NEWS + ADVICE
How Cybersecurity Training Helped 4 Cleared Professionals
As we shared in how an IT professional can transition to a cybersecurity career, free or low-cost cybersecurity training is available in the metro DC area for cleared professionals with some IT experience.
Here are four real-world examples from cleared professionals who successfully completed training.
All Source Analyst / SME Training Instructor
“My background prior to training was as an All Source Analyst and SME Training Instructor with 10+ years supporting the Intelligence Community.
“The Security University (SU) training made the difference simply by giving me the bullets and credentials to get my resume reviewed and forwarded. The IC is moving toward cyber aggressively after years of complacency. With so many returning from deployments, and separating from the services the market has become over-saturated with experienced cleared professionals. Add to that the Government is looking to do more with less and contract cuts for all Intel organizations, the competition is fierce. My ability to use SU’s hands-on performance based cybersecurity training to change vectors and now add cyber to my training and analytical background is what made the difference in finding employment.
“Now I have a specific niche that mirrors the current direction of the community. Being unemployed with resources dwindling taking advantage of the Workforce Investment Act program and SU grants was the only direction to go. It afforded me the opportunity to retool my skills and knowledge toward a new discipline without having to incur additional expenses.” JH
“Prior to the program I had 20 years of Intelligence experience with the Air Force. I had some IT experience, but nothing formal. About a year ago I came to the realization that the drawdown in Afghanistan meant that the requirements for intelligence analysts would significantly decline. I also saw on the various job boards that 80% of the requirements were for IT professionals.
“I decided that what I needed was to get some IT certs and experience and move my career in that direction. I met Sondra and she showed me the Worforce Investment Act and Security University grant programs. I’ve taken about six classes with Security University: Security+, CISSP, QEH, Q-SA-Q/PTL Security Analysis, Pen Testing, ISO 27001, Q/C&A (Qualified/ Certification and Accreditation), passed each exam and amassed a 3-year cybersecurity education in 7 months.
“Before the certs, nobody would even take a look at me. After the Certs, especially CISSP and QEH, I found that companies were actively seeking me out. It took about four months after my CISSP to go through the job offers and start a new job. My clearance, Q/ISP (Qualified/Information Security Professional) certs, and C&A/ISO 27001 made all the difference.” JT
System Administrator / Systems Engineer
“My background prior to the SU training was as a System Administrator / Systems Engineer for 10+ years. I also had experience as a Technical Lead representing system owners in the Certification and Accreditation process.
“I took the CISSP class and the Q/CA 4016A (Qualified/Certification and Accreditation) a Fully Qualified Navy Validator class to get certified and learn more about the C&A process using NIST guidelines.
“I am working today in an ISSO role. I would not have this position if it weren’t for my CISSP cert and 10 domain knowledge from SU. The SU Q/CA 4016A (risk management) class helped me with interviews because I learned how to talk about the process and understand it from start to finish. Prior to that class, I was familiar with the individual pieces of Q/C&A (Qualified Certification and Accreditation) and the theory behind them, but I had a hard time putting all the pieces together.” BF
Systems Engineer / Project Manager
“Cybersecurity training freshened up my resume with updated training. Near the end of my 5-1/2 month job search I was getting responses from both contractors and federal agencies. Not one cert helped by itself. After a collection of hands-on performance based cybersecurity training classes, I was at least being considered.
“Cybersecurity training has allowed me to converse with engineers on the front lines of cybersecurity, gave me street cred, and allowed me to better understand some of the actions taken during Information Assurance and cybersecurity actions/concerns of securing the network.” ML
Is Cybersecurity training right for you
- Underemployed or concerned about your future,
- Out of work and struggling to find employment,
- Transitioning military,
and you have some IT experience and are in the DC metro area, this may be a solution for you.