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CORe Talk Series

The Cyber Operations and Resilience Program offers a monthly seminar series the third Thursday of every month known as CORe Talk. Over the course of the year, many different topics will be introduced to further enrich our student’s education. While our faculty are all industry professionals, so are many of our current students. Many of our students are returning to college for specific credentialing offered within our program and others. CORe Talk will highlight will enable our students the chance to learn more from not only faculty and industry professionals, but some of the current peers as well. CORe Talk will feature different speakers highlighting their journeys to professional areas, tips, and more to help better prepare our students for their cyber careers.

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2023-2024 CORe Talk Series

See below for links to the upcoming CORe Talk seminars. Non-Boise State-affiliated attendees must register for the seminars using the link above to receive access to Zoom. 

September 5, 2023 at 5PM | A Special CORe Talk- AWS | Damon Dryden & Jacob Cravinho

2023-2024 Seminar Information

SEPTEMBER 5 | A Special CORe Talk- AWS

Seminar Abstract
In this session, walk through the fundamentals of networking using Amazon VPC and AWS Transit Gateway. Learn how to design and build an Amazon VPC, including choosing and configuring IPv4 and IPv6 spaces, subnetting, routing, security, NAT and more. Discover different ways to connect your VPCs to your premises using AWS site-to-site VPN or AWS Direct Connect.

Speaker Bio
Damon Dryden is a skilled enterprise solutions architect at Amazon Web Services (AWS). With a strong background in networking, he loves working on retail projects and updating the shopping experience. He was born and raised in North Idaho, where he and his family run a small farm. He graduated from Boise State University and enjoys connecting with his customers, often lightening the mood with his collection of cow jokes.

Jacob Cravinho is an enterprise solutions architect at AWS. He comes from a background in software engineering focusing on the retail vertical. He loves a challenge and is always in search of the next great meal.

2022-2023 CORe Talk Series

See below for links to the upcoming CORe Talk seminars. Non-Boise State affiliated attendees must register for the seminars using the link above to receive access to Zoom. 

March 3, 2022 at 6PM | CORe Program Update & Cyberdome Internship Opportunities | Dr. Sin Ming Loo & Marlin Roberts

March 17, 2022 at 6PM | Surviving and Thriving in Cybersecurity | Mark Stacey

April 21, 2022 at 6PM | Getting Prepped for the Federal Workforce | Vernon Littlewolf

May 19, 2022 at 6PM | Making Information Technology and Information Security a Playground | Fuli Chavez

June 16, 2022 at 6PM | Finding Happiness and Motivation in Technology Careers | Cody Shepherd

July 21, 2022 at 6PM | Sorting Truth From Fiction: Lessons From 35-years in Cybersecurity | Kim Jones

August 18, 2022 at 6PM | POSTPONED

September 15, 2022 at 6PM | Preparing for a Career in Cybersecurity | Matthew Kunzman

October 20, 2022 at 6PM | From GameStop to Google: My Journey into Cybersecurity | Ashley Sequeira

November 17, 2022 at 6PM | Hacking Your Brand | Elizabeth Khan

2022-2023 Seminar Information

MARCH 3 | CORe Program Update & Cyberdome Internship Opportunities

Seminar Abstract
The first presentation of the CORe Talk seminar series has two parts. The first presentation will provide a quick overview of the CORe curriculum, updates, and upcoming exciting ideas for the CORe program. The second part of the presentation is on the Cyberdome.

Speaker Bio
Sin Ming Loo, PhD, is the Director of Cyber Operations and Resilience Program and Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Marlin Roberts is the Cyberdome Manager at the Boise State Institute for Pervasive Cybersecurity. He is responsible for Cyberdome operations.

MARCH 17 | Surviving and Thriving in Cybersecurity

Seminar Abstract
Mark will share lessons learned from his career – government to private industry, large conglomerate to start-up, operations to research, analyst to strategist. Mark will discuss the primary enablers of his career and future expectations for the field. Cybersecurity is approachable and Mark’s talk will focus on abstract advice to education, landing your first job, and building that job into a rewarding career.

Speaker Bio
Mark Stacey is the Director for Strategy at Dragos, Inc., the fastest-growing ICS cybersecurity company in the world. He was previously the Director of Global Services; responsible for building and overseeing the delivery and execution of professional services provided worldwide. Mark was a member of RSA’s Incident Response team for 5 years where he provided incident response, threat hunting, and forensic services globally. Mark spent 7 years with the Department of Energy (DOE) performing cyber and intelligence analysis for government clients.

APRIL 21 | Getting Prepped for the Federal Workforce

Seminar Abstract
Vernon will bring his experience of starting in cyber coming fresh out of a career of network administration and hardware engineering. He will discuss the pitfalls that he has struggled with in the past and how his transition to cyber was life changing. Also bringing to the discussion what it takes to advance from a junior analyst role to a management position in cyber security. He will go over topics of hiring, what to expect when you apply for cyber jobs and what you should be putting into your resume to get you hired. There will also be discussion in working in the energy sector and working for the federal government.

Speaker Bio
Vernon Littlewolf is a DFIR Manager for NorthWind Solutions (Sub-Contractor to the Department of Energy – Hanford Site). He is responsible for a 8 person team that coordinates the digital forensics and incident response effort for the Hanford Site, Vernon has been a member of this team for the past 5 years, where he survived Solarwinds and has dabbled in the digital forensics and Kali Linux. His past ventures were working for Scientific Games, where he had the luxury of playing and installing slot machines for one of the largest slot machine manufacturers in the world and over 20 years of IT experience.

MAY 19 | Making Information Technology and Information Security a Playground

Seminar Abstract
Fuli will discuss his adventure into the world of IT/IS and how his formal education was key to opening up unforeseen doors in the field. He will share his perspectives of what it takes for individuals to be successful in the field and not get burnt out. He hopes to make the session interactive and utilize questions from those attending to go off into interesting rabbit-holes that will create a collaborative discussion.

Speaker Bio
Fuli Chavez is currently a Lead Information Security Engineer for Albertsons Companies in the Security Operations Team. He has over 20 years experience in Information Technology and Security in various verticals including consulting services, financial services, and retail services. His experience in Information Security has included information security engineering, architecture, and operations. His experience on technical systems has included SIEM, WAF, firewalls, EDR, next-gen endpoint security systems, vulnerability management systems, penetration testing tools, and other security systems.

He has a MS in Engineering and BS in Chemical Engineering from the University of Washington, and holds several IT/IS certifications including CISSP, CISA, and MCSE. Additionally, Fuli has also been an active member and on the board for the Boise ISSA Chapter and involved with other community groups in the Treasure Valley.

JUNE 16 | Finding Happiness and Motivation in Technology Careers

Seminar Abstract
Cody will share his experience of failures, growth, and opportunities of the last 20 years as an IT Professional and Manager. He will share concepts on personal growth and reflection and what “works” in his experience and what he looks for in building successful teams. He will share various Leadership styles and appropriate applicability of Emotional Intelligence concepts as well as how recognizing your intrinsic and extrinsic motivators connects you to the right position in the right company for you.

Speaker Bio
Cody Shepherd is currently the IT Operations Senior Manager for Idaho Power and second in command to the CIO. He is ultimately accountable for 80 IT Employees who provide a broad variety of IT services to Idaho Power, including: Compute (all things server Hardware and OS and virtualization), Enterprise Storage, Network, Telecom, Messaging and Collaboration, Mobility (internal mobile applications), Enterprise Application Support, DevOps and RPA, Cloud, Operational Security, ITSM, IT Compliance and Licensing, Service Desk, Desktop Support, IT Asset Management, and Disaster Recovery/Business Continuity. Cody is in his third cycle at BSU, having already a BS in Information Technology and an MBA, and now pursuing the MS in Cyber Operations and Resilience. When not working or doing schoolwork, Cody is a new golfer, loves camping and fishing, bowling, and is a Brazilian Jiujitsu instructor for Team Rhino in Meridian.

JULY 21 | Sorting Truth From Fiction: Lessons From 35-years in Cybersecurity

Seminar Abstract
Kim will discuss the stories you’ve heard about what it’s like to work in cybersecurity and what you need (or don’t need) to break into the field…but how do you separate the truth from the hype? In this presentation, Kim Jones will help you sort through the noise as he discusses cybersecurity career pathing; essential skills and traits for the cyber professional; and what a “day in the life” *really* looks like.

Speaker Bio
Kim L. Jones is a 30+-year intelligence, security, and risk management professional with expertise in information security strategy; governance & compliance; security operations; and risk management. Mr. Jones is a former Chief Security Officer who has built, operated, and managed information security programs within the financial services industry. He is also the principal architect of one of the cybersecurity degree programs at Arizona State University. Jones holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science from the United States Military Academy at West Point, and a Master’s Degree in Information Assurance from Norwich University. He also holds the CISM and CISSP certifications.


SEPTEMBER 15 | Preparing for a Career in Cybersecurity

Seminar Abstract
Matthew Kunzman is giving a presentation on a cybersecurity career path. How did he get to where he is today, and what steps did he take to achieve his goal? What advice would he give to students interested in the cybersecurity industry? What things should people learn and focus on? What are the pitfalls that people could fall into? How do you move up the ladder once you have the career you want? There will be fantastic career advice in this talk. You won’t want to miss this one.

Speaker Bio
Matthew Kunzman is the Lead Security at Kount, Inc. where he designs and develops internal security products to enhance the security posture of the business. He researches, tests, and reviews network traffic and network devices. Matthew leads the security team’s incident response efforts to security events. Additionally, he reviews systems and codebases in order to identify potential security weaknesses and recommends improvements to mitigate vulnerabilities. Matthew is also an adjunct instructor for Boise State University’s CORe cybersecurity program.

OCTOBER 20 | From Gamestop to Google: My journey into Cybersecurity | Ashley Sequeira

Seminar Abstract
Ashley Sequeira will share her story about her pivot into cybersecurity. As veterans struggle to transition to the private sector, hear how Ashley leveraged free resources to self-teach and grow her career.

Speaker Bio
Ashley Sequeira hails from Las Cruces, New Mexico, with her husband Dan and her two dogs, Carbon Fiber and Graham Cracker. She is a current student in the gCORe program at Boise State and an adjunct professor for the CORe 101 course. During her time at Boise State University, she concluded her career at Palo Alto Networks and started with Google July 2022. While at Palo Alto Networks, she ran the Security Operations training program, consulted for SOAR platforms, worked as a Professional Services Consultant and ran an employee resource group focused on Veterans. Prior to her time at Palo Alto Networks, Ashley worked in a Security Operations Center and served 13 years in the Army Reserve. In the Army, she competed on the National Taekwondo Team(2011, 2015), played in the Army Band and learned her fundamentals in IT. She holds a Bachelor’s degree from Southern New Hampshire University in General Studies, an Associate of Science in Information Systems Security, an Associate of Arts in English Literature and Communication, an Associate of Arts in English and an Associate of Arts in General Studies. Ashley holds technical certifications from SANS(GCIH), CompTIA(A+, Mobility+, Security+, CySA+), and Palo Alto Networks(PCSAE, PCDRA).

NOVEMBER 17 | Hacking Your Brand

Seminar Abstract
Elizabeth Khan will share lessons learned from her career and business endeavors –from Hollywood talent, to research and compliance consulting, with a pivot to cybersecurity! Elizabeth’s talk, ‘Hacking Your Brand,’ will focus on sharing the tips and tricks that have helped guide her throughout her career.

Speaker Bio
Elizabeth Khan is a graduate of the Boise State University Cyber Operations and Resilience graduate program (gCORe). Khan’s master’s degree has spring-boarded her into the exciting world of cybersecurity. Although new to cybersecurity, she has over 25 years of business experience as a successful entrepreneur. When not studying, Elizabeth is a voracious reader, an avid fitness enthusiast, and enjoys serving as a death doula in her community.