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  • What happens when you try to play a computer game with no computers?  In the case of the Alliance Converge Tour stop in Columbus…analysts, sales engineers, and even the executive director come forward and volunteer their own hardware to save the day.

    Bob West, CISO for CareWorks Tech in Columbus hosted our nationwide tour, with a room full of incredible cybersecurity professionals.  Bob led off by explaining that he, like many other infosec leaders, took a non traditional path to where he has arrived at today.  Bob was a german major in college after all.

    Jerry Murtland, CISO for Alliance Data and Joe Greene, CISO for the American Chemical Society joined Bob on an interactive panel to discuss pathways into the cybersecurity industry and the skills needed to be successful.

    A similar trend from event to event, our leaders stressed the importance of being a lifetime learner.  To always evolve and continually challenge yourself.  Professionals from all fields and roles chimed in from around the room to offer a diverse perspective on what skills are valuable and resources the students could pursue immediately, many of which, are free.

    Students were encouraged to ask questions and be inquisitive, a characteristic that’s valued in the space.  Jerry shared some of his favorite industry magazines that are widely available as a great place to get started in ethical hacking, a building block for great security practitioners.

    A short networking break allowed time for students to speak more casually with our volunteers and were encouraged to seek out mentorships with the professionals if their interest was peaked.

    Due to the shortage of computers, the students, usually broken into teams of 2-3 were amassed into larger groups of 8-10.  Volunteers like Andrew, Brad and