Q&A WITH engHERO: Tina Traini
Tina Traini is the Director, IT Systems and Solutions at Right To Play. Right To Play is a global organization that uses the transformative power of play – playing sports, playing games – to educate and empower children facing adversity.
What’s one thing you wish you knew about engineering back when you were in high school?
I knew that an engineering education would be hard and rewarding but I didn’t realize that it would teach me how to learn and solve problems in a way that would be applicable to any field/challenge in life.
What’s your proudest accomplishment as an engineer?
Outside of school, it would be hard to pick. I’ve done some pretty cool things with different clients all over the world. These were always a team effort so it’s easy to be proud of what you and your team have accomplished when the task seems complex and daunting and in the end, you have a satisfied client. During school, I worked with a few classmates to start a musical show entirely created and executed by engineering students. To work together with my peers to pull of something so creative was absolutely fantastic. The McMaster Engineers still put on the show every year. It makes me pretty proud.
Tell me about a time in your career when your work has been about discovery or curiosity?
In 2007 I decided to participate in a program my company had to offer consulting services to charity groups and spent time working for Plan International. I was fascinated to see how the skills and experience I had in IT could be useful in the not for profit world. It was a very rewarding experience that ultimately led me to where I am now.
What are you doing these days?
Right now I am working as the Director, IT Systems and Solutions at Right To Play. Right To Play is a global organization that uses the transformative power of play – playing sports, playing games – to educate and empower children facing adversity. My team and I manage IT operations for 7 donor and 20 field offices around the world and coordinate all new solution development to support our work.
During school, I worked the summers at a microelectronics company doing R&D and new business development. When I finished school I had no idea what was next but met an alumnus at a career fair who convinced me to look at consulting as a career. I was hooked and I went straight into technology consulting with a global firm weeks after graduation. I spent nearly 14 years there working in all kinds of industries solving client challenges. I don’t think I had any idea where I was headed when I started this journey but have been very fortunate with the opportunities I have made/found along the way.
Do you feel your work contributes to society? How so?
Absolutely! At Right To Play, my work enables our program delivery that impacts the lives of over one million children around the world (and even in Canada and the US). My team is responsible for making sure that Right To Play employees can collaborate and connect and that the systems, processes and policies they need are in place and well supported.
Why do we need more female engineers?
Everyone has something unique to contribute to the field of engineering. The more diverse and inclusive the field can be the more creative and visionary. This includes making sure that women occupy many seats at the table.
Check out Right to Play