August 19, 2022 | ,

Philly Tech Story: Tymere Richardson, Information Technology Engineer at Accolade

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This interview is part of the City of Philadelphia’s Most Diverse Tech Hub initiative. Campus Philly is featuring the “Philly stories” of Black and Brown tech founders, entrepreneurs, and young professionals who are making an impact in the region, demonstrating why the Philadelphia region IS the most diverse tech hub.

Tymere Richardson, professionally known as Ty, is an Information Technology Engineer and college student. Born and raised in Norristown, PA, Ty began his Information Technology career in 2021 at Allied Universal. Tymere currently resides in Plymouth Meeting, PA and is saving to relocate to Miami, FL.

Tell us about your “Philly story” – what’s your connection to the region, and what do you love most about being a young professional in the Philly area?

My Philly story began in Norristown, PA. I always loved the Philly area because I love seeing the skyscrapers in Center City, as well as the great food in the area. I love being a young professional that can now give back to the area that I came from. My goal is to inspire others to pursue their dreams. I am living proof that you can do anything you put your mind to. Philly has many opportunities, but it is up to us to find them.

Did you always know you wanted to pursue a career in tech? When did it “click” that a career in information technology was for you?

I never envisioned that one day I would be working in tech, but I’m so happy I pursued my dreams and chased it. I worked in a few different fields—car washes, driving jobs, and working in a warehouse.

One day as I went for a walk, I thought about going back to college, but I couldn’t decide on a major to pursue. Eventually, I decided to pursue Information Technology which turned out to be an excellent idea.

I always felt comfortable with computers and anytime there was a computer issue at work I would be the person to fix the issue. While on the phone with my girlfriend one day she said, “You should work for their help-desk, you’re always fixing their computers anytime they break.”

It was that moment when I realized, maybe I could do this. I began applying for Information Technology, also known as I.T. No one ever gave me a call, or even wanted an interview. This led me to figure out how to make the odds in my favor. I spiced up my resume and that helped me land my first I.T. help desk position at Allied Universal on April 2021. After working at Allied Universal for a few months I landed a position at Accolade as a Information Technology Engineer on October 2021.

 

What is a typical day like for you as an Information Technology Engineer at Accolade?

A typical day at work can be challenging. I.T. is a fast-paced environment and things constantly change. At the beginning of the week, I open our ticketing system and look at the morning issues then try to resolve them. These issues consist of users not being able to access their email, laptop crashes, VPNs not working, or a user who wants access to an application.

Each situation is different and requires time and effort. My team has a patch meeting every week in which we look for software programs that have flaws and need updates. Each day is different in the I.T. world, but I learn something new every day.

Technology is always evolving, and there is always something new to learn. How do you continue to hone your skills in this space?

In my free time I try to hone my skills by taking online certification class from Cisco. Since 2021, I have enrolled in five Cisco certification classes that were offered by Cisco Networking Academy. The classes I have completed are Routing and Switch, Cyber Security Essentials, Intro to Cyber Security, Intro to Linux, and Intro to IOT.

I believe Cisco Networking Academy is a excellent resource for anyone looking to get into the Information Technology field. The classes are tough, but they have a lot to offer and provide so much knowledge about technology. I currently hold five certifications and I intend to continue honing my skills by enrolling in more Cisco certification classes.

What’s the most exciting, or rewarding, project you’ve had the opportunity to work on at Accolade?
The most exciting project I had the opportunity to work on at Accolade was doing security updates in Qualysis. Qualysis is a security system that is used by the cyber security team at Accolade. This system is used to protect all the laptops, domains, servers, and websites at Accolade. I was asked to help with testing Qualysis before it was purchased by the company. It was an honor to be able to use the software and test it!
It’s so important to find a community at work, especially at a large company. Tell us about your community – how do you stay connected, motivate one another, and work together?

I stay connected at work with my team by doing daily Zoom meetings and asking for help. There is so much to learn that it’s impossible to know everything. I always ask for help if I can’t figure out the issue. Talking with my team daily also builds a better work relationship among everyone and makes work a little easier.

If you were to provide ONE piece of advice to a college student or recent graduate who is interested in pursuing a career in tech, what would it be?

A word of advice to college students and recent graduates: never lose sight of your goals! People will always tell you that you can’t do something, but as long as you chase your dreams and don’t lose sight of the bigger picture, you will succeed. I failed 19 times before I landed my first I.T. job. I’m so happy that I never gave up because the end goal was worth it. If you believe in yourself, no one can hold you back except for you!

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