Educator | Information Security Associate | Cryptography Enthusiast | Overly-attached Puppy Mom

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Now that we have that official tagline, marketing stuff out of the way. Let’s give you what you really clicked on this page for: a personal, hopefully not-too-boring, why-am-I-here type thing.

See that chick on the left with the dumb sign and coffee? That’s me.

At that point in time, I had graduated just over a year before with a B.A. in Theatre and Performance, a minor in Medieval English Literature, and 3 Associates. I assumed I was done with school long before that picture was taken, but no such luck.

But let me start at the beginning.

In 1998 (woah, weren’t expecting to go that far back, huh?), Her Interactive came out with a Nancy Drew mystery game series for the computer. My grandmother, knowing I enjoyed both the book series and computer games, bought it for me immediately. There are now over 30 games in the series and not one that I have not played, but I digress.

When I went back to school for computer programming and web design, I registered for a class called “Networking for Business.” It was going to be my easy course for the semester. Elevator pitches, cover letters, how to “wow” at networking events…

For those of you already laughing, thanks… For those of you who haven’t caught the joke yet, they did not mean social networking. They meant routers and switches and my dear friend, Cisco Packet Tracer.

Realizing I was horribly mistaken, I was definitely overwhelmed in my first class. I realized I needed all the study time I could manage. I discovered that the computer lab was open to anyone for 2 hours before the start of class for the “Cybersecurity Club.” Having no idea what that was, but having access to both my lab terminal and free pizza (mmm pizza!), I decided there wouldn’t be any harm trying it out.

After all, school involvement is important.

At one of the first club meeting I attended, a professor spoke about Cryptography and we did a Vigenère cipher. My lifelong adoration for any form of Nancy Drew-esque puzzle had finally come to fruition! I chased the professor down and begged him to tell me what I needed to do with my life to in order to have that as a career. A year and a half later, I’m slowly becoming a real-life Nancy Drew.

The original purpose of this blog was to talk about how a detective from the 30’s taught me cybersecurity. In the time since it’s conception, it has become a lot more. I’m not entirely sure what that is yet, but I hope you will enjoy the journey with me.

Thanks and best wishes,