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Employee Spotlight - Christina Padron

Employee Spotlight - Christina Padron

Christina Padron

Director of Partnerships + Growth


Q: In one sentence, tell me what you do in your role.

A: As the director of partnership and growth, I’m primarily responsible for maintaining vendor and Air Force customer relationships, building new business partnerships, and identifying growth opportunities.


Q: What do you love about XR technology and why?

A: It’s going to revolutionize everything, just as the cellphone has. From a training perspective, the ability to be fully immersed and use the entire 3D space around you with relatively low cost hardware and software completely changes the training picture. You get unprecedented experiential learning in a completely scalable way. Especially in situations in which it's unsafe or very expensive to train, the magic of XR is that by doing the “reps and sets” in XR beforehand, by the time trainees get to live training scenarios, they’ll have far more experience and will reach proficiency faster.


Q: Who inspired you to choose this career path?

A: I’m an industrial engineer, with a specialty in human factors engineering, which I actually learned about in college at Purdue through a Women in Engineering session. They connected each of us with a female leader in the industry, and when she described her job, I knew in the first few minutes that's what I wanted to do. Human factors engineering is the perfect mix of psychology and engineering.


Q: What’s the coolest thing you’re working on right now?

A: That’s a tough one - but I’d have to say right now its the recruiting challenge. It’s been an incredible opportunity to begin to expand into more of a public-facing area, get really creative in applying XR to inspire the next generation of recruits, and have a deep impact on the future of USAF and Space Force.


Q: Early bird or night owl?

A: Early bird! 


Q: How do you start your day?

A: Coffee and exercise, whatever I can fit in. But mostly coffee.


Q: What energizes you?

A: Anything on or related to the beach - I love vacationing there with my family and taking walks with friends. I love to travel - we went on a cruise to Havana, Cuba a couple of years ago! I also love TV - currently enjoying Scandal and basically anything from Shonda Rhimes. One of my all-time favorites is Westworld. And I love to read science fiction - Robert Heinlein, Orson Scott Card, and Douglas E. Richards are some of my favorite authors.


Q: Best advice someone’s given you?

A: Perception is reality. And know your audience.


Q: First job?

A: High school - concession stand supervisor at Purdue, where my dad was a professor. I was the runner, did set up, tear down, clean up, all of it. I also worked in a Purdue bookstore for a while in high school.


Q: What’s one thing most people don’t know about you?

A: My dad is from Turkey. We did a huge family trip there in 2014, I can’t wait to go back once we can travel again!