Meet Some of the Innovative Women at UPMC Enterprises

Celebrate International Women’s Day 2019

We asked some of our employees to answer one of the following questions:

  1. What excites you about working as a woman in health care/tech?
  2. What excites you about the future as a woman in health care/tech?
  3. How do you think UPMC Enterprises is supporting growth for women in health care/tech?
  4. What advice would you give to other women in health care/tech?
  5. Who is your favorite female role model in health care/tech?

Read on for their answers and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter to join in this year’s campaign with the hashtag #BalanceforBetter and #IWD2019.

Robin Guter, Project Manager

Question: What advice would you give to other women in health care/tech?

“I would advise all women to stay ahead of the education and credentialing curve in their respective fields. It is important to always find opportunities to better ourselves and learn new skills in order to continue to qualify for new roles and promotions. Never get too comfortable!”

Krishna Sahithi, Sr. Software Test Engineer

Question: What excites you about the future as a woman in health care/tech?

“What excites me the most about the future as a woman in health care/tech, is the gradual increase in the number of women in this industry, which helps the future generation to look up to those influential women as their role models. Also, I am excited to see the future in which it is perfectly normal to see a lot of successful women in tech.”

Jody Madala, Sr. Product Manager

Question:  What excites you about working as a woman in health care/tech?

“Empathy is a critical component to building successful technology in health care – empathy for patients, their families, and caregivers. Health care is a very complex industry swirling around people who are often in the most vulnerable positions of their lives. The key to having a natural understanding of this is empathy. I believe women are inherently more empathetic than men and, in the past or even in other industries still, that may be viewed as a disadvantage. But, in health care and in technology having an innate understanding of our humanness gives women a natural advantage to really drive change and lead innovation.”

Rashmi Sagaram, Administrative Fellow

Question: Who is your favorite female role model in health care/tech?

“One of my favorite female role models in health tech is Melissa Manice, MPH, Ph.D. who is the Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Officer of Cohero Health. I worked with Melissa and the Cohero Health team as a graduate student and this experience truly solidified my interest in working in the areas of innovation, strategy, business development, and commercialization across the health care landscape. While Melissa’s background is in scientific and public health research, her drive to identify a solution to serve an unmet need despite a lack of extensive tech experience inspired me to consistently push myself beyond the boundaries of a traditional career in health care management and seek unique experiences in which I can utilize and develop my skills to make a meaningful impact on patient lives. More importantly, Melissa’s vision and passion extends throughout the entire Cohero Health team thus being a key attribute of the company’s growth and success. As an early careerist, I hope to emulate that same vision and passion to my work in the many years to come.”

Kathryn Heffernan, Associate Product Manager

Question:  How do you think UPMC Enterprises is supporting growth for women in health care/tech?

“I think that the FLIGHT events are a great example of how UPMC Enterprises is supporting growth for all employees. Each panel that I’ve attended in the last year has featured a diverse panel of women leaders from across UPMC and our city, and, as a result, I’ve learned something unique from each speaker’s experience. It’s great that a self-organized group of UPMC Enterprises’ team members has been able to put these panels on with the broader support of the company.”

Jeana Hollis, Sr. Manager, Marketing & Communications

Question: Who is your favorite female role model in health care/tech?

“Lenore Blum is a true role model for women. She has been paving the way for women in tech for decades, and she showed how standing up for yourself and being vocal about mistreatment can make a difference. I feel lucky to have seen her on the UPMC Enterprises Female Leadership (FLIGHT) panel to learn more about her career and hear her thoughts about women as tech leaders.”

Zariel Johnson, Program Manager – Technical

Question:  What excites you about the future as a woman in health care/tech?

“Health care is always evolving and right now it’s especially exciting given the multitude of powerful, data-driven solutions that are being introduced! There are unique challenges at the interface of health care and technology, but innovations have the potential to significantly improve care and how it’s delivered.”

Sara Fest, Sr. Director, Marketing & Communications

Question:  What excites you about working as a woman in health care/tech?

“When I was in college, I realized I had some interest in technology, but never seriously looked at it as a career path because I wanted to be in communications or marketing. As I moved along in my early years, I realized I could do both and have now been in the tech space for about 13 years, seven of which have been in health care specifically. For anyone interested in working in the field, you don’t need to be in a role like software engineer or programmer to make an impact in health care IT. Marketing is a great example of that. Our team works across a wide variety of areas whether it’s helping to launch a new company or plan a research driven event like the Top of Mind Summit. It’s exciting to come to work each day and find new and engaging ways to educate and inform our audiences about the latest in health care IT coming out of UPMC and our partners.”

Kelly Collier, Business Development Manager

Question:  How do you think UPMC Enterprises is supporting growth for women in health care/tech?

“I have found a few great mentors here at UPMC Enterprises, from both the leadership and my peers, that have helped me grow into my current exciting and fulfilling role while also helping to steer me towards my long-term career goals. Not only do we have groups like FLIGHT that promote women supporting women, but our culture also includes men who are equally welcoming, supportive, and encouraging regardless of your gender or background.”

Shraddha Gupta, Sr. Software Test Engineer

Question: What excites you about working as a woman in health care/tech?

“There has been such a large amount of innovation in health care tech. I am happy that I am able to contribute in an industry like health care which impacts every individual’s life. Today, UPMC is putting an effort towards making health care technology accessible to all, including people with disabilities. UPMC is doing great work in making its applications support assistive technology, such as, Speech Recognition Software, or Screen Reader Software so that everyone can take advantage of latest technologies in health care. I feel so happy and privileged as a woman that I am doing something which is helping people make their lives better. It gives me a sense of accomplishment.”

Hayley Hinkle, Manager, Engineering Operations

Question:  Who is your favorite female role model in health care/tech?

“I don’t necessarily have a specific person to call out as a role model for me. However, I do respect and look up to those moms in the workforce who achieve a work/life balance. I have a 3-year-old boy and a little one on the way and I struggle every day. So, shout out to those who have it together being a mom and having a career!!”

Krista Krebs, Designer

Question: How do you think UPMC Enterprises is supporting growth for women in health care/tech?

“At UPMC Enterprises, I recognize it’s a privilege to say I don’t feel like a woman working in health care; I feel like a person working in health care. My ideas and work are valued on their own merit, and there is a mutual level of respect between all of my teammates. It’s a place where diversity and differences are celebrated.”

Claudia Mena, HR Consultant

Question:  Who is your favorite female role model in health care/tech?

“Navy Rear Admiral Grace M. Hopper – AKA Grandma COBOL – a programming pioneer as well as a military veteran with a decorated career, helped invent some of the early English-language programming languages. Hopper was convinced that if programming were produced in a form that anyone could read, then there would be more programmers. She was correct and her innovation paved the way for today’s technology.”

Stacy Norman, Sr. Product Manager

Question:  What advice would you give to other women in health care/tech?

“Own your awesomeness! Too often, I hear women doubting themselves and the value they bring. Instead of wondering if we are doing the right thing or are on the right path, we need to trust ourselves and our skills. Be confident. Go after what you want. Push for what is right.”

 

Want to join these women in the next chapter of your career? Learn more about our open positions.