Dean Calvert’s knack for technology in the 90s led him from the chemistry lab to a computer lab, and to leading an IT company for the past 25 years.
With the aim of getting into the RAAF Dean (BSc ’92) applied for a science degree at Flinders University. But during his studies Dean discovered his love for computers and programming – an emerging industry in the early 1990s.
‘I had a particular knack for computers so some of the lecturers gave me side projects to work with new technology the Uni had purchased,’ says Dean. ‘This included some quite advanced technologies for the time.’
‘I had fun programming some of the computers to play music as they started up – quite an accomplishment as it was well before Microsoft Windows had hit the scene and it involved some low level coding. It brought a smile to both students and lecturers when they encountered it!’
At his ‘geekiest’, between studying for his final year exams, Dean taught himself how to program computers from books borrowed from the Flinders library.
After discovering his affinity with technology at Flinders, Dean’s first job out of university was providing IT support at a company that sold and supported computers, photocopiers and faxes to businesses.
Now, as founder and CEO of Calvert Technologies, Dean leads a team of specialists who provide IT and business services to a range of small businesses in South Australia and the Northern Territory. Driven by Dean’s passion to implement technology that can transform businesses, the organisation has now been running for 25 years.
‘It’s been such an incredible pleasure to work with businesses who have been struggling and get them to a point where they are so much more successful – this includes success with their people as well as finances.’
In 2004 Dean was awarded Microsoft’s Most Valued Professional award for his technical leadership and support contributions to the global business and technology community – an award he held until retiring from the program in late 2016. Calvert Technologies is the only South Australian company to be a multi-year finalist and winner of the prestigious Microsoft Australia Partner of the Year award (2011).
On reflection of his time at Flinders University Dean says, ‘I learnt new problem solving skills, including breaking a problem down and working through it logically and pragmatically. I learned critical thinking, logical process and how to take detailed complex notes – quickly and legibly!’