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Authenticity Paves the Strategy to an Inclusive Future at Girls in Cybersecurity Convention

One intern who I met on the Girls in Cybersecurity Convention (WiCyS) will at all times stand out to me as a result of I had a entrance row seat to her profession journey from Cisco intern to a tremendous group member: Anthea Gonzalez. I’ll admit to the bias of getting #latina, #latinaintech satisfaction, however I even have nostalgia and immense satisfaction for the brand new rent program I helped construct for the Cisco Safety & Belief Group. Over time it has remained one of many packages the place I get to point out up probably the most authentically, and it’s usually a reminder that that is the best option to affect change. Being genuine about our id and private dedication can kind a robust bridge to serving to us join with others.   

Why WiCyS? 

I join with the WiCyS mission on a deeply private degree. I take into account myself many issues: a lady, Latina, immigrant, and extra. WiCyS’ mission to construct a powerful cybersecurity workforce with gender fairness offers me the area to point out up as a extra genuine and more true model of myself. Balancing identities round being a lady and a lady of colour in a male-dominated area lends itself to forcing you to choose and select which elements of your self to spotlight. WiCyS encourages us to interrupt these limiting obstacles and is the safety business occasion the place I’m most real, and I merely get pleasure from being there.  

What’s your largest takeaway from the Girls in Cybersecurity Convention? 

My largest takeaway from WiCyS shouldn’t be an merchandise of branded swag or a profound piece of business knowledge; it’s a individual, Anthea Gonzalez. On the convention you meet and join with all types of girls and allies, however Anthea stands out. With little introduction, she approached me and easily and earnestly acknowledged “thanks for current.” In that second, she vocalized one thing I had not completely understood earlier than how essential it’s to seek out one other Latina in cybersecurity and the way essential it’s to undertake the mission of recruitment, retention, and development as a private endeavor.  

As our dialog continued, Anthea displayed: 

  • A drive for cybersecurity – particularly the best way to higher shield the world and the folks round her by means of forensics and superior safety tooling. 
  • The flexibility to advocate for her ardour properly, explaining the complexity of her pursuits in a fascinating means.   
  • Her willingness to discover modern concepts and applied sciences and settle for the function of life-long learner. 

From our first dialog on the Girls in Cybersecurity Convention, it was clear to me that Anthea had the abilities wanted to tackle the vastness of at this time’s menace panorama. I dedicated to advocating for her wherever I may, and in return she offered a perspective that impressed me to place a pointy deal with the significance of creating advocacy and development a private and ongoing endeavor for me.   

What influence did which have?  

The easy reply? After that WiCyS Convention, we employed her. Anthea joined Cisco as an intern in Cisco’s Safety & Belief Group the summer time after we met. Over the summer time, she was in a position to study, work with some extremely clever folks, and make many new associates. Her time at Cisco was so impactful that she was prolonged a proposal and joined us as a full-time worker in 2022. Anthea’s journey in cybersecurity is simply starting, and I’m glad to spotlight her worth and empower her at each alternative that I get.  

Past Anthea’s success, the expertise actually cemented for me the significance that I present up finest because the intersection of all my identities. I discovered that the best means for me to affect change is thru authenticity and private dedication. Making it private is how we bridge alternatives from at this time to tomorrow, on the WiCyS Convention and past.  

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