to this section.  It was what I wanted and was determined to make my mark in a field largely dominated by men thus far.

HOW HAS APUA HELPED TO FURTHER DEVELOP YOUR SKILLS?

I have matured considerably since those early days and presently have a very demanding workload which causes me to engage my time management skills. As the Central Office Supervisor I have had to learn how to manage a small group of technicians that are expected to satisfy the day to day demands of both our INET and Installation & Repair departments.

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST ACCOMPLISHMENT IN THE TELECOMS BUSINESS UNIT?  

The Authority has enabled my personal development through training and by entrusting me to work with cutting edge equipment. This has allowed me to be a part of a highly talented and technologically savvy group of individuals. I would like to acknowledge the role of my supervisors both past and present for their confidence in my ability and for pointing me in the direction that has allowed me to evolve into the individual that I am today.

A job is very often what you make of it. My achievements to date were as a result of hard work and perseverance. It is of great importance that I now find myself in a career that offers personal fulfilment at the end of each work day and to know that I have been allowed to participate in a meaningful way toward the development of our business unit. We are truly going through a technological revolution in the Telecoms industry and I am privileged to be making my contribution one day at a time.

 

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JOYCE BALTIMORE-WHYTE — COMPUTER PROGRAMMER

DUTIES:

– Providing network connectivity support for APUA’s Data network.

– Assisting in installing and configuring system hardware and software.

– Establishing and maintaining user accounts, profiles, file sharing and access privileges for the local area network (LAN).

– Troubleshooting network problems for both Local Area Network (LAN) and Wide Area Network (WAN).

– Assisting in the establishment of agreements that governs the level of service provided by APUA to our business customers.

– Assisting in the installation of APUA’s Wi-Fi product.

– Provisioning and troubleshooting services for APUA’s Fiber to the Home (FTTH) offer.

WHAT INFLUENCED YOU TO CHOOSE THIS CAREER?

I was drawn to this career field as a freshman in high school when we were asked to write our first computer program for a class assignment. I became interested in the field from then and decided that this would be the area of study I’d pursue.

HOW HAS APUA HELPED TO FURTHER DEVELOP YOUR SKILLS?

I have seen the steady progression of my skills over the years as I am tasked with the varied projects that challenge me to extend beyond the limits of my degree to learn new disciplines as those mentioned above.

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST ACCOMPLISHMENT IN THE TELECOMS BUSINESS UNIT?  

I cannot yet say what my greatest accomplishment has been. However, I do believe that I have accomplished much in providing, to the best of my ability, service to our customers and value to the organization.

 

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CAROLYN WEBSON — TELEPHONE TECHNICIAN

DUTIES:

– Responding to telephone faults.

– Assisting with installation and repair dispatch.

WHAT INFLUENCED YOU TO CHOOSE THIS CAREER?

As a young girl growing up I realized that I am a hands on learner. I enjoyed joining in challenging and interesting project with my brothers.  This family bonding time influenced me to choose my career.

HOW HAS APUA HELPED TO FURTHER DEVELOP YOUR SKILLS?

APUA has helped me to develop my skills by giving me the opportunity to work in my field of choice. Every day I get to put my knowledge and skills into practice.

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST ACCOMPLISHMENT IN THE TELECOMS BUSINESS UNIT?  

What has been your biggest accomplishment in the Telecoms Business Unit?

For me my biggest accomplishment was not the degree obtained in a class room or online. It is the respect of all my fellow
co-workers both past, present, young and old, who appreciate the work that I am doing.

 

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KANDICE WESTE — SYSTEM SUPPORT ANALYST / PRODUCT OFFICER – INTERNET

DUTIES:

– Management of the telecoms billing system.

– Troubleshooting software issues with employee users.

– Software training.

WHAT INFLUENCED YOU TO CHOOSE THIS CAREER?

This may sound cliché but my mother influenced my career choice. She is a network engineer and her love for information technology made me want to enter this field.

HOW HAS APUA HELPED TO FURTHER DEVELOP YOUR SKILLS?

APUA has provided an abundance of job training which has helped to further develop my skills and exposure to industry software.

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST ACCOMPLISHMENT IN THE TELECOMS BUSINESS UNIT?  

Being responsible for the billing system has allowed me to train and ensure that all staff members interacting with the system are properly equipped.  I take great pride in the fact that APUA has entrusted me with this very important role.

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