Richard Horne’s always had an interest in computers but, by his own admission, he wasn’t great at school, “I had pretty average grades.”
However, he was determined to follow his passion and soon realised the interactive teaching style at Otago Polytechnic suited him.
“I found something I was interested in and that was it, I was sold.” He shyly explains that nearly all of his grades were A’s and A pluses.
Initially, Richard studied a Certificate in IT Service and Support. From that he got a job at a help desk. But he found that he just wanted to keep learning, so returned to Otago Polytechnic to study for a Bachelor of Information Technology.
“The best thing was my lecturer really enjoyed teaching. That takes learning to the next level”
Richard shines at programming, and was chosen to help develop open source gaze control software – a programme where users can operate a Windows computer using only their eyes.
“It was amazing what we could do with off-the-shelf technology. We hacked it to make it useful and effective - to make people’s lives better.”
Richard graduated in November 2016, then promptly got a job with the Dunedin City Council in the role of Application Support Analyst Developer.
Richard’s boss, Helen Hanson, says Richard’s doing a great job. “In his first weeks of working here, he was already giving real benefit to departments” she says.
Richard Horne’s always had an interest in computers. Now, thanks to his studies and determination, he’s forging a successful career in IT.
Read more about the Gaze Control Software: https://accessibilitysoftwarehub.github.io/
Read more about the Bachelor of Information Technology.