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 Post subject: Career change question
PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 2:19 pm 
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My friend's husband is relocating him (no option to remain where he is) to Texas. There's not an option for him to stay in NY with his current employer and he makes good money, so they are moving. Mr friend works for NYS, so she has to leave her job to follow him to TX. Staying up here with her job isn't an option as they wouldn't be able to afford to live on her salary up here.

Since she's worked for NYS as a program auditor (she basically audits programs that receive money from the state) for so long, she's a bit worried that she won't find any comparable jobs in the private sector in Dallas. She's contemplating changing careers to IT, specifically networking/cybersecurity. She's smart enough to learn, and I don't think she'll have a problem earning her AAS at the local community college. I just don't know if an employer would hire a near-45 year old woman who spent two decades working as a state employee, especially for an IT job. They seem, just based on my workplace, and the workplaces I visit, to be very male-dominated. She asked me for advice, and I am at a loss to tell her yay or nay, as I don't know. Any of our IT people here weighing in would be much appreciated! If no one will hire her at her age, especially as a woman of her age, for an IT job, I want to be able to tell her that she might want to rethink that career move.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 3:56 pm 
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Our IT shop is pretty open to male and female, we don't really prefer one over the other, though that might be because the user community we support is more female than male, so we're not so shocked seeing women in the workplace doing fairly complex work.

Texas being Texas, though...when we lived there, it was pretty male-centered, and we lived in one of the "enlightened" areas - still a lot of ass-slapping and "you making coffee soon, little lady?" going on.

The age thing...I don't know. In my experience, it's generally more about whether you're a good fit, and 45 isn't that old. Also, cyber security is positively booming right now, that's a big help.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 4:26 pm 
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To be honest, the Texas thing was the biggest impediment to getting hired, at least in my opinion. I know that most network engineers/CCNAs are male, but I don't think it would be a huge barrier for my friend if she wasn't going to be in Texas. I remember what you've said about Texas, and what others have said about Texas, and I figured it is a pretty men's jobs/women's jobs environment. They will be in Dallas, so maybe companies will be more progressive about hiring women for roles other than secretary and receptionist. I'm sure women in any jobs in TX are still expected to get the coffee, clean up the kitchens or break rooms, and handle all the social stuff in the offices. I think that is just a given with Texas being Texas.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 5:14 pm 
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IT is generally more about whether you're competent than how old you are or if you're male or female. Though certain IT disciplines do have their fair share of "girls can't do computers" fuckery going on.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 5:21 pm 
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^I believe that she thinks that is more prevalent in programming, so that may be one reason she's thinking network/cybersecurity. She's also not the programmer type, and she thinks cybersecurity is really interesting.

I thought her age might actually help since she's not a young hottie guys will be more likely to harass. She's about 45 and speaks sarcasm like it's her second language. I've noticed that as I've gotten older, the young men do not try much shit anymore. Old ones still do the whole "women are dumb/can't whatever" shit, but the young ones leave you alone. Even if they think the "women are dumb/can't whatever" shit, it doesn't come out of their mouths.


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