We love hearing from our alums! We asked ITS graduate Sami DeVille Messerle some questions about her time at Ohio University, her current job, and of course, the field of ITS at Ohio U
Hometown: New Philadelphia, OH – now New Orleans, LA
When did you graduate from Ohio University’s McClure School of ITS? Fall 2009
Degree(s) held: B.S. Communication – ITS
Current job? Technical Operations Manager for Mignon Faget, Ltd, a jewelry design house in New Orleans, LA with a small chain of brick and mortar stores and online web store. I am a one person shop, and oversee helpdesk, network administration, database administration, web server management and web design, vendor management, and almost literally anything that plugs into a wall. I love working for a SMB because I get to really flex my skills and pursue kind of any part of the IT world that interests me, from graphic design to PCI compliance.
What skills did you learn in your undergraduate program that you use in your current job? Basic networking and administration concepts, encryption and security best practices, how to source tools and white papers to stay up on the latest technologies, and overall what a career in IT can really mean – it doesn’t have to be a help desk or highly structured office job. The range afforded to me in my current career has a lot to do with the wide variety of information technology concepts and business administration skills that I was exposed to during my time in the ITS program.
Best ITS class taken during undergrad? This is a difficult question. I got a lot out of Phil Campbell and John Hoag’s classes while I was there, as far as a baseline in IT knowledge goes. Phyllis Bernt’s IT Compliance class is still immediately helpful to me when navigating legal stuff in my current job. Andy Snow’s project management class also gave me the tools and confidence to tackle large scale IT projects, one of which I am undertaking right now.
Advice to current undergraduate ITS students? Take advantage of the networking, clubs and the programs available for certifications now. I always disregarded advice like this while I was a student, but if I could have a do-over for the extracurricular part of my college education I would do it.
What would you say to potential students looking at the McClure School of Information and Telecommunications? I would say go for it – the program vastly expanded my skill set and the way that I learn new skills and made me immediately hire-able, which is not always the norm when choosing a major.
Favorite thing about Ohio University/Athens? I miss the food and drinks! Hanging out at Jackie O’s, Cheese Stix and the Roadside at Lucky’s, Thai wings with blue cheese from Red Brick, fried chicken from Miller’s…these are the things I daydream about when I’m missing Athens.