Emily Smith: Women in Technology at Ohio State

Java programming. It's more than your normal cup of Joe.

Emily Smith is an OCIO App Programmer on the front lines coding improvments into the JavaScript background of ServiceNow. She has presented her work at conferences and enjoys looking for new ways to automate and streamline processes to make platforms more powerful an user friendly. 

As part of our #OSUWomenInTech series, we had a chance to sit down with Smith to learn more about her daily job, how she stays up on industry news and what technology she is most excited about. 

Can you describe your day-to-day job?
I build applications and configure integrations on top of the Service Now platform that help to improve OCIO processes. Day to day is a lot of coding in JavaScript and Service Now’s Java extended class.

When (and how) did you decide to work in the technology field? 
When I was a kid my mom enrolled me in a NASA class that taught a range of engineering subjects. I totally fell in love with engineering, particularly the logic design of robots and the creativity of web development. In high school I took a few programming courses which inspired me to study Software Engineering at Ohio State.

What advice can you give young women who would like to take on a position in the technology field? 
Never let anyone make you feel inferior. Focus on your passion and have confidence in your skills.

How do you stay up-to-date with new trends in the technology world?
This is my biggest struggle. I am always trying to find the “latest and greatest” in development tools. I spend a lot of time reading Medium articles by my favorite developers. I think gaining many perspectives on how to solve problems keeps you creative and forward thinking with your solutions.

What has been your favorite moment/experience from working in the technology field? 
Any time I’ve solved a problem that didn’t have an obvious solution. It’s also great to see products I’ve helped build have a positive impact on how work gets done at OSU, like the OCIO System Status page, the Self Service Time Tracking portal, and the BuckeyeBar kiosk.

Another favorite experience was when I was given the opportunity to present Ohio State’s Self Service application at the Service Now Knowledge conference. It was awesome to showcase all the innovative tools we’ve built on the platform.

What has been the hardest part of working in the technology field? 
The wrist strain that comes from long periods of coding when I’m in the zone. Just kidding. The hardest part is probably trying to always step up your game. User interfaces and what is considered ideal programming is always evolving. It’s important to continue to grow and advance your skill set.

Is there any technology that you are particularly excited about right now? Why?
The latest skill I have acquired is AngularJS. It’s how we’re building all of our new Service Now applications on Self Service. I’m pretty excited about how much quicker and cleaner we can spin up new tools.

I’m also excited about all of the automation requests our team is building using Service Now’s orchestration. Automation is the future and it’s great to streamline old methods. It’s given me a great opportunity to learn more about how other technologies are being used in the OCIO.

This feature blog post is part of our #OSUWomenInTech campaign. Hear more stories from female leaders involved in technology at Ohio State by following us on Twitter @TechHubOSU and stopping in store to see our digital signage features. Are you interested in getting involved with technology? Don’t forget to check out our Student Developer Kit and student project development grant opportunities.