Women in Tech: Featuring Kym Bridgers, Northern Virginia Community College

Her journey into tech

I have been working in technology for 19 years, mostly in private industry, and in higher education for a year and a half. My first technology job was in sales—managing a CRM solution program for one of the world's largest hotel franchises. The sales team decided to purchase a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system and later realized that we needed a Database Administrator to maintain it. At the time I was the "go to" person for troubleshooting simple computer issues, so my boss at the time decided I would be the best person to oversee the CRM. Over the years we changed CRMs and I eventually started working directly with IT on a daily basis, becoming the product owner, trainer, and software support manager.

I didn't start off interested in technology, I wanted to be in management. I began to map out a new career path that included both technology and management. Working alongside programmers and developers on various phases of multi-million dollar projects pushed me to get my Masters of Business Management in Projects Management and take on a second Masters of Science in Information Systems.

On the future of auxiliary enterprise technology

I think technology will continue to give colleges more creative ways and approaches to help educate students. I also believe that the card as it currently exists will be less prevalent in the future with mobile devices and biometrics replacing some of the present cards. Cloud computing will play a much larger role in years to come with the services offered and the production of cards. Door access will continue to evolve, keeping our students, faculty, and staff safe is always at the forefront and finding better ways to do it with technology is and will continue to be key.

Advice to women in higher education technology

Maintain a good work life balance. This field can be overwhelming and intense, so it's important to have that balance. And continue to educate yourself and make sure you find a way to keep up with the evolving technology in college-wide systems so you offer the best services and practices in the industry.

To hear more about Kym, check out our webinar with a panel including Northern Virginia Community College, Texas State Technical College and Onondaga Community College: Card Technologies and the Student Experience at Community and Technical Colleges.