Through an “amazing” two-month ABM internship that allowed her to put cybersecurity classroom lessons into real-world practice, Lone Star College-Westway Park Technology Center’s Alejandra Torres said she feels confident and prepared for the next step toward success as a cybersecurity professional.
“One goal I have is to make people aware of the hidden dangers that the internet can bring, so many people are unaware, especially in my community,” said Torres, who earned an LSC associate degree last May and plans to graduate with an LSC Cybersecurity Bachelor of Applied Technology degree in May 2024. “As a Latin American, I feel a great sense of responsibility to use what I have learned.”
During her ABM internship, Torres said she not only gained new cybersecurity knowledge related to threat detection management platforms as well as remediation and incident response techniques, but she realized the importance of her individual contribution to ABM.
“I learned how important it is to voice my ideas, concerns and ask questions. I learned to embrace networking and mentorship for professional growth,” she said. “I had the opportunity to talk to over 400 people in a monthly IT meeting, but the most exciting part was to give in person my end-of-internship presentation to the CEO of a billion-dollar company, Scott Salmirs.”
Torres was one of two chosen among more than 100 applications for the summer internship at ABM, a leading provider of facility services, infrastructure solutions and eMobility management. She was assigned to work with the Security Operations team, which handles threat intelligence, investigations, incident response, end-point protection and manages Security Information Event Management (SIEM).
“The goal of the internship was to enrich the knowledge of up-and-coming security professionals and help them understand how their daily work can improve the overall security posture of the company, but also impacts real business decisions,” Ivelisse Torres, ABM Director of Information Security, said.
Ivelisse said she challenged Alejandra with getting a solid understanding of how to properly manage and respond to alerts that come into the organization in a very short period and tasked her with conducting an audit of their SIEM tool.
“This project was extremely beneficial to the company as we were able to take her results to identify real time opportunities for improvements around processes and procedures. In addition, the data was used to talk through our contract renewal which directly impacts our bottom line,” said Ivelisse.
“Alejandra ended her internship with a better technical knowledge in cybersecurity and a better understanding of some key characteristics that will help her succeed in the future,” she continued. “Alejandra did exceptional work over the summer. She delivered above and beyond, and we are so proud that she was part of our program.”
With her Cybersecurity Associate of Applied Science Degree earned in 2023, the ABM experience on her resume and graduation around the corner, this future cybersecurity professional is already applying for jobs in the Information Technology field. Looking forward to what is yet to come, she added that she is grateful for the support of her LSC-Westway Park Technology Center professors and classmates in LSC’s accelerated cohort BAT program.
“LSC-Westway Park feels like family. Lone Star has changed my life completely and given me so many opportunities that I would not have had otherwise,” she said. “It has been one the best choices I have made.”
Registration for winter mini-mester and spring semester classes are underway. For information on LSC-Westway Park Technology Center programs, contact advisor William Proctor at 346.275.6038 or WW-Advising@LoneStar.edu.