Participant story: Elizabeth
“I was thrilled beyond belief — there was actually a place that was willing to train me and give me a fighting chance to enter the tech space again.”
1) Tell us a little about your life.
With a last name like Hadik-Barkóczy, you might be able to tell I was born to immigrant parents in San Francisco. I was raised smack in the middle of the Haight-Ashbury district in the '60s. Fresh out of high school, I pursued a triple major in computer science, mathematics, and history with the intention of becoming an attorney. My formal education ended up becoming short-circuited by technology, and I was very fortunate to work with a talented group of people on ground-breaking projects with Intel, Seagate, S3, Charles Schwab, and many more. Sensing the winds of change coming, I exited tech in 2000. I was able to travel the world for a few years and came back down to earth five years later to bring tech to the retail restaurant market, by creating a first-of-its-kind integrated digital system that set a trend for the restaurant industry.
2) What made you decide to apply for Techtonica?
Having “fallen out of tech,” it has been very difficult to get work in tech with my “outdated” experience (I put the word “outdated” in quotes because the fundamentals of design and creativity in technology never really change). Two years of resume writing and networking failed to produce any results. So then while at CCSF, one of my instructors told me about Techtonica. I was thrilled beyond belief — there was actually a place that was willing to train me and give me a fighting chance to enter the tech space again. Techtonica, under the direction of its impassioned leadership, has the absolute best approach by creating a work atmosphere that empowers its graduates through compassion all the while arming them with both hard and soft skills. It’s something no other place can offer.
3) What are you most excited to learn while at Techtonica?
I am most excited to master the new tools that are out there. Having produced and managed projects in technology in the past, this time around it will be exciting to have the hands-on experience of actually writing the code to create things in tech. I am also excited to be collaborating with like-minded team members, all of whom are working towards the same goals.
4) What do you want to contribute to or change about the tech industry?
I would love to simply continue or expand upon what Techtonica is currently doing — empower those that need a leg up and give them the opportunity to break into a field that is life-altering.
5) What’s your dream project?
If I could, I would love to be able to create a little R2D2 of my own: the humorous little personal assistant that rolls right alongside you, whatever assistance you need at the moment delivered with a sense of fun. Since industrial design is out of the scope for this endeavor, I will stick to creating something a little more realistic. Having experienced it for myself, I aim to create an app for cancer patients that would help manage the oh so many things that need to be managed in cancer care — and, believe me, it is an overwhelming amount. More importantly, this app will be a guide and a companion through the journey of fighting cancer. It will become an assistant, if you will, one with whom you develop a relationship and one that keeps your actions aligned with your intentions — a software version of R2D2, now that I think about it.