Greatra Mayana

Career & Employment Opportunities

Meet Jess, a Microsoft Field Engineer


I’m Jess Borland. I work for Microsoft as a premiere field engineer
in the data and AI domain. The coolest part of my job is getting to go
to conferences and events and get in front of sometimes dozens, sometimes hundreds of
people, and talk about the technology that I love. I get to present on the latest, greatest,
cutting-edge data tools and technologies from Microsoft and to see people sitting in the
audience getting excited about that, seeing light bulbs go on about how they can solve
problems that they have, having them come up to me afterwards with excitement, with
questions, makes my day. We have companies that are big and have been
here for a long time. Think the Kimberly-Clarks that we have, and
Plexus, and… These companies are all not only using technology,
but they are innovating. We have a really strong foundation of people
that have either moved here, or have grown up here just like I have, who are very invested
in seeing the Fox Valley and the Northeast Wisconsin become a major technological player. In high school, I loved English. I wanted to be a high school English teacher. I loved reading, I loved writing. I thought for sure I could teach high school
English 9 months of the year, and then write my novels and my poetry the other 3 months. The interesting thing is now, that I am a
teacher. It’s not high school, and it’s not English,
but I’ve gotten to do what I really wanted to do back then, which was teach. I was initially going to go and be a computer
programmer, but then in high school I took a class on structured query language or querying
data. Once I started doing that and realizing that
businesses have these volumes of data that they are collecting about everything, I chose
to work with data, realizing that that is the next generation. Microsoft has over 65,000 employees just in
the US alone and while a lot of the jobs that are building the software, the actual coders
for, say, Microsoft Office or the Xbox games are in Washington, there’s a whole infrastructure
of people around the US. Sales, support, engineers like myself. So I get to work from home, fully-supported
by my regional team, and then I just get to travel to my customers that are also in the
Midwest and sometimes out to Microsoft in Washington. I really loved being able to create things. I realized that the world is going digital
and everything from what people see on websites to the applications we use everyday at work,
everything involves programming in some way or another. It doesn’t matter what industry you want to
be in, it doesn’t matter what you want to be when you grow up, everything involves computers
and programming and if I could learn those skills, I could go anywhere and do anything
I wanted.

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