Rowland School of Business

Faculty Member Helped 2015 Alumnus Launch His Information Technology Career

Friday, April 22, 2016

Pictured left to right are Point Park Part-Time Instructor David Syskowski and information technology alumnus Jonathan Grzandziel. | Photo by Chris Rolinson
When IT alumnus Jonathan Grzandziel, (pictured right), was a student, David Syskowski, M.S., School of Business part-time faculty member, connected him to PITT OHIO Express.

Meet Jonathan Grzandziel

Job title: Business Analyst for The Reliance Network
Employer: PITT OHIO Express
Degrees earned: Bachelor of Science in Information Technology, Point Park University, 2015; Associate of Science in Information Technology Support, Community College of Allegheny County, 2013
Hometown: Stanton Heights neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Pa.
High school: Central Catholic High School
Now living in: Baldwin, Pa.
LinkedIn: Jonathan Grzandziel 

"My Point Park classes have taught me how to adapt to evolving environments by encouraging me to think outside the box and project ahead, all while expressing myself through my work."

-- Jonathan Grzandziel


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Why did you decide to transfer to Point Park to earn your bachelor’s degree in IT?

Being able to take my classes on Saturday was the main reason I chose to transfer to Point Park. Although challenging, this schedule gave me the ability to continue my education without affecting my personal life.

Tell us about how you landed your current position as a business analyst for PITT OHIO. 

It initially began with my very first class at Point Park, where Dave Syskowski was the professor. At the time, I was having trouble finding an entry-level IT position and I was beginning to feel tapped out. After a couple casual conversations with Dave, I decided to ask him for some advice on how to land an entry-level IT position.

Without hesitation, Dave asked for my contact information and told me he would reach out to a few of his contacts to see if anything was available. Shortly after that, I received an email from Dave informing me of an open position at PITT OHIO that he felt would offer a great start to my IT career. I immediately applied and waited for a response. It wasn’t long before I was asked to come in for an interview, which was one of the best interview experiences I ever had. Before I knew it, I was offered the job, which became the prelude to my IT career. 

Describe the work you do and how your Point Park classes have helped you.

My current position at PITT OHIO consists of multiple responsibilities to help maintain the current and historical data that make up The Reliance Network, otherwise known as TRNet. I also interact with various analysts, developers and specialists to ensure projects are meeting deadlines and to resolve any issues in a timely manner.

My Point Park classes have taught me how to adapt to evolving environments by encouraging me to think outside the box and project ahead, all while expressing myself through my work. I apply these skills to my job on a daily basis.

What were your favorite experiences at Point Park?

My most memorable experiences at Point Park were meeting people who shared similar career goals, walking around Downtown Pittsburgh to find a place to eat lunch and talking to my professors about everything from IT-related topics to family life.

What are your career goals?

My short-term career goals consist of enhancing my technical skills and learning as much as I can from my superiors as I gain more opportunities to apply what I learned in class to real-world situations. As for my long-term career goals, I’d like to break into the cyber security industry and continue my education, eventually obtaining both a master’s degree and Ph.D. in my career field.  

What advice do you have for our information technology majors?

The time you spend studying, doing homework, interacting with your professors and building relationships with your fellow classmates will set the tone for how you’ll carry yourself in the workplace. Establish that strong work ethic now and everything else will fall into place.

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