Random Thoughts

My Path to a Cybersecurity Career: Master’s Degree, Here I Come

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Since I completed my Bachelor’s degree, I have been attempting to figure out which career path I want to take and focus on in the world of IT. Thankfully, my first job out of college allows me to dip my toes into several different areas, however, the phrase, “jack of all trades, master of none,” serves as a constant reminder that I need to decide on my next educational steps.

Coming from a military background, cybersecurity has always remained my top choice for obvious reasons. Plus, I might as well use the secret security clearance I gained in the Air Force. After about a year of researching rising trends and emerging technologies, I have finally begun to plot my attack on my next degree and certifications pertaining to cybersecurity. Before I pay for anything out of pocket, I am waiting on responses from my application to every form of military training program there is, such as the Cisco Veteran Cyber Scholarship, Onward to Opportunity (O2O), and Veteran Employment Through Technology Education Courses (VET TEC).

Below, is a rough draft of my current goals.

Bachelor’s Degree in Information Technology (Complete)

Obtain an Entry-Level IT Position (IT & E-commerce Specialist: Complete, List of Responsibilities Below)

  • IT design, implementation, and development
  • Network administration and security
  • Created IT Security Plan, Disaster Recovery Plan, Network Documentation, and Inventory List
  • Project Lead, Admin for CSM (Zendesk) and VoIP (8×8) Daily IT operations
  • Planning and constructing network equipment in multiple buildings
  • HTML, CSS, Java proficient
  • Creating, editing, and maintaining product listings on e-commerce channels (multiple company websites, eBay, Amazon, Volusion)
  • Product photography and research

Obtain a Managerial Role in IT Which Works with Security (IT Manager: Complete, List of Responsibilities Below)

  • Deploy and Monitor all IT systems including hardware, software, and telecom.
  • Perform regular system maintenance, backups, and updates.
  • Serve as a support contact for internal and end-user hardware and software challenges.
  • Act as a support liaison between internal, end-users, and third party software support teams.
  • Provide support and training for systems and networks.
  • Develop, implement, and coordinate system policies and procedures.
  • Advise on the most suitable IT choices and solutions.

Develop Web Dev, Coding, Cybersecurity Skills Through Creating Personal, Client Websites/Blogs (Complete)

Master’s Degree in Cybersecurity (In Progress) Applied to my top-choice school with more to follow. My remaining GI Bill payments will cover the first semester and during that time, I will apply to scholarships and programs to help pay for the rest. My current employer offers tuition reimbursement as well.

CompTIA Network+ Certification (In Progress)

CompTIA Security+ Certification (In Progress)

Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) (In Progress)

While there are several other certifications I would love to get at some point, I feel that the first two on my list should immediately be earned, while the CEH can be postponed. Eventually, I would love to become a penetration tester or network engineer, but the process to get there is riddled with hardships; but hey, it couldn’t be harder than the military, right?

 

 

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