SWIFT-U was founded by Dr Denise Haskins to support and retain the diverse women in technology fields. Dr. Haskins shares her expertise to progress STEM-related women on overcoming career track showstoppers that derail women. Through coaching, public speaking, and one-on-one tech talk sessions geared toward either groups or individuals.
My Tech Journey
Who am I?
Infection after foot surgery in 10th grade left me crawling on the floor and not able to walk. I missed four months from school and was reverted to home teaching services. My geometry instructor and 4th-grade math teacher led to my love of math and science. A collegiate advisor caused me to shift in a haste from pursuing an engineering degree to Broadcast Communications major. A wonderful professor, Dr. Lenora Brogdon exposed me to the different facets of the field. I became the first African American female to host my own radio show on campus and wrote several award-winning commercials as well as interned at Howard University Television Station (WHUT-TV) as Assistant to the Executive Producer, thus began my revamp path.
I graduated from college with a Bachelor in Communications and a minor in Business Management but did not desire to start my career in a small, country town market. After college, I transitioned to an administrative position and then into technology as a help desk support within a computer center for a Washington DC Beltway bandit company. This became the catalyst to my academic and career interest in computers and information systems. It was during this tenure that I pursued a Master’s degree through a bridge program in Management Information Systems (MIS) while working full-time.
In pursuit of excellence in the field of Information Systems and Systems Engineering, there is no substitute for a strong educational background coupled with extensive work experience. It is for this reason that I pursued my doctoral program. This afforded me an opportunity to broaden my knowledge, further my career, and enhance my research and teaching skills. While pursuing my doctoral studies, I took a sabbatical from my job when I selected as a Minority Faculty Fellow and computer science instructor while still holding down a full-time position. It was always my desire to continue to teach and train others in this wonderful field of new discoveries constantly unfolding for women in engineering.
Still feeling energized, I went on to complete my doctorate next in Information Management after having to write my dissertation twice because my advisor never read my initial submission. Next, I taught myself how to craft a successful dissertation step-by-step which required an additional year of intense work. Then as I prepared to flip my tassel, more horrific news beset me as I was required to process out. This setback led me to become an expert in writing a dissertation and the second version was clearly a better publication followed by my first royalty checks.
Now I am a thriving Certified Systems Engineering Professional, Raytheon Star Awardee, and Woman of Color – Technology All-Star recipient.
I am starting this blog to coach women through the challenges of being in a technical field and impart some of the adjustment strategies required for women as an underrepresented group.
Smart Women in Future Tech (SWIFT-U) is your one-stop shop for answers to help you persist on your journey. Sharing my expertise, experiences, and extensive educational background, I am here to lead and coach women through the challenging, sometimes unfair, and often treacherous pathway of STEM careers.
I am your STEM concierge of information and systems to help women in tech gain the Confidence and skills to navigate their unique career to a new elevation path.