Emmeca Strother on her IT journey as a STAR

Thought leaders share ideas with WorkingNation Overheard at JFF Horizons 2023

Her work history began at a pizza restaurant, then retail at a mobile phone store, and then a move to Apple as a salesperson and an Apple genius, explains Emmeca Strother, IT systems administrator, Opportunity@Work.

WorkingNation sat down with Strother at JFF Horizons in New Orleans.

Now in her current job in IT systems, she explains how she developed her skills. “Being open, being clear on the things that I wanted to work on, leaning into the people next to me, asking them for advice, seeking feedback, and being open to learning. I have a few certifications that have allowed the doors to be open for me,” says Strother.

She is a STAR – a person who has been skilled through alternative routes – an acronym for people without college degrees. At one point, she was sleeping in her car but continued to persevere and continued to learn.

About STARs, Strother says, “I think that sometimes people assume that because someone has a degree that you can instantly trust them to be able to do the job. But it’s so important that you focus on the person in front of you to be able to understand how you can trust this person. Will this person show up? A degree won’t tell you that.”

Learn more about Opportunity@Work.

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