Meet Laura Proctor, Education Development Manager
Women of PTC University,ThingWorx | 5 Minute Read
Laura Proctor, Education Development Manager, is another shining star in PTC University
PTC University is proud to support a diverse and inclusive workforce. We aim to lift up our brilliant female leaders who are true change makers in our organization. We are lucky to employ some of the best talent in the industry. They are engineers, sales managers, instructors and everything in between. We are privileged to introduce them to you and highlight their impressive accomplishments. Meet the women of PTCU!
Laura Proctor, Education Development Manager, is another shining star in PTC University leading the Instructional Design and Development team to spearhead content creation for IoT (ThingWorx and Kepware) and PLM (Windchill) curriculums. A graduate of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Laura holds master’s degrees in both mechanical engineering and computation for design and optimization. We spent some time talking with Laura about her experience as a woman working in a technology-driven field – keep reading to hear her thoughts on women in the industry.
What got you first interested in a career in technology?
I always loved math and technology ever since I was young. I remember programming computers with code I found in the back of children’s magazines. When I was 10, I was always tracking down specialty math problems that explained how to use math in an applied way. I loved the challenges and the real-world scenarios they provided. Math to me was fun and logical. I was lucky to get into a special summer program that fed that love of math and encouraged me to foster that passion. At age 12, I took electronics and shop and loved those classes. But, at that age where fitting in matters so much, I didn’t want to be the only girl in the program, so I never took it again.
As a manager, do you notice added pressure to be effective yet still be likeable? Do you think women still have to do that balancing act at work?
I do. As a midwestern woman specifically, I’ve been socialized to always be friendly. As women, the message often is you must be likeable - which can make it hard when you need to switch gears to command authority. That’s something I continue to work on. On the flip side, I think women are exceptional around interactive leadership which involves building supportive environments, sharing power and information, and fostering feelings of self-worth among their colleagues.
Why do you think, still in the 21st century, there aren’t more women in the tech space?
It’s still a challenge today but any time you throw more diversity at a problem, you ALWAYS get better solutions. That’s any problem anywhere. Diversity of experience and thinking brings critical scope. I think having more women in STEM would lead to more collaboration and better solutions. Fostering growth mindsets in both school and work is critical too, especially for women who may be fighting biases. True leadership values inclusion and we’ve made progress, but we’re not quite there yet.
What is it about PTC University that allows you to thrive here?
I work with an incredible team of really smart people. A lot of them women. I love the transformation and approach we’re taking on content creation. Our new VILT offerings are engaging, innovative, and really cutting edge. I’m proud of the content that we’ve made. Specifically, the Kepware content has been a huge success. The net promoter scores are high which means we’re securing the loyalty of our customers by delivering best-in-class training.
It’s no joke that your schedule is demanding. How do you support a work life balance?
It’s true that I am absolutely a workaholic. But that’s only because I really love my work. That being said, my daughter is truly my number one priority in life. Every day I carve out hours to ensure she’s getting the best parts of me. Sometimes this means I’m up late at night answering emails and hunting down solutions to work problems. But these years when she is young cannot be replaced. PTC University has allowed me to be successful both as a professional and as a parent. And for that, I am grateful.
Interested to know more about the educational offerings that Laura and her talented team are working on?
Check out PTC University’s latest ThingWorx training opportunities and enroll in your own class today!