Meet Corchae, an ITWorks student in our newest Delaware class, starting tomorrow! Corchae recently moved back home to Delaware and hopes to start her professional life here, using ITWorks as a stepping stone to a career in IT. Read on to learn more!
ITWorks: What have you been doing prior to starting ITWorks in regards to work and/or school?
Corchae: I just completed a year at Norfolk State University this past May. The experience I was getting there didn’t seem worth the amount of money that I was paying. I felt like I could do more for myself closer to home here in Delaware. So I moved home and got a job at Wawa. I had applied to some positions that were in my field and with better pay, but I haven’t had much luck because of my lack of experience. I am starting a Computer Engineering program at Del Tech as well. I think pursuing my education here makes a lot more sense. When I was younger, as soon as touch screen phones came out, that’s when my interest in technology really began. It really hit me then just how much IT is part of our world, and how much it has the ability to change our world.
ITW: How did you hear about the ITWorks program? What made you decide to apply?
C: In the midst of applying for jobs, I happened to meet a woman at a family event who works at Barclays. She told me that her son graduated from this program called ITWorks. I immediately looked up the website and applied right then and there – I was so excited! It was exactly what I wanted. The most compelling aspect was the internship. The opportunity to work somewhere and get some experience is what has been preventing me from attaining many of the jobs I have applied for previously. I also was really happy to see that certifications were part of the curriculum. I had an opportunity to earn them in High School, but at the time it was really overwhelming, so I am ready to take those exams head on this time! I really am just ready for employers to take me seriously as a career-ready woman despite my young age.
ITW: What are you most looking forward to about the 11-week classroom portion of the program? Anything you are nervous about?
C: I’m looking forward to gaining knowledge. I think when we are in the classroom it’s really going to prepare us for the internship, so I want to take on as much knowledge as possible so it will help me down the road. I am also really looking forward to tying in my coursework at Del Tech to what I’m learning at ITWorks. I think they will complement each other really nicely. Otherwise, it’s just a new experience which is a little nerve-wracking, but I’ve been through a lot of new experiences so it doesn’t make me nervous anymore actually.
ITW: What are you excited about during the internship? Is there a specific experience you are hoping to walk away with?
C: I have never worked on a team in a company like many of the internship sites, so I’m really excited about getting exposed to that kind of corporate culture. Besides that, as I mentioned earlier, I just want to gain as much experience and knowledge as I can. I remember hearing about some of my previous classmates who interned at some of the same companies that support ITWorks, and they had really positive experiences.
ITW: What do you think graduation will be like? Any anxiety about looking for a job?
C: I will feel very, very, very accomplished because I have so much going on right now! I’m going to be on top of the world knowing that I graduated successfully. And I’ll be so grateful for all of the help I’ve received along the way because it’s getting me one step closer to my dreams. As far as navigating the job search, I already know that I will feel as though I actually have a chance when I’m applying for positions as opposed to previously when I did not have the experience to back up my passion. The confidence that comes with the internship and certifications will take my really far. And I know my mom will be really proud of me – I love making my mom proud!
ITW: What is/are your ultimate career goal(s)? Where do you want to be in the next year or two? Ten to 15 years?
C: Ugh – I still don’t know what the ultimate dream job is! There’re so many fields in IT, but I haven’t decided just yet. I am in engineering right now, but I’ve thought about security as well. I know I want to be in this field, because I don’t really like anything else but I can’t say exactly where I want to be just yet. Short-term though, I definitely want to earn my Associate’s and Bachelor’s degree. And I guess one of my goals would be to determine where I want to take my career in the long-run.
ITW: What has been/will be the impact of ITWorks in your life?
C: It’s been so beneficial so far knowing all of the things that I can achieve over 16 weeks. I’m getting experience, certifications, and access to so many professionals through networking – who gets to say they have done that in such a short period of time? Just the ITWorks students!
ITW: Why do you think programs like ITWorks are important? What benefits do they bring?
C: I think it’s very important because not everyone decides to go to school, and ITWorks offers a valuable alternative. Even though I’m doing both, not everyone is doing that. Providing young people an opportunity to learn in ways that they can be successful, especially in Wilmington, is so important for this community. And then it’s free! It’s eliminating some of the barriers to moving forward in their lives that my generation has.
ITW: After you complete the program, what is the one thing you are most excited about?
C: I can’t wait to apply for jobs! I can’t wait to say that I have my certifications and I’m qualified for the jobs that I want to apply for. Plus, I really can’t wait to be in a business environment. I know I’m setting myself up for greatness, which is the ultimate accomplishment for someone as young as me.
ITW: What are your hobbies, unrelated to information technology?
C: I like real estate, actually! I interned at Concord Realty last year and I really enjoyed that experience. I watch HGTV all the time, and I am a House Hunters expert! I also enjoy hair-styling for both myself and others. It is both a creative outlet and a stress relief for me.
ITW: Anything else we should know?
C: I'm happy that I got accepted to be in this program and even though I'm young, I am determined to finish what I start and make any sacrifices that will lead to me having a better future. ITWorks and my college courses that I'm taking will bring me the most opportunities for what I'm working to become.
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