Story By: Wendi (AKA mamabear56)
University: ECPI University
Team Name: D0wn the L1ne
Tell us a little bit about yourself
I am an older competitor and my university's only female competitor.
I am married with three daughters; one that has completed college and is out working and one that just completed high school. My youngest is going to a school that specializes in Autism. She has several more years until completion.
I am completing my Bachelor's Degree in Cybersecurity at ECPI University. I will be pursuing my certificates that will include Network, Security, Linux, Certified Ethical Hacker, Certified Pen Tester, some Cisco Certifications, and possibly some Microsoft Certifications.
After graduation, which is in August, I want to have a position where I can show off my skills.
Tell us about your interest in cybersecurity
My interest in cyber security came when all I would see that hackers are always breaking into systems and stealing people's personal information. I wanted to do something about that. I started researching schools and started taking classes through ECPI University online about 2 years ago. I moved to the campus last year in order to complete my education.
Why are you participating in Wicked 6 Cyber Games?
I really enjoy the competitions. The two previous competitions were blue team competitions. I loved the thrill of defending the box and searching out the different ways that someone from red teams tried to get on. I look forward to playing the [Wicked6] game since it is based on real life events that have already happened. I really like the hands-on experience. You can learn a lot from books, but it is so different learning in an environment that simulates what it is like in the real world.
What challenges do you expect to encounter?
There are always challenges, but I will figure out the challenges by the documentation that I already have from other competitions, the documentation that I have from practicing with Project Ares, Google, and my fellow teammates.
What do you expect to get out of the Wicked6 Cyber Games event?
As with any of the competitions, there is always something to learn and gain knowledge from. The event is not just to show off what I know, but to learn how to look to my teammates for assistance for something I may not understand. Everything that is learned is something that I could face in the real world and this is good experience for knowing how to handle situations and not just studying them.
Do you have any advice for your peers?
If you love a challenge, you love computers and networking, and you love hard work, then cybersecurity may be right for you. Today, it is easier to get educated on cybersecurity. There are schools in your area that teaches it or there are schools online. I know that this is a challenge for women. Most of the older women that I know studying in this field have struggled in learning. If you want this, then don't let anything stand in your way of achieving your goals.