When Systems Engineering (SE) representatives are not spending time enhancing client networks, many are involved with the community by donating time, money, and/or resources to those in need. As an organization, SE recently became involved with the Travis Mills Foundation to not only honor its very own veterans, but to help those who reach out to the Foundation for assistance.
To provide some awareness as to why SE has chosen this foundation, I asked SE President, Matt McGrath, and Infrastructure Team Manager, Jerry Lyon, some more specific questions. This is how they responded.
Why has Systems Engineering become involved with raising funds for the Travis Mills Foundation?
- Matt: Systems Engineering is proud to partner with the Travis Mills Foundation. The culture of our organizations are really well aligned and we feel strongly that supporting our veterans and recognizing the sacrifice our veterans have made for this country is the least we can do. As an employer, we put a lot of focus on creating opportunities for veterans, so partnering with the Travis Mills Foundation is a natural fit.
- Jerry: Systems Engineering has a long history of reaching out to the community with philanthropic efforts that align with our internal culture. With many veterans being employed by SE, this made sense.
How many veterans do we employ at Systems Engineering?
- Jerry: Systems Engineering currently employs 16 veterans. Those who are veterans hold varying positions within the organization ranging from Operations to Engineering, Help Desk to Shipping and Receiving, and Senior Management.
What types of ‘in-kind’ donations has Systems Engineering made to the Travis Mills Foundation?
- Matt: Systems Engineering has worked with the Foundation in many different ways. We have donated time to assist veteran families with travel to/from the Foundation's retreats. During a recent retreat, we donated laptops, engineering time, and IT guidance. In addition, a partner of ours was kind enough to donate a play set for the children of veteran families to utilize.
How and why would you like clients, partners, and friends to contribute to the Travis Mills Foundation?
- Jerry: To SE, the Foundation is founded on an underlying set of principles and goals that we feel everyone can connect with personally, whether associated as a Veteran or not. These goals are about overcoming unexpected adversity, providing support, and setting an environment for healing. The Travis Mills Foundation is unique in its approach to provide veterans and their families with an experience that says they're not alone post trauma. It's not just about veteran-to-veteran, it's also about family-to-family. Providing time, donations, and support to a place that promotes this type of atmosphere is critical.
What are some upcoming events that Systems Engineering is taking part in to help raise funds?
- Matt: We have a team of individuals taking part in the Travis Mills "Miles for Mills" 5K run on Memorial Day in Augusta, Maine. Employees who are participating are raising funds to help support the Foundation.
- Jerry: We are also hosting three 'Jeans Fridays.' For employees to wear jeans instead of the normal 'business casual' attire, each is asked to contribute money towards the Travis Mills Foundation. After these 'Jeans Days' take place, we hope to be able to hand over a nice contribution to the Foundation.
If there’s one thing that you’d want to highlight to others about the Travis Mills Foundation, what would that be?
- Jerry: Beyond what the Foundation does for existing veterans with the retreats, the real highlight is Travis himself. Understanding what he has built by overcoming his own trauma and by carrying himself with composure, without sorrow, and with an incredible sense of humor highlights what's possible if you focus on positive outcomes.
To donate to the Travis Mills Foundation, click here.
Matt McGrath became the third person to hold the title of President in SE’s 30-year history. Prior to joining SE, Matt spent 13 years at WEX, Inc. holding a variety of positions including leading the CRM application practice, managing the Project Management Office, managing the New Zealand development arm at the company, and ultimately software development for the Americas.
Jerry Lyon, Infrastructure Team Manager, manages a team of engineers with expertise in the design and implementation of Infrastructure technologies including best-of-breed wireless, Next Generation security, routing, switching, network load balancing, WAAS, Video Conferencing, Collaboration, Cloud Infrastructure, and Unified Communications.