Director of Marketing Joins Questeq

I am pleased to announce Mr. Jared Souder as Questeq’s Director of Marketing. Jared will be responsible for brand development, lead generation and customer success. In addition, he will be a valuable contributor in the areas of competitive sales and business strategies.

He brings over a decade of leadership experience focused on marketing and business development in industries ranging from telecom to social services, and in organizations ranging from startup to Fortune 50.  His work has been recognized in the past through numerous media outlets, including Pittsburgh Magazine’s 40 Under 40 as an honoree.  Jared is a veteran and former officer in the United States Army.  He holds an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh and a BS in Business Administration from Youngstown State University.

I am confident he will be a great addition to the Questeq leadership team. Over the next three months, Jared will be meeting with many of our people, learning our processes, learning our culture and how we do business.  We look forward to having Jared on the team.

Director of Business Administration Speaks to Students at BCCTC

Our partner school, Beaver County Career and Technical Center, has a new initiative to engage local school students with employers to learn about future career options and the benefits of vocational schools. As Director of Business Administration at Questeq, I was honored to be the first professional speaker in this series of events.

Having worked with BCCTC in different capacities over the past 10 years, I have learned how important the vocational school is in preparing students for their futures using skill-based learning. I was never introduced to the option of attending a vocational school when I was in high school, and I wonder if my career path would’ve been different if I was able to hone my love of cooking with BCCTC’s culinary arts program. I addressed this with the visiting students from Central Valley SD and how my career path has been carved out over the years. In addition, I shared the potential technology careers available to students at Questeq and the importance of giving back to our local communities and beyond.

It was a great experience to connect with students and give them the power to start thinking about their futures now rather than later.

You can read more about the speaker series by visiting the BCCTC website.

West Allegheny School District Participates in First Annual Christmas Card Design Contest

For our company Christmas card this year, we wanted to showcase the talented students and teachers that make-up our partner schools. Questeq selected the West Allegheny High School as our first showcase art department.  We worked with Dr. Jerri Lippert and Questeq’s Technology Director, Doug Costa, to implement the contest.

Several talented students submitted their artwork for the contest. Questeq’s corporate team was tasked with choosing the winning design to be featured for 2018. High school senior, Anne Marie Lusardi, was ultimately selected as the winner for her “Merry Sniffmas” design. For their participation, both Anne Marie and the art department received special recognition and a thank you gift from Questeq.

Congratulations to Anne Marie for winning our 1st annual design contest! We wish you much success as you continue to develop your talents!

We have already selected the partner school that will be participating with us in 2019 and look forward to seeing their creative designs.

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas from our Questeq family to yours!

Questeq and Cornell School District Simplify Password Management

This past summer our long-time partner school, Cornell School District, worked in collaboration with Infrastructure Services (NOC) on an exciting project. Chris Simpson, Infrastructure Engineer and Cody Thull, Technology Coordinator were tasked with seamlessly integrating the password reset and sync process for students, teachers and staff at Cornell. The school district was using Google Cloud for email and some applications. In addition, they also utilized Microsoft licensing for Office desktop applications. The problem was, that if a user changed their password on a school device, the change did not sync with Google. This project was the 1st of its kind for Infrastructure Services, so how did they make Google and Microsoft Azure work together?

In addition to the Microsoft Office Tools and Google Cloud, Office 365 and a password reset portal was implemented for users at Cornell. When a password is changed through the portal, it syncs down to Cornell’s on-premise server, changing their school login. From there, the password syncs with their on-premise Google server and then up to Google Cloud. This makes the password reset process simple, transparent and secure for all users. The addition of 2-factor authentication, for both Microsoft and Google, further enhances the system security.

With Office 365, students, teachers and staff have 5 Microsoft Office licenses that they can install at home or wherever their learning/working takes place. The ease of password syncing and anytime, anywhere access to educational tools, removes barriers to learning and productivity for teachers, staff and students.

“The addition of Office 365 gives students the opportunity to utilize these tools from any device they can get their hands on. Up until this point, passwords have been a nightmare. Our users already have to remember several passwords for the different systems we utilize, each with their own password complexity. Integrating Office 365, on-premise AD and Google was a core first step in simplifying passwords for our users. Of course, there will be more integration moving forward.” – Cody Thull, Technology Coordinator @ Cornell

Are you looking to accomplish more with your school technology initiatives? Contact us today!

Questeq Team Member Cycles for Good Cause

At Questeq, we believe in supporting our community, which includes our wonderful team members and partner schools. When Steve Leslie, one of our Technology Specialists at Aliquippa School District shared this opportunity to give back, we were excited to share with our customers, friends and family.

In November, Steve will be joining other cyclists for the 2018 72 Hours to Key West – 280 Mile Charity Bike Ride, which benefits the TinyHands Foundation. The foundation helps families in need during the holiday season by providing meals and gifts. This year the riders have also partnered with Starting Right, Now, to help end homelessness for youth through one-on-one mentoring and education.

The 72 Hours to Key West is a limited entry ride with around 70 riders each year. The ride itself is a 3-day event from Fort Meyers Florida to Key West. Day 1 is 120 miles, Day 2 is 105 miles and the final day is 55 miles.

Steve Leslie, 2nd from right at this year’s MS 150 ride.

If you are interested in learning more or donating to the ride, please visit the organization websites and donation page. Donations should be received by October 30, 2018.

TinyHands Foundation: http://www.tinyhandsfoundation.org

Starting Right, Now: http://startingrightnow.org

Donate: https://fundly.com/steve-leslie-2018-72-hours-to-key-west-280-mile-charity-bike-ride-new#home

We asked Steve how he got involved with these charities and why they are important to him. Here is what he had to say, “I started doing charity rides about 1998 when I did my first MS 150 ride which benefits Multiple Sclerosis research. I have also done the Tour de Cure ride for Diabetes several times. This coming summer will be my 10-time riding the MS 150 ride, which I have done each year since my brother-in-law was diagnosed. I am always looking for new and interesting rides, and this sounded like a great challenge for a great cause. We are really looking forward to having the chance to join the other riders in helping the families and children supported by this event.”