With just a few new motivated leaders selected mid-summer 2019, at the Northern Virginia Community College (NVCC) cybersecurity conference, we started a new chapter of what would grow to be an interactive and influential student group. I was volunteering at the event when I was asked by Professor Babur Kohy if I would be interested in the Vice President position of the Student Group. We started with a few very thin meetings over the summer semester, which was expected due to low summer enrollment and many people on summer vacations. The structure and membership began to slowly build and stabilize as we approached the Fall 2019 semester.
This group known as NOVA ISACA Student Group (NOVAISG) now has a small network of consistent members in attendance at our bi-weekly meetings. Each meeting is launched with early attendees casually catching up with each other, over pizza and snacks, talking about their recent professional experiences and educational progress. As the rest of the members arrive, it then transitions into a presentation on a fresh topic or lab that is related to Cybersecurity, IT, Computer Science or Networking. Our most popular topics have ranged from setting up personal micro routers as VPN devices or rogue access points, configuring different bare metal hypervisors and even social engineering. The presentations are kept short and sweet because we like to do an open discussion afterwards. During our open discussions we talk about any other topics we are currently interested in, studying for certification or that we might need help with to gain a better understanding. We do venture into a little bit of tutoring on minor topics as needed and I find this is a great way for members to share their knowledge with each other. We also share each of our unique stories about the status and process of our transitions within the industry. It is very exciting to learn that a member has applied for graduation, gained a certification or even moved into the industry full-time. This student group really aims to reinforce and make connections between general education and industry professionalism.
Now that NOVAISG has an established foundation, we are planning to grow our numbers so that more people can empower themselves, within the environment we have created, to further their education and transition into the industry. We are currently doing monthly giveaways, and just received an order of shirts to be disbursed to our members, as a token for their extreme dedication and contributions. With a little bit of patience and organic growth we should be able to reach our goal of 100 members over the next several months.
For information please visit: https://novaisg.org
Join our email list at: https://novaisg.org/join/
Post written by Craig Sears, NOVAISG Vice President
Jason joined ISACA in 2006 and presently serves as GWDC President. He’s served on the Chapter Board of Directors since 2014. Jason is very involved with ISACA International and some of his volunteering consists of serving on the Chapter Services Working Group, Leadership Development Advisory Council, and contributing significantly to CISA and CISM exam preparation content. Jason is an Associate Partner within IBM’s Cybersecurity and Biometrics Practice. He holds the CISSP-ISSAP, CISA, CISM, and PMP.