Employee Spotlight - Joanne Santiago

Photo of Joanne Santiago
June 30, 2023

What is your current role at Yale University?

I am currently an ITS Associate Director.

What are your main responsibilities?

I lead a distributed support providers (DSPs) team supporting the Yale administrative departments and four of the professional schools (Art, Drama, Divinity, and Music). 

What do you like most about your work?

Collaboration and learning about the work done at Yale toward serving the community at both the local and global levels.  

How does your job affect your general lifestyle?

The work I do here has made me more mindful of the effect ITS has on the contributions of faculty and staff with Yale’s mission.   

How did you begin your career?

Many moons ago, I started in the corporate industry of the law firm world. I began answering the phones on the help desk. Since then, I have worn many hats: desktop support and coordinator, trainer, client engagement liaison, supervisor, manager, to where I am today.  

What steps would you recommend one take to prepare to enter this field?

Decide and consider which parts of IT interest you. Is that something you really want to do? There is the people facing and back end sides of IT – consider what is best suited with your personality. Get certified in areas of interest. Obtain a Bachelor or Masters’ Degree in your desired field. 

Note: I have a BA in English with a minor in Philosophy, and a MA in Liberal Arts with a focus on the US Immigration systems and laws - the Dillingham Commission and the Immigration Act of 1965.

What skills, abilities, and personal attributes are essential to success in your job/this field? 

Learn humility and patience. You will not know everything there is to know in IT and surround yourself with subject matter experts, mentors, supportive colleagues, and peers.

If you could do it all over again, would you choose the same path for yourself? If not, what would you change?

I do not subscribe to shoulda / woulda scenarios so I would not change anything. I have been fortunate in my career and it has enabled me to provide for my family and provide opportunities to my children helping them grow into successful adults. 

What does YLNG mean to you and how have you contributed as a member?

Opportunities to meet folks with similar cultural backgrounds, sharing knowledge, and experiences. Meeting allies who want to know my cultural community. Participating in events and getting leadership input from all that have come before me. Importantly, I want to leave YLNG better and in a good place for those that come after me.