Mike S.

IT Project Lead, Unified Communications — ISC Technology Services
Portrait photo of Mike S.

ISC service(s) or programs/projects:  Service Manager for Zoom, Panopto, 3Play Media, and UPenn-IT Slack services.  

Length of time in ISC:  Joined ISC in 2021 and Penn in 2008

Previous work experience:  13 years at Wharton IT (Classroom Technology), prior to that, eight years at University of Delaware as a technician for live and recorded performance events.

Tell us about a challenge at Penn that made you proud to be part of ISC.

The camaraderie has made me proudest. The way everyone seems to work as a team is terrific. I’m definitely glad I joined this outfit! Everyone has been welcoming and warm and wonderful. I haven’t met anybody who hasn’t gone out of their way to be helpful to me and to clients.

What’s an interesting technical or business problem you’ve faced with ISC?

My first support ticket – on an obscure Zoom configuration issue – was a  challenge I’d never encountered before. When I solved it, the client called me a genius! That was a real boost to my confidence in the new position.

What do you like best about working with clients?

I like the challenge — solving a puzzle, something they couldn’t figure out on their own. I like being a source of comfort for them. When they see me coming, they know they can relax and everything will be okay.

How has the pandemic changed the way you approach your role?

It has created an entirely new career path for me. I wouldn’t even have applied for a job managing video conferencing prior to the pandemic. I don’t look at the pandemic as a good thing, but it’s expanded my career.

What are you passionate about in your free time?

Music! I’m a drummer. I also edit music for performance groups — ice skaters, dancers, anybody who performs to a recorded soundtrack. They come to me with music cues, and I cut it together to the timing they need, with whatever sound effects or voiceover that’s required to produce a soundtrack for them. Any kind of music makes me happy.

What would you like people at Penn to know about you?

I’ve designed my own board game. I love board games — I must have upwards of 50! I had bought several from Kickstarter and I thought, ‘I can do this.’ So I went down into my basement and designed one. I mostly give it out to friends and family who enjoy playing it.