Meet Alanis Nash! After graduating from Bradley in 2019 with a degree in Electrical Engineering with Computer Option, she moved to Seattle, WA and is currently working at Microsoft.
Tell us about your first position after graduating Bradley.
I started out of Bradley as a Program Manager at Microsoft. At Microsoft I work in Compliance for Windows, meaning I help make sure Windows will be enjoyable for all (and won’t break any laws)! I have worked both Internal and External to Microsoft which means I also got to have a hand in the new Windows 11 release! I also had the fun opportunity to work on Microsoft the Musical for fun as a lighting designer. You can check out the musical on YouTube!
How did Bradley prepare you for your position and the “real life” application of your degree?
Oh man, in so many ways! Obviously my engineering background gave me the confidence to do what I do, understand what I do, and have a deep understanding and empathy for the developers I work with. It also helps me solve problems in ways some of my coworkers may not have thought of! Starting the NASA project at Bradley really helped me know what I wanted to do in the future. It helped me see I wanted to be a Program Manager, and not a software developer. Having the opportunity to start something amazing, and to lead it was more preparation than I think I could put into words! My minors in Philosophy & Management & Leadership really taught me a lot too! Soft skills specifically: ways to understand how the leadership team talks, how to phrase careful topics, writing a really good work email, logic/reasoning, and so much more. Basketball Band & Tech Crew Management taught me how to have the tip-top most organized calendar on earth!! I think the main thing I really learned is that adding a bit of fun into what you do makes work so much better!
Describe your career path so far. Where do you see your future career taking you?
I’ve been in the same position at Microsoft since Graduating, and have had 1 promotion, and am looking for my next one hopefully soon. I’ve switched projects several times. Having the ability to go to my manager and say “I don’t like what I’m working on, I want to do something else” and having them listen every time is amazing. I get the opportunity to present to my leadership team, and work on technical items both. Which is absolutely amazing & exactly what I want to do. In the future I do see myself being a manager. I want to help drive others to success, and make sure they’re doing what they want to do with their careers.
What advice would you give to students currently looking at colleges?
For High School Students: College is your time to try new things, have fun, and discover what you like to do. Find somewhere that you can see yourself happy, studying, and making lifelong friends.
For current students looking forward: Find fun in whatever work you do. Nobody knows what they’re doing, everyone is making it up as they go. Find those who will support and push you to be your best!