Cyberworkplace enabled me to transition from a student to a young professional

Tsvetelina Shabanska, Former student & ambassador of Cyberworkplace

Please introduce yourself.

My name is Tsvetelina or just Lina. I am from Bulgaria, 23 years old. In January this year, I graduated from M.Sc. in Crisis in Security Management at Leiden University, and I am still completing M.Sc. in Cybersecurity in Bulgaria. My interest falls in the field of security and technology, more specifically in information security and lately privacy. Apart from that, I also like horse riding and yoga.

When did you join Cyberworkplace? What was your motivation?

I joined Cyberworkplace back in February 2019. My main motivation was to learn some more technical skills and to find a group of like-minded people that are just as passionate about computers and security. Also, I wanted to make the transition between a non-technical career path to one involved more into ICT, and I thought Cyberworkplace was a good place to start.

What did you like about Cyberworkplace?

There are so many great things about Cyberworkplace. I really liked the fact that we had space and the environment to develop our tech skills in a more informal setting, but also the responsibility to do so in our own way. In that sense, it’s very different from school or university. Cyberworkplace has always provided the resources and logistics for students to learn, but also it depends on people’s own motivation and effort to succeed.
Also, you get introduced to many organizations and companies from various fields of work within cybersecurity, so you can really find what you like specifically.

What have you learned at Cyberworkplace?

Many things. From coding, through digital forensics, lock picking and building an escape room! Another very important skill I managed to master during my time there was to provide feedback and peer-to-peer learning, which is also very important when a young adult is entering the workforce.
Further, I had the possibility to follow courses and presentations in Dutch. For an international like me, it’s very important to learn the technical terminology in the country that you’re working in, so CWP also provided me with the opportunity to do so.

What is your most favorite moment at Cyberworkplace?

The CyberHeroes project we had last year. We had the chance to meet not only different organizations and people from all around the world, but also to play not one, but two CTFs.

What are you currently up to?

I am currently working as a Tester at Cybersprint to which I got introduced via Cyberworkplace. Also, I am doing an internship in the cybersecurity section of an international organization.
Besides, I am following a course for certification in the IT Security Administration that was also provided by one of Cyberworkplace’s partners, SECO Institute.

Describe Cyberworkplace with three words.

Learn. Fun. Collaborate.

Would you recommend Cyberworkplace to your friends?

I definitely recommend it to all my friends and connections. Very often I hear people say, “Oh, I find cybersecurity very interesting, but I am not very technical. ” or “I want to do it, but I don’t know where to start.”. Cyberworkplace is a great start. You have people with different interests and skill levels, which are willing to spend time with you and help you find what you like and what potentially you are good at.
Furthermore, from a networking perspective, Cyberworkplace, its ambassadors, board and partnering organizations are always willing to support your future goals.

Is there anything else that you would like to add?

I would like to thank everyone involved in Cyberworkplace and its projects: from organizers, supporters, to the students. Everybody there has enabled me to transition from a student to a young professional, and from a non-technical to a (more) technical person.
I also hope that I will be able to contribute to CWP and its mission in the future, so more young people like myself can find how cool cyber is.

Join Cyberworkplace here