June 19, 2024

Stefan has found his path into cybersecurity thanks to the Marine Corp where he was a rifleman. While his point of entry into cyber was the typical coding and technical aspect of cyber, he soon discovered that there was more to cybersecurity than that. Governance and Compliance have since been his main areas of focus while he’s pursuing a university degree and internships in cybersecurity.

Stefan continues to serve his community through his support of other veterans, volunteering at a retirement center and by sharing his fascinating Journey into Cybersecurity with us.

I hope you enjoy our chat with Stefan and find inspiration in his story.

Recommendations from Stefan

  • To get into cybersecurity, you have to find your niche.
  • GRC: Governance Risk and Compliance requires less technical skills than penetration testing. Check it out!
  • Find work experiences at the school where you learn cybersecurity.
  • Find work experiences through volunteering your services such as retirement centers. Sharpen your social skills while you’re at it.
  • If you want to get into a management role, you still need a degree. Experience is not always enough to succeed in cybersecurity. This is very true in the federal government.
  • What you put into college, is what you get out of college. Show your teachers you are serious about your education with your efforts.
  • Network. Network. Network.
  • Leverage internships.
  • Organizations should create junior level roles and mentorship opportunities to young graduates.
  • If you hear something, say something. Share your lessons learned and resources with fellow veterans.
  • Veterans should have a plan and backup plan. They may want to consider college courses post-deployment.


  • Illinois State University – Cybersecurity program
  • Vet Tech = VA service to veterans to help them get a job in IT.

Cathy Olieslaeger

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