10 Reasons Why You Should Go Into Cyber Security

10 Reasons Why You Should Go Into Cyber Security

Cyber security is the right career path to be in right now.
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So imagine if you were working an entry level job making more than $65,000 a year with only an associates degree and no prior experience. Crazy, right? Not only is this realistic, but this is the world of IT/Cybersec. Here are 10 reasons why college students and young professionals should consider IT/Cyber Security.

1. Cyber security is the most in-demand field to be in.

“The demand for the (cyber security) workforce is expected to rise to 6 million (globally) by 2019, with a projected shortfall of 1.5 million,” stated Michael Brown, CEO at Symantec, the world's largest security software vendor. By 2020, there will be more than 4 billion people on the Internet, all including small corporations and even the military. This has led to a need for finite cyber security.

2. The basic requirements are super basic.


According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are currently 8,202 job postings available for someone with an Associate's Degree. However, there are 57,400 jobs open for those with a Bachelor's Degree, making you qualified for 600% more jobs than someone with just an Associate's Degree. Additionally, you will need certifications, which take a little time and money but are worth their weight in gold. For a tech support job, which is the first building block to a career in cyber security, you will need at least CompTIA's A+ Certification (which is super easy btw). Other than that, have a clean record and good people skills.

3. The best career field for veterans.

In 2016, Virginia announced the launch of Cyber Veterans Initiative, which provides veterans with access to free cyber security training, opportunities, and resources to help veterans enter the cyber workforce. This includes applications for CyberCorps®: Scholarship for Service (SFS), which provides scholarships for college students studying cybersecurity in return for federal, state, local or tribal government service upon graduation. Upon graduation, many federal agencies and corporations have "Veterans Preference" which means that you have a better chance of obtaining a job than someone who has no prior military service. With hiring bonuses and employment incentives for active duty military, this career field is by far the best for veterans and those currently serving.

4. You can pretty much go anywhere with this degree.


As of 2016, there are 1 million job openings for cyber security globally, according to Forbes Magazine. 209,000 of those jobs are in the United States, from Hawaii to Maine, the biggest concentrated areas being in the Washington, DC metropolitan area and Minneapolis, MN. If you desire a job with lots of mobility and high salary, this is the ticket.

5. The pay is great.


According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the most recent median pay for an Information Security Analyst is $88,890 a year. The lowest 10% earned between $30,000 and $50,300, with the upper 10% earning more than $140,460.

6. You get the opportunity to work at the coolest government agencies.

With a cyber security degree, you can have a chance of working at some of the coolest government agencies such as DARPA and the NSA. This also includes the Department of Defense, Central Intelligence Agency, Department of Homeland Security, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

7. You don't have to take math.

For those who are in college or about to start, the coolest thing I thought about my degree was the fact that I didn't have to take calculus or any sciences. The curriculum itself was often strenuous, the courses built very specific skill sets. Rather than taking calculus, you were taking programming courses (I chose C++, not for the faint of heart). There are a few schools that offer a Bachelor's Degree in Cybersecurity (B.A.S) so the best way to obtain a degree is to start at your local community college. Most B.A.S programs have an age requirement (25 at GMU) but low GPA minimums (2.0) which is great for those like me who are very new to this field and still young.

8. You will learn how to play with cool gadgets.


The coolest experience I had in college was learning how to build a Raspberry Pi 3. Paired with Kali Linux, which makes it essentially a mobile hacking station. Also, routers are cool as hell, because you can have good internet, and who doesn't like that.

9. You can learn to hack.


Like a lot of other people in my field, I had an infatuation with hacking growing up. Seeing it on a TV show, I thought it was the coolest thing I've ever seen. Now that I have a better understanding of what hacking actually is, look at it as Spiderman discovering his powers vs learning how to utilize them. Hacking is a very long process and will take time (maybe even a lifetime) to learn and master. Being in the field will put you on the path to learning how to utilize each process.

10. It's never too late to start.


I used to joke about how everyone in my classes were at least 25. I suddenly realized that was the best reason to go into this career field. I had a classmate who was laid off and unemployed but once he got into the field mid-year, he was doing beyond great for a 55 year old. So, if you're really feeling it, make the transition now and reap the benefits while you still are able.

Cover Image Credit: Fast Company

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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Yes.

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A few years ago, Shonda Rimes decided to do a year of saying yes, after her sister told her she says "No" to everything. It ended up changing her life.

So, I've decided to embark on my own year of yes.

Sure, it may be easy to say yes to everything when you're a millionaire with a bunch of record-setting televisions shows, but the rest of us can do it too.

Say yes to treating yourself.

Say yes to taking care of yourself.

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Say yes to new opportunities

The year of yes is about taking better care of yourself.

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