Posted:September 8, 2017
Paul Robichaud, Cyber Defense Analyst at the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) - Global Operations Command, Scott Airforce Base, started at Century College during his senior year of high school, when he began taking courses as part of the Post-Secondary Enrollment Options program.
"My PSEO experience at Century couldn't have been better. The coursework allowed me to gain new and diverse perspectives on a variety of topics. Also, I met Scott Simenson, a faculty member in the Information and Telecommunications Technology Department. After speaking with Scott and learning about the ITT degree program and the resources offered in the Kopp Technology Center, I decided that Century was the best choice for me. I enrolled as a part-time student the next year," Paul said.
Paul found that the courses he took in the ITT degree program emulated much of what IT professionals experience in the workplace. "The hands-on format allowed me to learn a great deal, and it was essential to my success in both academia and my career. The networking equipment in the Kopp Technology Center's labs was available for ITT students to learn and experiment with. I would often get ahead of the course curriculum just by trying new things while experimenting both during and outside of class time. The ITT department also offered NetLab, which allowed students to remotely reserve and access pre-built labs with physical networking hardware located in the Kopp Center. This was incredibly convenient, and was also essential in higher-level (CCNP) courses, which made heavy use of NetLab," Paul remembered.
In addition to Paul's regular coursework, his participation as a member of Century College's Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (CCDC) team was helpful to his career success. "CCDC gave students a chance to act as defenders of a simulated IT infrastructure while professional penetration testers attempted to hack into the systems. The CCDC experience was both very intense and very educational, " Paul stated. "Century College was a great experience for me--one that has contributed greatly to my success in my career."