Class of 1997, B.A. in Management Information Systems, Accounting and Business Administration
Life has been full of opportunities and adventures since I graduated from Dordt in 1997. The education and experiences I received from Dordt have proven to be very useful in the business world and in life.
I graduated from Dordt with degrees in Management Information Systems, Accounting and Business Administration. Considering I did not decide my majors until my Junior year, I was definitely thankful for the professors at Dordt. Many of Dordt's professors took the time to help me through a challenging course load. The fact that I had direct access to the professors was extremely valuable, especially in my situation. They were always willing to provide assistance. Plus, the Christian worldview that I received in all the courses I took has proven to be a strong foundation I've been able to leverage throughout my career.
After I left Dordt, I had a number of experiences in the business world, including working for Deloitte & Touche, and later when my husband and I started our own business - Baccam Consulting - in 2004. Each of my degrees has proved very useful, especially when operating our own business!
Today, Baccam Consulting does Information Security work, which is a very challenging and rapidly changing field. There's always something new to learn, and new challenges to conquer since technology and the attacks are constantly changing, I'm continually sharpening and expanding my skill set.
Typically, I provide consulting services such as system audits, vulnerability and risk assessments, database assessments, web application assessments, and penetration tests ("ethical hacking"). Additionally, I speak and provide training on a regular basis. I'm a senior instructor for the SANS Institute (www.sans.org), as well as having had the opportunity to speak at many events such as RSA conferences, Oracle OpenWorld, ISACA, ISSA, and many more.
I have had the opportunity to provide information security training and consulting services for top financial institutions, health care organizations, universities, government institutions - basically every industry that exists, and for companies of all sizes - both domestic and international. I've even had the honor to train some of our U.S. military forces regarding cyber warfare.
Today, Syla (my husband) and I travel regularly both throughout the U.S. and internationally for the business. Our three children travel with us, and they have had a chance to experience firsthand many of the wonders God's world has to offer! When we're home we like to spend time as a family on the lake, play sports such as soccer, as well as many other family, church, and community activities.
I truly love what I do, and the Information Security field continues to be extremely rewarding. In fact, that's part of the advice I often give people about pursuing a career. Find something you love to do, and then give it 100%! You're responsible for your own education, life, and career. You'd be surprised what experiences in college and throughout life prove to be useful in the future! It's your calling to use the skills God has given you to their fullest. Take advantage of each and every day. Look for opportunities and welcome challenges. That's when you have a chance to use the skills you've been given and life can prove very rewarding.