Make sure that you know your worth. Also, make sure you are up on the latest technology and information and don’t be afraid to ask for the money that you deserve.
Who is Jamila Brown Hairston?
Jamila Brown Hairston is a global innovation leader, entrepreneur, and published author of “Master Your Destiny”. She has earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Information Systems and earned her Master’s Degree in Instructional Technology Design. Hairston’s career trajectory landed her in executive leadership and technical enterprise design roles with Fortune 100 and 500 corporations. She has also advanced her skill set by becoming a certified webmaster and solutions expert on various enterprise systems and has gained experience with global teams utilizing UX/UI design, augmented reality and mobile application development.
Hairston has been recognized as Women of the Year for her community and leadership efforts in the STEM community and recently added Cloud Tech Academy to her business portfolio — Georgia’s only black-owned enterprise cloud software training and testing center with upcoming locations in Africa and the U.K. The academy prepares students for lucrative high-valued careers in today’s digital economy and has helped to gross more than $12 million in annual salaries to-date.
Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems & Master of Science in Post-Secondary Education with a Concentration in Instructional Technology Design
Recognized as VIP Woman of the Year in Tech, Top 50 Under 50 at my Alma- Mater, The Face of Technology Award, Technology Brand Ambassador, and Small Business of the Year.
How did you choose to pursue this field?
Since my father was an engineer, it allowed me to always have access to the latest gadgets and video games. We also built robots and other fun design projects together. Having these childhood experiences piqued my curiosity about technology. It really helped me develop problem-solving skills and my creativity early on as well. Honing these skills is what led me to innovative collaborations and executive leadership roles in technology with international brands throughout my career.
Who was your inspiration or role model that guided you to this field?
My grandfather was a big inspiration for me because he pushed me to pursue a career in technology because he saw that I was a natural at it and he recognized that technology had a world of great opportunities for me. He was also an investor and biggest champion when I decided to start my technology business.
Did you always have the desire to work in this field? If not, what was your intended field? Why did you change careers?
As I mentioned, I’ve always had a desire to be in the technology field since I was a kid. I think I’m starting to finally realize I was born for this and it is truly part of my passion and purpose.
What do you love most about your job?
I love being able to make an impact on others by providing the latest technology skills and professional development for technical career opportunities.
What has been the most rewarding aspect of your job or career?
It is quite rewarding to know that I have helped someone go from barely making ends meet to now being able to support their family and live their very best life all after completing one of our programs.
What things would you change about your job?
I actually would not change anything. I love what I do and the exact way that I am doing it. I just want to continue to impact more people who are looking for a more rewarding career path and opportunity.
What has been the most difficult or disappointing aspect of your job?
The most difficult aspect has been getting people to believe that they deserve to learn a new technology skill and that they are worthy of a high paying career. Many don’t believe it is possible because they may not have a previous background in technology or they may think it is hard. I always like to compare it to some of the things they have already been doing, like using a cell phone and social media. If you can manage and configure your phone or your social media page, you can do technology too.
How have you combated the stigma of being a “woman of color” in STEM?
The way I combat the stigma is by positioning myself to add the most impact and add immediate value. I make sure that I always learn the latest information as well as obtain the professional certifications that I need so that I will always be in high demand.
What tips would you offer for anyone thinking about entering into your profession?
Make sure that you know your worth. Also, make sure you are up on the latest technology information and don’t be afraid to ask for the money that you deserve.
What advice would you give your younger self about your career journey as a “woman of color” working in a predominantly white, male-dominated field?
The advice I would give is don’t get too emotionally attached to project demands. Make sure that you practice a healthy work-life balance and don’t overextend yourself. Proper organization and setting realistic timelines will be a major key factor in this area.
Can you provide some words of wisdom to young ladies thinking about entering a STEM field as a career choice?
There is a flood of opportunities especially for women who seek to engage in the technology space. The future is now and corporations are looking to increase their hiring and leadership promotions for women. Enterprise Cloud Technology, Cyber Security, Gaming, and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are in high demand right now. This is why it’s so important to have a highly valued skill. Having the proper training and certifications will help you increase your value in today’s market as well as increase your bank account and who doesn’t want that?
What is your favorite Quote? How do you apply this to your life?
“Beauty was not simply something to behold; it was something one could do.” -Toni Morrison
I love this quote because it reminds me of the 3 P’s for Success which are Passion + Purpose + Preparation. When you combine these 3 areas, it produces beautiful results. This has also been a reflection of my life by focusing on the beauty that I can add to the lives of others.
What are your future goals related to your career?
My goal is to make an impact around the globe. We are opening locations in W. Africa and London later this year. We also plan to partner with a few orphanages to help more young girls have the necessities they need and learn more about technology through our foundation arm.
How has your family influenced your journey and provide support?
My husband is my biggest supporter. He is also my business partner and he encouraged me to open Cloud Tech Academy so that we can help others find a high paying career in tech. We are both Cloud Engineers and work great together as a team.
What are some interesting facts about yourself that you would like to share?
I love being creative such as painting, designing arts and crafts, and cooking culinary dishes.
Contact Jamila Brown Hairston for any further questions: