Joy Hintz' blog post "Awesome Admin Success: Transition into the Ecosystem."

Awesome Admin Success: How I Transitioned from Teaching to Working in Technology


I’m not a ‘techie.’ My degree is in early childhood education. Sharing my passion for learning, seeing students master new skills, solving problems, and being part of a team that makes a difference were some of the amazing parts of being an early childhood educator. Despite all this, a few years ago, I knew I had to change careers. What could I do that would not only include the best parts of my current career but also allow me to really grow?

Gaining new skills

Salesforce, Salesforce, Salesforce. Sometimes, it seemed that was all my good friend (and Salesforce MVP), Leyna Hoffer, would talk about. She insisted that many of the things I loved and excelled at could be channeled into a Salesforce career. At first, I wasn’t all that interested—until she started to talk about Trailhead. Then, one Saturday morning in October, I created my Trailhead account. Twelve hours later, I was still on Trailhead! To say I was hooked is quite an understatement! The perpetual student in me was thrilled about a platform where I could always be learning and gaining new skills. Trailhead was a game changer for me, and where I first truly began to see a future for myself in the Salesforce ecosystem.

Finding your perfect role

With the goal of becoming a Certified Salesforce Admin in mind, I settled in to learn all that I could. I also needed to take stock in my overall career and consider what my first Salesforce ‘dream’ role might look like. Helping people solve problems, working with a team, and learning and growing were all important. Could I also incorporate teaching? That seemed like too much to hope for. Besides, I needed to be seen as a Salesforce Admin, not a teacher.

Staying positive and motivated

Changing careers (especially later in life) isn’t easy. I knew it was going to take focus and a lot of hard work. Luckily, Salesforce has an incredible amount of resources. I took the Salesforce Essentials for New Admins course, earned the Admin Super Set of superbadges, became a Trailhead Ranger, and completed the PepUp Tech Admin and SMB Essentials Advisor cohort. I embraced the Trailblazer Community by joining the Twin Cities User Group and Women in Tech. I was thrilled to be assigned an incredible mentor through the Trailblazer Mentorship Program, Salesforce MVP Michelle Hansen, who spent hours helping me with my resume. Volunteering and a summer internship added to my experience.

Still, there were times when it was hard to stay motivated. The pandemic stopped my struggling job search in its tracks. It was hard to stay positive, to believe that I could reach my goal. There were so many “overnight success” stories out there. Why wasn’t it happening for me? But my fellow Trailblazers were always there, cheering me on.

Making your own luck

There’s a famous saying that goes, “Luck is when preparation meets opportunity.” It took more than two years, countless hours on Trailhead, and an amazing community, but nine months ago I landed my first dream job as a Jr. Admin at Perforce Software. I’m part of a team, solving problems that help our customers, and I’ve found a company that supports me as I grow my Salesforce career. Last month, with the assistance of the amazing HBCUforce Study cohort, I passed my Admin Certification Exam. It wasn’t easy and took longer than I had hoped, but I’m thrilled to be part of the Salesforce ecosystem. I look forward to many incredible years ahead, and I encourage aspiring #AwesomeAdmins to keep learning as much as you can.


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