Chris Rapposelli-Manzo

Principle Lead Member of Technical Staff, at&t
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"My advice is to clearly identify your priorities and goals, and use your time to create a rewarding life."

INTERVIEW DATE December 13, 2007
HER JOB Principle Lead Member of Technical Staff, at&t
Engineering Careers
Computer |

My strong interest in mathematics and science and encouragement from college professors led me to choose a career in engineering.

ADDEDThursday, December 13, 2007

  • Q
    Describe what you do in your current work situation?
    A
    I have 20 years of professional experience with almost 5 years as a working mother. I am currently working in a project management and systens engineering support role for data mining applications at at&t Labs as a Principal Technical Staff Manager. I've been involved in metrics development, "Voice of the Customer" methodologies, the front end of systems engineering, and new product and service realization processes.
  • Q
    Why did you choose engineering?
    A
    My strong interest in mathematics and science and encouragement from college professors led me to choose a career in engineering.
  • Q
    Where did you go to school and what degree(s) do you have?
    A
    I attended the State University of New York at Binghamton, graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Math, Computer Science, and Spanish Literature and Language. While working at AT&T Bell Labs as a software engineer, I attended Stevens Institute of Technology in New Jersey and obtained my master's degree in Computer Science. In continuing my education, I obtained an AT&T sponsored MBA certificate from Wharton University and a masters certificate in Project Management from George Washington University.
  • Q
    What kinds of activities have typically been part of your work?
    A
    After graduating SUNY, I was hired by Northrop Grumman, where I developed software systems for military aircrafts. Next, I took a position with AT&T Bell Labs as a software engineer. I was involved with projects having to do with data communications equipment, an optical character reader for automated mail sorting for the US Postal Service, and Fixed Wireless. I enjoyed first tier systems engineering work at the customer interface and high-level software design, which led me to pursue a position in process engineering. In this engineering field, I applied the same engineering techniques to more business-oriented applications, such as sales, provisioning, maintenance, billing, and other business operations, with the goal of bringing new offers into service and reducing costs by creating efficient work processes. I am currently working in a project management and systems engineering support role for data mining applications.
  • Q
    What do you like best about being an engineer?
    A
    I enjoy the challenge of figuring out the technical issues and creating something of value to the organization and forming high performing teams. I also enjoyed the continuous learning and variety of work projects AT&T Bell Labs had to offered.
  • Q
    Which of your career accomplishments are you proudest of?
    A
    I am most proud of my process engineering patent (pending) application and for the work I did as co-chairperson of a volunteer program called the Systems Engineering Talks Program (SETP), where we mentored and encourage women and minorities to pursue careers in systems engineering and linked students with AT&T's summer internship and full time employment programs.
  • Q
    What challenges have you met and conquered in your pursuit of an engineering career?
    A
    The biggest challenge I've found is promoting myself and getting recognition my work.
  • Q
    Please tell us a little about your family.
    A
    My husband and I have been married for 20 years and have two daughters, 4.5 and 1.5 years old. My husband is a chiropractor and we try to live a holistic lifestyle. I have two sisters who both have successful careers and family's of their own.
  • Q
    What are your short-term (1-2 years) and long-term (10+ years) goals?
    A
    My short term goal is to successfully continue my career, continue my music studies and raise my children. Long term, I would like to travel and learn about other cultures and join another rock-n-roll band.
  • Q
    What (or who) had/has the greatest influence on your life choices?
    A
    Family, my professors at college and my Mentor at Northrup Grumman.
  • Q
    What advice would you give to a young woman considering a career in engineering?
    A
    My advice is to clearly identify your priorities and goals, and use your time to create a rewarding life.
  • Q
    Quote
    A
    "Clearly identify your priorities and goals, and use your time to create a rewarding life."
  • Q
    Any other stories or comments you would like to share with EngineerGirl visitors?
    A
    My advice is to clearly identify your priorities and goals, and use your time to create a rewarding life.
  • Q
    Describe something about your life outside of work: your hobbies, or perhaps a favorite book.
    A
    Now having two young children I have less time for personal interests outside of my work, and spend my free time supporting my children’s curiosity and learning. I try to find time to expose the children to music and played guitar and violin in a rock band until having my second child. I still enjoy weightlifting, spinning, aerobics and skiing, wine-making and learning romance languages.