• Categories
  • The Alliance hosted its third cybersecurity Converge Tour stop of the year in San Diego California.  Patrick Henry high school hosted our volunteers with an atypical workshop flow.  Each stop of the tour presents unique challenges, and the schedule of available students, meant for an atypical day for our volunteers.

    “One of the components that change from city to city, and event to event, are the types of volunteer members we have in attendance.  We have incredible information security leaders in every market, that’s who we are.  But we also really want to show off the diversity of the industry, from practitioners, to team leads, sales and marketing, private equity, the works.  Students need to know that by achieving a base level of understanding, their career options are wide open in our space.” – Executive Director, Sidney Plaza

    We had 20 year security vets, architects, analysts, sales, account reps, government, law enforcement and sales management volunteers to speak with a rotating bevy of students throughout the day.

    The workshop began with an immediate dive into our virtual capture the flag experience, with volunteer members guiding students through difficult challenges.

    Members of the Information Security team for the City of San Diego served as mentors not only during the game, but also on panel discussions around career paths into the industry.  The local branch of the FBI also supported by sending a cybersecurity analyst to provide insight.

    “We saw a couple of firsts during our game this time in San Diego, which was really exciting” – AJ Eads, Director of Marketing and Communications.  “One of the teams used an online document editing tool to collaborate across multiple computers and that same team showed a clear difference between red team & blue team mentalities.”

    Upon completion of the gameplay, students were walked through facts about the opportunity in our space, the growth of the industry and what that meant for them in terms of job creation.  Our volunteer members shared their experiences, like having started out as a high school baseball coach, or crossing over from a more traditional information technology background.

    Students asked questions of the panel which were met with honest answers.  One student asked “will my degree in cybersecurity be outdated before I graduate?”  The consensus of the panel was “yes, but so were all of our degrees, it’s about learning how to learn.”

    Our day was made possible by the support of our global partners, Palo Alto Networks and Microsoft, and local supporters ExtraHop, Protectwise, PulseSecure, The San Diego CISO Roundtable, Cloudflare, and Evotek.