Meet David Highsmith: ITS Manager of Network Operations

Monday, January 29, 2024
About David: David is a seasoned professional with an impressive 36 years at the University. For 33 of those years, David has worked in Network Support, where his role has evolved in tandem with the University's expanding network. He has been deeply involved in the NGN project from its planning stages, bringing a wealth of institutional knowledge and experience to the project. Adapting to constant technological changes, David sees every challenge as an opportunity and attributes his success in the evolving field to his many years of experience.  
Journey with NGN: David's journey with NGN is marked by a commitment to navigating the complexities of cutting-edge technology. His background in Network Support has prepared him well for his dynamic role on the NGN team. His team, responsible for logistical support, manages everything from scheduling hardware installations to troubleshooting issues and providing client support. The project has introduced David and his team to a variety of specialty equipment owned by clients, ranging from microscopes to research monitoring devices and building automation systems. David must learn the unique functionality of each device to ensure a successful migration to the new network. Completing these migrations not only adds to the team's knowledge but also stands as a testament to their capability in handling diverse challenges. David emphasizes the importance of patience and an open mind for anyone embarking on the NGN journey. The monumental undertaking requires a team effort, and David encourages new members to be ready to roll up their sleeves and pitch in where needed. 
Technological Innovation: David envisions NGN as a transformative force, providing a more stable and proactive environment for Yale once the project reaches completion. The new technology promises quicker issue resolution and a heightened ability to prevent problems, ensuring a network that the Yale community can rely on. 
Proud Achievements: David takes pride in the comprehensive involvement of his team in every aspect of the NGN project. Their support, information-sharing, and training efforts have been instrumental in empowering other staff members involved in the project. This proactive approach has not only spread knowledge but has also contributed to a smoother and more efficient migration process. 
Beyond the Office: Beyond his professional responsibilities, David's interests lean towards athletics and a passion for traveling the world. While he admires classic cars, the high costs associated with the hobby keep him as just a spectator. His favorites include modern jazz, thought-provoking movies, and, as a long time New Haven resident, pizza. You may not know that David once won a national magazine contest! 
Favorite Campus Spot: Central Campus holds a special place in David's heart, offering a serene environment to appreciate the university's architectural beauty.