Happy National Techie Day: Springfield business and organizations evolve to keep up with technology demands

SPRINGFIELD, Mo.-- A Springfield home security company knew it needed employees who can stay up to speed with technology. In doing so, it would help stay one step ahead of criminals. Atlas Security has been in Springfield since 1962. With technology changing every day, the company had to keep up.

Atlas Security no longer focuses on simple intruder alerts. Now, it's an entire home security system due to the progression of technology in the security industry. Atlas consultant, Tyler Hammerschmidt said the tools and resources they offer are smaller, faster, and better. Those tools allowed Atlas Security to combine features for safety, security, and proficiency.

"Now it's a combination of intrusion detection, fire detection, home automation, video surveillance," explained Hammerschmidt. "Instead of all those being independent, we bring them all together into one platform. That's required our technicians to become multifaceted, and they have to learn and evolve as technology evolves constantly."

Springfield Public Schools is also helping technicians evolve. Through a program that encourages young adults to get into a wide range of courses, leading to many different careers called GO CAPS ( Greater Ozarks Centers for Advanced Professional Studies.)

Aspiring technician and Central High School Student Liatris Parker- Reece, said she feels comfortable working on computers to solve technology and engineering problems. However, that wasn't always the case.

Parker-Reece thought she was too young, and the subject was going to be too hard. Nevertheless, after a few engineering and tech classes later, she joined GO CAPS, and her perspective changed.

"Age doesn't mean that you can't learn it now, or that you can't get started," said Parker Reece. "Just taking that first class is just the first step to where you want to go."

GO CAPS, Software and IT instructor Kym Nelm's program offers a range of courses, leading to many different careers.

"STEM is so important, It pervades almost every industry here in the community from fast food to manufacturing to health care," Explained Nelms.

That's why students in the program work closely with local businesses. Students get an in-depth and tangible experience in their desired fields of study. Through job shadowing and mentoring, Nelms said she believes the workforce is heading in the STEM direction.

While there is no doubt that technology is continuously evolving-- Nelms said her goal is to help her techies follow their passions. Instead of being intimidated by them.

"I am so grateful to them for following their passion and going into something that might not have been a big job to them, but it's highly sought after," said Nelms.