Tuesday, October 8, 2019

#SheCanSTEM: Sandra Hicks

MLGW has 2770 employees; 752 (27%) are women. Of the 752 women, 143 (19%) hold STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) positions. On the second Tuesday of every month, we will introduce you to a different woman working in STEM at MLGW.

Sandra Hicks’ first interest in STEM fields came when she was a sophomore in college and was ready to declare a major. “I remember one Christmas break going through the Memphis State catalog and trying to determine what I wanted to do as a career.  I loved math and did very well in it, so when I saw Computer Science included eight different math courses, I figured that was the major for me!” she says.

At the time, there were not very many females in the computer science field minoring in Management Information System computer programming, so she was determined to continue the course. She started her career at MLGW 30 years ago as a computer programmer and later became database administrator for a mainframe system and an Oracle DBA (database administrator).

For the past 11 years she has been in the Business Intelligence/Data Warehouse area where she is the Lead Business Systems Analyst responsible for extracting and analyzing data for company reporting and dashboards.

We asked Sandra a few questions to get to know her better.

What do you do in your current position? 
I am responsible for making sure the data from source systems such as the Oracle E-Business Suite's HR/Payroll, Finance, Enterprise Asset Management, Procurement and Spend, as well as many other applications at MLGW, are loaded into our warehouse databases to provide data solutions to our users through analytical reports and dashboards. 

What's interesting or cool about what you do?
I get an opportunity to work with a diverse group of people and various areas around the company. I work closely with Finance, Work Management, HR and many other areas to gather user requirements and assist with finding data solutions to any issues they may have.  As a result, I gain exposure to many of the processes that help make our company function on a day to day basis.
Why would you encourage girls to pursue STEM careers? 
Even now, some girls still believe that careers in science, technology, engineering and math are for males to pursue. If math, for instance, is your passion, there are many opportunities in this field and it is very rewarding with good pay. Because there's no turning back when it comes to technological advances, now is a great time to get on board. 

What advice would you give your younger self?
Realize your strengths early and research a variety of careers that would allow your strengths to become your career. Pursue your dream career with confidence.

Did you miss our other installments of #SheCanSTEM? Meet Arnisa Davis, Kelsey Seiter, Debra Higgins, Kerry Roy, Cynthia Jones, Juanita Ford and Shleah Whitlock.

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