Design Tech HS field trip to Nutanix



Female students from Design Tech High School traveled together to Nutanix ( in San Jose. Here we are in the main showcase meeting room.

Nutanix has a relaxed and professional atmosphere. We arrived on the Bad Christmas sweater day so many employees had terrible and fun sweaters. Special thanks to Michele Taylor-Smith, the Senior Director, Corporate Social Responsibility, who was the most gracious guide and spent the whole day with our group. She introduced the cloud storage company to us.  

We were introduced to the Sales lead who took time to talk with us. We got to jump into this breakout room for fun. The ball room was just outside the Engineering open architecture cubbies. Students were introduced to the snack areas where they got to select ice-cream and snacks which made them relax into the company style.


Design Thinking is at the heart of our education at Design Tech HS.  So, by chance Design Thinking is also a big part of Nutanix process so they had our students created a solution to a morning problem through Design Thinking. Students were very interested that what they are learning at school is also applied to to a big company such as Nutanix.

We heard from a panel of professionals:
Carrie Banker, IT System Admin, Wendy M. Pfeiffer, CIO, Sangeeta Relan, Senior Director of Quality Engineering, and Melina McLarty, Staff User Experience Designer. Each professional spoke about their struggles as a female in the tech industry and how they overcame the suppression and grew professionally to higher levels. The panel was incredibly powerful and the students were empowered. Thank you all for telling your stories!


All of the students learned a lot and felt empowered as a female. Teachers came up to me to report how much students talked about the experience during their Ignite Trip to Nutanix.


Thank you Ignite and Nutanix for the amazing and powerful day!


Tera Freedman

IGNITE Advisor

Design Tech High School

December 13, 2018

After attending this event:


of girls/non-binary students are more interested in STEM


of girls/non-binary students want to study harder to attend college and further their education

Here’s what the students had to say:

“I enjoyed the way we felt so welcome at the company and how inspiring it was to see such successful, wonderful women.” – 9th grade

“I liked touring the company and seeing the similarities between my school and the design of the company’s system, layout and the way they work. What really inspired me was listening to everyone’s stories and how different their paths were! They were very encouraging and reminded us that we can decide how our future turns out. It inspired me to look further into what kind of STEM career to pursue.” – 10th grade

“I enjoyed the design thinking workshop because I was able to practice using the design thinking process. It helped me understand how this process can also be used in a professional environment. I also thoroughly enjoyed listening to the stories of the four employees at Nutanix who spoke to us. All of their stories were very inspiring and it gave me some insight into the STEM field. This event inspired me to find internship opportunities at tech companies.” – 12th grade

“I really liked the tour of the company, especially learning about the different groups of employees (departments) and how they work together, and also learning about the company motto and environment. I also enjoyed the 4 speakers who talked about being self-confident and how they made it to where they are today.” – 11th grade