Ronnie (New Zealand born Cook Island/Tahitian/Samoan/Chinese) innovates to improve the lives of everyday people, in her role as a Solution Architect at ANZ.
What do you do on an average workday?
Kia Orana, Ia Orana, Talofa, Malo ni!
An average workday involves a decent soya latte and a lot of hat switching; Business & Tech Consulting, IT Architecture & Solution Design to Strategy, Roadmaps & Governance. My happy place is time spent to hypothesise and innovate to improve the lives of everyday people.
What did you study at school? And after high school?
In college I decided I wanted to be an Engineer (I was a bit of a ‘tutu’) and liked the idea of being hands on, so I studied Maths, Statistics, Physics, Chemistry, English and History. Unfortunately due to my parents marital split I had to forego studies to find work to pay the mortgage and raise three of four younger siblings.
Fast forward, a number of years later I found myself working for a small IT firm as an Office Manager and re-discovered my passion for engineering. At that time, the most effective option was to continue to work in IT and focus on vendor-based qualifications e.g. Microsoft, CISCO, Novell, TOGAF etc.
Was your study directly related to what you do now?
The subjects I studied in high school were useful in the areas of critical thinking, but the choices that I made during employment were specific to roles at the time.
This, combined with applied work experience and general life, has attributed to a more holistic approach to what I do today. To be honest, no matter where you are in your journey of life, remember how you got here and know there are lessons in everything we do - so keep an eye out for the teachings.
What would you like to share with young women who are thinking about their career choices right now?
If you have the luxury of time, take time to talk with people you trust and respect to help find or work out what brings you joy.
If all jobs paid the same, what would you do? Network and connect with people who are successful and willing to show you the way and take action!
What are some of your career highlights so far?
20+ years in tech has had many highlights!
Apart from being the first female IT Architect at ASB (great team of guys), one of my most rewarding highlights was working with industry partners and tertiary institutions to promote technology careers in South Auckland high schools, and being part of creating new partnerships that result in technology internships and employment opportunities.
My most recent highlight was being part of a video shoot for 100 Women in Tech with WIT legends Edwina Mistry and Kat Kolich.
Why do you believe engaging in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) is important to New Zealand?
I believe New Zealand is one of the most amazing countries in the world.
We are rich with culture, we are diverse and it is vital we are involved in technology today while influencing technology of tomorrow. My passion is to connect with others in our communities to design new ways to improve access and even the playing field to educate families and children to not only survive but also thrive in the Information Age.
Why is it important to have more women working in STEM?
We need people of all ages, races and creed to be involved today in shaping a better tomorrow.
As women, I encourage you to be who you are! We think differently, we care differently; we ‘do’ differently.
Do not overlook the numerous benefits of a career in technology and the flexibility it provides – it has been an amazing journey and I am always willing and open to share with anyone looking to enter the field of tech.
Ronnie Iosua is a Solution Architect at ANZ specialising in Data & Analytics. She’s been in technology for over 20 years and has worked across a number of verticals ranging from Banking, Insurance, Retail & Manufacturing, Telecommunications & Fintech.
This profile is part of our series of girls and women in STEM.
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