IT Staff Spotlight – Jaime Tryon, Project Manager, Student and Academic Support Systems

Jaime Tryon, Project Manager, Student and Academic Support Systems

Throughout Jaime Tryon’s career, she has learned that many skills are transferrable, and individuals can pivot in unexpected ways. As a project manager in Student and Academic Support Systems (SASS), Jaime works on the “technical side of the house.” She started her still burgeoning employment journey on the functional side of higher education.

Born in Colorado, Jaime grew up hiking and camping with her family. She received a B.A. in French and cross-cultural studies from Whitworth University and an M.A. in strategic communication from Washington State University. She worked in France teaching French as part of a study abroad program in between degrees.

After returning to the U.S., she continued working in higher education. At the University of Oregon, she worked in the registrar’s office. She then worked at Bushnell University, where she taught a study abroad preparatory class and was also director of academic advising. Four years ago, she moved to New Haven, Connecticut, with her husband, who earned a graduate degree at Yale’s School of Architecture.

During a job fair, Jaime connected with a Yale ITS professional who encouraged her to consider a position in IT. Although she knew it would be challenging, she embraced the opportunity to grow her career in a new direction and hasn’t looked back.

Today Jaime manages two current initiatives— the Early Registration project and the Online Learning Analysis project. The first phase of the Early Registration project was recently completed and included upgrading the Yale College registration system. The SASS team is now focused on moving the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences into a more accessible and modern registration tool. The Online Learning Analysis project is focused on improving the institution’s support of non-degree educational programs. Jaime is also the service offering manager for registration.

During a recent chat, Jaime shared some stories about her love for the outdoors and advice for early IT professionals.

What was your first job?

When I was about 13 or 14 years old, I was part of a landscape crew. It was tough work, but I loved being outside and could see the tangible effects of my labor immediately. For me, that job instilled a lifelong solid work ethic.

Favorite childhood memory?

I have many great memories of camping trips with my family throughout the Western U.S. We’d hike and kayak, and then make s’mores by the campfire. The best part was getting to explore so many beautiful landscapes – mountains, beaches, and deserts. Those trips laid the foundation for my love of both travel and the outdoors.

Favorite Yale memory?

Before the pandemic, our team went on a retreat to Benjamin Franklin College where the Yale Hospitality chefs taught us how to make some of their signature dishes. I was assigned to the sea scallops station, and I was so impressed with the quality of food the team prepared. It was a wonderful opportunity to connect with my colleagues away from the office, and we all enjoyed visiting one of the residential colleges.

How is your job tied to the mission of the University or Yale IT?

Our team supports over 50 student and academic applications and around 200 integrations, so there are many ways our work directly supports the institution’s academic goals. Tools like Course Demand Statistics help faculty evaluate course interest and adjust their offerings to meet student demand, while registration applications are used by virtually every student on campus. We strive to ensure our services are reliable and easy for stakeholders to use. In my role, I work closely with the University Registrar’s Office and other departments across campus to ensure we’re providing excellent service quality.

What advice would you give to someone considering a career in IT?

One of the things I love about working in IT is that you are never done learning so cultivate a learning mindset – ask questions and be proactive about seeking growth opportunities. Although technical skills are probably the first thing many people think of when considering a career in IT, soft skills like excellent communication and strong interpersonal abilities are also incredibly valuable and needed in this space. Many of the most important abilities I bring to my current role were cultivated while working in student support; be creative in thinking about how existing skills could transfer to IT.

Tell us a few fun facts about yourself.

I love to travel, and one of my favorite trips was driving over 2,000 miles on gravel roads through rural Namibia. With some of the clearest night skies in the world, camping under the stars was unforgettable. I am also a winter sports enthusiast and during high school, I was a downhill ski racer. When my husband and I moved to Connecticut, hiking Maine’s Mount Katahdin was one of the highlights of our first year on the East Coast.