Black Hat + Veterans

Posted by Kathleen Smith

Black Hat 2014 with Matt DevostFor some time now we have been saying the information security workforce shortage could be solved if we encouraged more veterans to transition into this field. Veterans have the key skills and experience that all information security or cybersecurity companies are looking for.

Last year, Matthew Devost, CEO of FusionX, sent out a social media post about setting up a scholarship program for transitioning veterans to attend Black Hat for training, mentorship and networking. Two lucky veterans, Ryan and Matt were able to attend the conference with Matt, attending training sessions and networking with other IT professionals.

From last year’s two attendees:

“Black Hat was an amazing experience, I got to network with the best minds in the IT security career field. I enjoyed how much they took time to talk with a transitioning veteran and provide mentorship and guidance in how to get into the IT Security field. Black Hat gave me an inside look into the leading technology and discuss current issues that many companies face in the cyber security realm. I got a better understanding on how cybersecurity is becoming a major concern for many and the urgency needed to become more secure.”  – Ryan

“Joining Matt Devost and FusionX at Blackhat was one of the most beneficial experiences I have had during my transition from military service. It fully supported my transition by providing me real world examples to understand the aspects of the Cyber Security and the people within it. Networking, technical discussions, and career direction were the big things that I came back with during my time on this trip. Talking to people the about common interest propels the conversation to interesting levels and helped make contacts that eventually led to a new and more advanced job, consulting in Cyber Security. Lastly, I saw the culture of the community and how engaging and positive everyone was to mentor and welcome veterans in to Cyber Security. People were excited to have us there and demonstrated it with advice and business cards for further contact. This was a one-of-a-kind experience to learn and grow in not only Cyber Security but as a professional. Words can’t really express how amazing and beneficial of a trip this was.” – Matt

Attend Black Hat 2015

We are happy to share that this program has been formalized and Black Hat will be providing two passes for transitioning veterans to attend Black Hat in Las Vegas, August 1-6, 2015. Matt Devost will be coordinating the selection process as well as serve as a coordinator and mentor for their activity at the event.

Interested applicants email Matt at [email protected]. The program is looking for veterans that have transitioned in the past 12 months or will be transitioning in the next 12 months that have an interest in the information security field.


This entry was posted on Tuesday, June 02, 2015 3:38 pm

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