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What Do Wichita, the Tech Industry and a Cat Named Oreo Have in Common?

Written by Sara Anstey

Growing up in Michigan, I always wanted to move to California to pursue a career in technology and live by the beach and palm trees. After living in Silicon Valley working for Apple and living in Santa Barbara working for cybersecurity firm Novacoast, I decided to move to Wichita to help open a new Novacoast location.  

Moving from California back to the Midwest was never something I saw myself doing – many of my friends and family were surprised by my decision. I decided to try it out for two reasons: first, I was only going to be temporarily relocating here for six months, and two, California never felt like home to me – I always felt like I didn’t belong. I had romanticized the idea of living in California for so long that the reality fell very short of what I really wanted. While the weather was nice, the cost of living and professional opportunities made living there tough and competitive.

Since arriving in Wichita, I’ve been blown away by the welcoming reception and sense of community both myself and Novacoast have received. I immediately felt at home here as local businesses and organizations went out of their way to help me and Novacoast thrive in our new office. The culture at Novacoast is unparalleled to any other company I’ve seen – we are truly a company of smart, helpful and kind people. (My cat, Oreo, loves them too. He's quickly become the office mascot.) The Wichita community reflects these values and allows us to thrive as a cybersecurity company in an area that is not traditionally thought of as a cybersecurity hub.

I immediately felt at home here. –Sara Anstey

Being a part of a tech company like Novacoast in a place like Wichita allows me to get exposed to projects and industries I wouldn’t have been able to learn about in a bigger place like California. Every company is incredibly involved with each other and the community here, which has allowed me to learn from other corporations and launch initiatives like joining the Wichita Regional Chamber of Commerce or helping develop curricula for local colleges. In Wichita, I feel like I have the chance to affect change and that my ideas and opinions are heard and properly communicated.

I always felt like I belonged at Novacoast. I’m proud of the top-tier work we do for some of the world’s largest companies and thankful for the work I get exposed to. Being in Wichita, I finally feel like I belong where I live.


I knew I’d be in for a change when I moved to Wichita from Dallas for a summer internship. I had no friends or family in the area and zero idea of how I was going to meet people and find things to do. I was welcomed with open arms to a city full of unique restaurants, events and ways to get involved. By the end of the summer, I realized it’s a big city with a community vibe.

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