Melanie Hopwood

How many years have you been in tech?

> 20

Tell me about your background. What were your early years like?

I had a lot of people who were wanting/willing to teach me. I started working in what was called ‘the computer room’ at the time. I was doing some data entry and lots of printing. At the time the printers were these big dot matrix types printers. I was responsible for keeping all the printers up and running and monitoring of the computers. I also had to ‘burn eproms chips’, as I did each of these things I tried to understand the reasons why, what, how… which I feel really helped me to learn at a grass roots level about IT. I feel these early days gave me a lot of confidence and a desire to learn ‘why does this do this…’ also found that I liked working with hardware/software.

How were you exposed to tech?

For me it’s been mostly been on the job and through my peers who’ve always been so helpful and willing to teach me and encourage me. I did go back to school but unfortunately my family came and I never finished. I’ve also taken classes via UMSL extension and Coursera.

What is your current role?

Interesting question, especially here at Asynchrony. I feel I have lots of ‘things’ that I do. I am a product owner on a DOD government project, I also have quality assurance responsibilities and provide training/support to National Guard Civil Support Teams.

What is your proudest accomplishment?

Of course I have to say my children 🙂 I have some personal things that I have gone through and am proud that I made it through them 🙂

What are you learning right now?

Trying to get my brain around IoT. The project I am on already integrates with sensors and provides a dashboard. I am trying to help drive the team towards taking this further and provide other clients with easy access to the information they need to know.

What advice do you wish someone had given to you? What advice would you give to others starting out?

Always look to help others out

What are your hobbies?

Hiking, biking and knitting

What do you like about St. Louis? The midwest? Why do you live here?

There is a sense of community here, even in the software industry. I’ve met lots of smart people and we are able to stay in touch. This community extends out to service work, my church, my kids school… I’m originally from a small town in Kentucky and I feel I fit in just as well here.

Who inspires you?

My children, my co-workers, my friends…

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