Guild Careers: Alex Mangurian
Meet Alex Mangurian!
As part of National Career Development Month, we are highlighting some employees at Guild who have transitioned into different roles during their time with us. Check out their Q&As to see what they have to say about their career paths at Guild. Interested in joining our team? Visit https://www.guildeducation.
- Business Intelligence Infrastructure Developer
Other roles held at Guild
- Student Success Advisor
- Business Intelligence Analyst
Tell us about your career journey and what led you to Guild.
I got my degree in Mechanical Engineering but I was far more inspired by assisting and enabling other young women to pursue technical degrees and careers and be prepared for what they might encounter on their path. So I became a high school math teacher and taught in two different schools for a total of five years and thought I might teach forever. But plans aren’t perfect, and I chose to move on from education for at least some time. I found Guild and started as a student success advisor. It was a natural fit for my passion of building relationships and enabling others to pursue their passions as well.
What was the path like to transition into a different role at Guild?
I was using our internal tools to reach out to students and kept thinking “this could maybe be better” or “what if I tried that out?” So I dove into the Looker tool and tried my hand at learning all I could and building things that might be useful. A position opened up on the Business Intelligence team and I applied, interviewed, got the role, and was amped about the opportunity.
Moving into the tech org is intimidating at first but everyone is so nice and loves sharing and teaching as much as anyone I have ever met, which makes the transition way easier. Lots of pair-programming where I would drive with some assistance on projects that increased in difficulty and complexity was crucial to building the technical chops that I am still continually working on improving. The chance to work on a hard problem and really grapple with it is one of the best ways to learn and really accelerated my development.
How has your past work experience helped you in your new role?
My knowledge of student programs and how our data is used by people in our organization has been invaluable. Knowing what information is flowing where and who might be affected by changes gives me an important voice when thinking about systems and how to make sure our data is as consumable in the easiest way possible.
What contributed to your success with landing a new role?
Curiosity was probably the most important part of landing a new role. Asking questions that may or may not have answers and taking the initiative to track down as much as I could on my own led to making Looker dashboards with a fresh take. I couldn’t learn it all on my own, but people were so ready and willing to answer questions that peaked their interest and engage with my excitement.
What are some lessons you learned along the way?
Moving into a new role takes a delicate balance of self-motivated learning, trusting the knowledge that you are bringing, and asking for help to bridge gaps and share. There have been times where I have felt like an imposter in the tech department, but many people reaching out and trusting my ability to work hard and learn has helped me integrate and help others with the knowledge that I bring from the Student Experience side.
Can you share more about what you do in your role now?
I maintain the tables that power Looker, our data visualization tool. Currently, I am transitioning our sources of truth over to the services work that is happening in the product where our systems are getting better at talking to one another. Our operational tools and external reporting to partners should benefit from that consolidated source of truth, and I am implementing that. I write a lot of SQL, review code from the work of my teammates and others developing in Looker, and balance time between ad hoc requests and larger project work.