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Staff Spotlight: Rosie Coffey

In conversation with Rosie Coffey, Head of Enterprise Solutions, IT Services.

2 minute read
14 Dec 2022

Rosie, what is standard working day for you? 

Today I started the morning with an extra early meeting with colleagues from Australia, New Zealand, and the UK.  We have been collaborating on exciting work through our respective Higher Education Enterprise Architecture SIG’s, and it’s a monthly meeting that is very warm and I always find inspiring.  A more typical day I will spend catching up with the team, business stakeholders and other groups across IT Services.  My favourite food to fuel myself on campus is the turkey club from Elements, and my favourite spot to chill is the old-world vibe in the Staff Common Room.  Walking over the Cavanagh Bridge I sometimes pause to take in the surroundings of such a beautiful campus.  

Tell us about your journey to UCC?    

I always gravitated towards challenging problems. During my Erasmus year in Germany I sought out the Computer Science department and took a Pascal Programming module, the only female and youngest by at least 3 years. I also took up Italian, through German! During my time in Pepsi, I worked within the DBA team and eventually with the Global Enterprise Architecture team. I never took the easy route professionally and with that gained a wealth of experience on an SAP implementation project, that allowed me encounter different cultures from remote cities in China to quaint towns in Mexico and Uruguay. Moving to the HE sector in 2014 I took on the first IT Security role in UCC, before spending a few years in UL establishing the EA practice. I was delighted to have the opportunity to return to UCC earlier this year at an exciting time in the execution of the Digital Master Plan.   

We know you are involved in diversity projects, tell us something about your passion projects 

Too often in my career I have been the only female in the room, and therefore it was natural that over time I would get involved in initiatives to encourage more young female participation in STEM. One of the more recent projects was the formation of a National Cyber Security Awareness Task Force, who came together to tackle the growing problem of the role of technology in gender-based crime. This is a type of online harm such as image-based abuse, impersonation, or harassment.  The Task Force have partnered with Safe Ireland, an umbrella organisation for domestic violence support services, and have delivered some key supports to date for example a safety booklet and a billboard awareness campaign across Cork city. UCC is playing a key role in this project with the development of a Digital Badge to help people identify and respond to Technology Facilitated Abuse 

Image: #RedFlagsAreAbuse billboard and the National Cyber Security Awareness Task Force team. Rosie Coffey pictured 4th from the left.

Who is your greatest influence?   

I have many people who I admire and who I have been lucky to have as mentors at different stages of my career.  But I have to say personally, my father has been the real active influence though-out my life.  From someone who left school at 13, he was always passionate about encouraging education. He himself returned to education through an access programme when he retired and went on to get his degree and post grad late in life.  He practiced what he preached. Now my working in UCC has allowed us to form a new bond, with common relatable experiences which stimulates great conversations and is very special.  


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