School of IT graduates find interesting and challenging careers
The School of Information Technology (IT) strives to prepare students for success in a wide variety of professional roles in IT. The school frequently hosts visits for prospective students and parents who are exploring options for academic programs in information technology. And, one of the questions high on their list is, “What kind of jobs do School of IT students find after graduation?” To help answer this question, we recently reached out to recent graduates and asked them to tell us about their current professional roles. Their responses are very interesting. Here is a sample:
Rachel Schifano (computer science, 2015)
Rachel Schifano began her career as an iOS developer at State Farm, where she worked on the Drive Safe and Save telematics application. In 2017 she moved to the San Francisco area to join Nest/Google as an iOS applications engineer/software engineer (SWE).
“I love my job. I work cross-functionally with UX, embedded, hardware, and product to build full product hardware,” Schifano said. “I’m an everything engineer.”
She offers this advice for success: “If you work hard, have a passion and curiosity, can be a good leader, you can work at any company you want. My colleagues are from literally everywhere in the world from every background imaginable.”
Randy DeVitto (computer science, 2018)
Randy DeVitto is an associate applications developer at US Foods Inc. in Rosemont. He interned with U.S. Foods in the summer of 2017 and was converted to full time following his June 2018 graduation.
“The experience from college to full-time work was an amazing experience that taught me life lessons I could have only dreamed of. Since graduating, I have networked with all kinds professionals and started down a path that’ll lead me to higher places. I have been lucky enough to be part of a development team (at US Foods) that updates a multibillion dollar ecommerce platform.”
DeVitto said this about his time at Illinois State: “All in all, my experience at ISU has taught me how to carry myself as an IT professional. I attribute all my current life success to the lessons I was taught while studying at ISU and I wouldn’t trade it for anything else.”
Brandon Volker (network and telecommunications management, 2018)
Brandon Volker launched his career as a network operations engineer with Discover Financial Services. He interned with Discover during the summer of 2017 and returned as a full-time employee following his 2018 graduation.
“Since joining Discover, I’m surprised at how many learning opportunities have been presented! We really get to ‘touch’ quite a few different technologies from traditional route/switch to DNS to load-balancing, network visibility, and some of Cisco’s new application driven technology. I am having a great time here and very much looking forward to seeing where the field is headed!”
Jordan Shifflett (Information systems–info systems assurance and security, 2018)
Jordan Shifflett was one of four Illinois State IT students who participated in an innovative internship pilot program with Levi Ray and Shoup Inc. (LRS) during the summer of 2018. Upon his graduation in December 2018, he joined LRS as a full-time employee.
Shifflett advises that his career with LRS is just getting up to speed, and he is working on the security team in the IT solutions division developing security solution offerings. He is working in the area of data obfuscation to mask and redact unstructured data. “I look forward to the future of my career with LRS.”
Nick Frichette (computer science, 2017)
Nick Frichette is a penetration tester at State Farm, where his job is to discover vulnerabilities in the infrastructure and software. He said his favorite part of this role is identifying zero-day exploits and working with software vendors and developers to protect against them.
“I feel like going through the computer science program as ISU has really prepared me for this job.” He also took advantage of the IT Professional Mentorship Program that matches students with successful professionals to help them prepare for the professional world. “When I was a student, I really benefited from the IT Mentorship program where I got to learn about what life is like out in the real world.”
Since graduation he has begun giving back by doing a guest class presentation on penetration testing for the cybersecurity program.
Evan Rappe (Information systems–info assurance and security, 2017)
Evan Rappe began his career as a systems administrator with Archer Daniels Midland in Decatur upon graduation. He was soon named as global storage lead, and his responsibilities included most data center technologies such as SANs, virtualization, and cloud.
In October 2018 he relocated to Chicago and now works as a systems administrator for ADM Investor Services, a subsidiary of ADM. His current responsibilities include virtualization, cloud computing, and disaster recovery.
The School of IT finds great satisfaction in hearing that our recent graduates have found satisfying careers as IT professionals. If you would like to explore how the School of IT can help you prepare to launch your career, learn more about us on our website.