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    Airman finds stability in communications

    Airman finds stability in communications

    Photo By Tech. Sgt. Brandy Burke | U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Carissa Sakahara, a client systems technician with the...... read more read more



    Story by Staff Sgt. Brandy Burke 

    120th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

    MONTANA AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Mont. – When Airmen return to Montana Air National Guard Base for monthly drill, it's common to have various computer issues. They restart, get frustrated, gather themselves and make their way to the computer experts to try and fix the problem.

    Senior Airman Carissa Sakahara, a client systems technician with the 120th Airlift Wing Communications flight, greets them at the help desk . Her desk is usually covered in cellphones and computers that need fixing so Airmen can get back to completing the mission.

    “I like helping people. If I can help them, I want to,” said Sakahara with a smile. “It’s hard to deal with customers when they get really upset and frustrated, because they don’t understand it’s not always comm’s fault. But we try our best to find the best solution to help them.”

    Growing up, she never saw herself in the military.

    “I wanted to be a dermatologist … that was always something I thought was so cool,” she said.

    But in 2016 she chose to pursue a military job in communications.

    She said, "[I thought], ‘What could transfer into the civilian world well?’ In my mind I was like, ‘I know a lot about [computers]. I’ll be fine. I know comm stuff.’ But I didn’t know a thing about comm. Boy was I so wrong.”

    After Sakahara finished her communications technical training, she was pondering her future. As a traditional Guardsman, she would only be working one weekend a month with the hope of going to college. While she was figuring out her next step, she picked up a full-time position with the 120AW Communications Flight.

    “It’s pretty easy now. I get everything. I’ve learned,” she explained. “I think I’ll stay here for a while, but I do want to go outside and branch off. I think it’d be so cool to work for Google ...; but, you got to get there first and this is really good to put on your resume.

    “I could make a career out of [the military] and retire with good benefits so I could be stable,” she continued. “For me, stability is a big thing. I need to have a plan and this job has given me a plan. I can figure out what I’m going to do with my life revolving around this.”

    Sakahara has all the training she needs to do her job, but if she could add one more thing to her toolbox, it would be an ethical hacking certification.

    “I hope [I] can get that,” she said. “It’s more on the side of defending against hacking … it’s like we’re finding any point that someone could break in [to our networks] and fixing that.”

    Her goal is to earn the certification and add it to her resume.

    “If I can go become a really good IT technician or IT hacker; if I can learn these good skills and take it to the civilian world and have great on-the-job training, it’s going to help [me be more marketable to the civilian sector].”



    Date Taken: 02.12.2020
    Date Posted: 02.18.2020 09:49
    Story ID: 363295
    Location: GREAT FALLS, MT, US 

    Web Views: 31
    Downloads: 0