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Steven Mayer: Alumnus lands jobs with Cray, SGI, and Lockheed Martin

Steven MayerCVTC degrees have landed Steven Mayer jobs with several well-known companies, including work relating to the U.S. Navy’s Anti-Terrorism/Force Protection (ATFP) program.

Veteran’s benefits made it possible for Steve to receive a degree in Industrial Electronics in December 1979 and a second degree in Supervisory Management in December 1988.

My top memory of my education is my favorite instructor, Dwight Strong,” Steve says. “He taught the practical aspects of electronics, such as how to perform tests on circuitry. He expected excellence in our lab reports and always made himself available to provide guidance and answer questions. For those needing additional help, Dwight was there.”

Steve’s new career began even before he earned his first degree. While in his third semester at CVTC (then District One), he was chosen for a position in the module test department at Cray Research Inc. in Chippewa Falls. When the department expanded, he became supervisor.

Steve held three subsequent positions at Cray. During that time, Silicon Graphics Inc. (SGI) purchased Cray. “The highlight of this transition was that SGI brought the Beach Boys to Chippewa Falls to perform for their newly acquired Cray employees. Wow!” Steve vividly recalls.

In 1998 Steve became a field engineer, supporting SGI systems at Los Alamos National Laboratories in New Mexico, and hardware team leader. In 2001 he moved to Rio Rancho, New Mexico, to support SGI systems outside Los Alamos National Laboratories. SGI’s financial difficulties led to layoffs that included Steve in 2003 after he had worked for Cray/SGI for almost 24 years.

“I was exceptionally fortunate to find employment with Lockheed Martin at Kirtland AFB in Albuquerque as a project engineer,” Steve says. He started as part of an information technology (IT) team supporting the U.S. Air Force modeling and simulation facility on Kirtland Air Force Base, later becoming a team leader of the networking and engineering group and operations manager of the IT group.

“The five years spent with Lockheed Martin supporting the U.S. Air Force’s modeling and simulation facility at Kirtland AFB was the highlight of my career. It was very challenging but equally rewarding.”

A yearning to return to Wisconsin and be near grandchildren led to Steve’s transfer to Lockheed Martin’s new Anti-Terrorism/Force Protection (ATFP) program, which specialized in operations centers for the U.S. Navy. He and his wife moved to Roberts, Wisconsin, from where he supported the design and installation of Navy Operations Centers in Tennessee, Indiana, and Hawaii.

When work subsided, Steve left Lockheed Martin. Since then he has worked for Real Estate, tax preparation, package delivery, and manufacturing firms. 

 “I am convinced my two degrees from CVTC have been the cornerstone for my successes. A technical degree coupled with a management degree allowed me to compete for both technical and leadership jobs.”