Laura Quintana

Vice President and General Manager

Cisco Networking Academy

Laura Quintana is Vice President and General Manager of Networking Academy, Cisco’s largest and longest-running Corporate Social Responsibility program. As an innovator, Laura focuses on social responsibility, delivering groundbreaking initiatives that prepare students to participate in the digital workforce and connects them with career opportunities. Her strengths in scaling and accelerating impact helped her and her team grow the Networking Academy to benefit more than 3.7 million students in FY23 (20.5 million since inception) throughout 190 countries with an annual in-kind contribution valued at over $387 million USD. Her leadership at Networking Academy is an extension of her work as a change agent. She cares deeply about diversity and making an impact on peoples’ lives and communities. Her focus includes initiatives targeting educational institutions, economically underserved communities, women and minorities underrepresented in tech, people with disabilities, and justice-impacted individuals. Laura and her team are further expanding Networking Academy’s reach with SkillsforAll.com, a mobile first, self-paced, and gamified experience available direct to learner and via academies. Through her leadership, Networking Academy has become a critical part of country digital readiness, working with ministries of education to further national digital agendas and develop the human capital necessary to support country transformation. Previously, Laura successfully completed Cisco’s multi-year commitment to the Jordan Healthcare Initiative. She strategically collaborated with the Government of Jordan and was instrumental in driving telemedicine, clinical collaboration, and teleradiology projects that enabled quality healthcare services and benefited over 175,000 patients. Previously, Laura held a variety of director-level roles within Cisco’s services organization. Before joining Cisco, Laura served in leadership positions for eleven years with Hewlett-Packard within Product Management and Operations, including a three-year assignment in Grenoble, France. Laura holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Engineering from Stanford University. She is an executive sponsor of Conexión, Cisco’s Latinx employee resource organization. She serves as a member of the SER National Board of Directors, Cristo Rey San Jose High School Corporate Work Study Program Board of Directors, San Jose State University Technology Program Industry Advisory Board, Association for Information Systems Industry Advisory Board, and Love Never Fails Advisory Board. Laura was recognized by the Hispanic IT Executive Council (HITEC) as one of the top 100 most influential and notable Hispanic Professionals in the Information Technology Industry, receiving HITEC Top 100 awards for 2016-2017, 2017-2018, and 2021-2022. She was recognized by Latino Leaders Magazine as one of the 100 most influential Latinas in 2021. She is fluent in Spanish and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband where they raised their three children.


April 12, 2024


Calling All Past Alumni to Test their Strength and Compete

2 min read

Join the competition of a lifetime on May 2, 2023. Where alumni who had the spark to train can compete on the grandest stage of all: the Cisco-Athlon.

Are you AI-Ready? Cisco Networking Academy is closing the gender gap in AI

4 min read

Join us for Women Rock-IT on April 25. Start exploring how you can use AI for an AI-fueled career boost. Hear from real-time innovators and leaders in their fields. Ask your questions and access free entry-level courses from Cisco Networking Academy to get started right away.

January 24, 2024


Have you ever been inspired by a teacher?

4 min read

Cisco Networking Academy's 29,700 instructors are dedicated to inspiring learners with IT and digital skills education. Which NetAcad Instructor inspired you? #TagATeacher on International Day of Education

November 30, 2023


Sharing the Cisco Networking Academy Vision

3 min read

Cisco Networking Academy works with partners who specialize in providing education for people with disabilities to develop IT skills, powering an inclusive future for all.

November 9, 2023


Cisco Networking Academy helps veterans with career transition programs

4 min read

Whether you call it Veterans Day, Remembrance Day or Armistice Day, November 11 is when we pause to give thanks to those who serve. At Cisco Networking Academy, we reflect on what we can do in return.

October 16, 2023


Hack Your Way to a New Career in Cybersecurity: Cisco Networking Academy offers new Ethical Hacker course

5 min read

Cisco Networking Academy is launching a new Ethical Hacker course as part of its commitment to closing the cybersecurity skills shortage by training hundreds of thousands of people around the world.

September 14, 2023


Bridging the Skills-to-Jobs Gap with a Learning Continuum Approach

2 min read

National Online Learning Day is a time to celebrate the latest iterations of educational technology. At Cisco, Skills For All and Cisco U. are making tech learning more accessible than ever before, with a learning continuum that bridges the gap and guides aspiring and current IT professionals to reach their career and certification goals.

Cisco Networking Academy fostering founders, one learner at a time

3 min read

Cisco's Networking Academy trains students in digital skills, but also fosters skills crucial for entrepreneurs.

Networking Academy Alums Prove Anything Is Possible

1 min read

We are excited to announce the finalists for the Cisco Networking Academy Alumni Awards.