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‘I Am the ROI’: Jessica Barry | News – Omaha, Nebraska

Omaha, Nebraska 2021-09-20 02:42:26 –

Jessica Barry wants to help people understand that being a tech expert isn’t just about programming and knowing very technical things. It’s an area where everyone can solve problems and take risks, regardless of background.

Barry is a software integration and testing manager for the Konagra brand in downtown Omaha. She has run an internship program in the IT department for the past four years, which has been adopted locally and nationwide.

“Most important to me and why I was involved in this [internship program] I mean I didn’t start technology, “Barry said. “My background was marketing and management.”

Her undergraduate education focused on entrepreneurship, not necessarily to own her own business, but to have an entrepreneurial spirit while working for a large company.

“My background helped me move to a technical role because I was able to apply problem-solving skills to technical problems, keeping in mind how I was servicing my business. “Barry said.

But in her more technical role, she quickly got out of her element. As a result, she returned to the University of Nebraska Omaha (UNO) to pursue two master’s degree programs: a Master of Business Administration and a Master of Science in Information Systems Management. (MBA / MIS) Program Through UNO’s Faculty of Business Administration and Faculty of Information Science and Technology.

“The program I chose made it possible for me to maintain that business lens while feeling like I had a really solid tech foundation,” Barry said.

Now she’s helping others find her place in technology. Especially those who do not have a technical background. In addition to leading an internship program in the Konagra brand IT department, she participates in the Nebraska Tech Collaboration of the P-12 Commission, which aims to attract and retain technology work and talent in Nebraska. ..

Participating in the Technology Panel allowed her to talk to women and girls about why it’s so important to be involved in technology. She talks about a major issue in the field of technology. For example, how many of your colleagues feel in an industry that doesn’t look like you.

“Diversity isn’t just about race. It’s not just about gender. It’s about background diversity,” she said. “When I started taking on leadership roles in my company, it was very important to be able to take advantage of that influence to hire people who are good for technology but may not come from a traditional background. Was important to. “

She is also helping to shape educational needs for the state’s future workforce. Barry leads the Konagra Educator Internship Program, which recruits educators from local schools and upgrades them so that they can return their newly discovered skills and business skills to classrooms from kindergarten to high school. She also meets with the Nebraska Board of Education and school leaders from kindergarten to high school to discuss that curriculum changes may help better meet future community and state workforce needs. I am a member of the team.

“The Mavericks Spirit has enabled us to develop a passion for technology as well as a passion for Omaha as a community,” she said. “Much of what I do is because I want to make Omaha a better place. I want to make it a place where people feel calm and the tech community that supports them feels prosperous.”

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