Ivan Pitton (Former Unitec ISACA Student Group President) & Charly Abarro (Former Vice-President):
As recent graduates and Unitec ISACA Student Group members, we wanted to share our experience and some constructive tips on how to transition from studying to working in the Cyber Security industry. Currently we both work for the Spark’s Security Operations Centre (SOC) team as Security Engineers.
To get into the Cyber Security (or IT in general) industry as a graduate while conducting only the most basic, minimal, day-to-day activities that will allow for a “pass” is simply insufficient. Extracurricular activities are a must if you want to get noticed and stand out.
During my studies at Unitec I recognised the values of being a member of Unitec ISACA Student Group. It was the point of difference that would allow me to stand out from the crowd, to get noticed by potential employers. One of the main advantages Unitec ISACA Student Group provided was in the area of “business networking”. Think of it as “real-life” LinkedIn (also a must if you are getting started). Besides networking, ISACA also provides a huge knowledgebase that students can utilise and incorporate into their studies as well as world-wide recognised certificates that are the cornerstone of current international Cyber Security, compliance, assurance, governance and audit standards.
Cyber Security industry is largely based on trust and networking, particularly in NZ, where the industry is small and most employers know each other as well as exchange information (staff and possible employees info included). Historically, Cyber Security is a senior position and for graduates to be considered as a potential employee they need to show technical knowledge, understanding of fundamental concepts and most of all, have passion for the industry.
Stand out, make the connection and show initiative.
Ivan & Charly.
From L-R: Ivan Pitton & Charly Abarro (Previous President and Vice President – Unitec Student Group), Vernon Lomberg (Previous President – ISACA Auckland Chapter), Rishad Smartt (President – ISACA Auckland Chapter) and James Donaldson (President – Unitec Student Group)