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Instructor Profile: Gareth Marchant, Cybersecurity Bootcamp

DigitalCrafts Cybersecurity instructor Gareth Marchant started his professional career as an electrical engineer making microcircuits for Motorola cell phones. This role was a major turning point in his career. It gave him a deep understanding of computers, and was a key driver in his pivot to the information technology field.

Over the course of his 20-year career, Gareth has worked as everything from a computer engineer to an information security officer for a government agency. Gareth holds a graduate degree in computer information systems from Nova Southeastern University and several industry certifications including CISSP, CEH, ECIH, SSCP, GMON, CASP+, Security+, CySA+, among others.

As an authorized ISC2 Instructor and certified EC-Council Instructor (CEI), he has taught undergraduate courses in cybersecurity. Now as a cybersecurity bootcamp instructor at DigitalCrafts, Gareth works closely with his students as they work to obtain the skills they need to prepare for a career in cybersecurity.

As an instructor, Gareth takes a casual, exploratory approach to learning and teaching. “I encourage students to discuss topics and ask questions, to make mistakes in order to learn and to keep an open mind to new ideas,” he notes. With more than a decade of teaching experience, he’s able to draw from his extensive work experience to make the material relatable and explain why various topics are significant. “Just come as you are; we are all here to learn and grow,” adds Gareth.

In the DigitalCrafts’ Cybersecurity bootcamp, students will be exposed to essential IT infrastructure, cryptography, application security, offensive and defensive operations, program management, and finally the CompTIA Security+ certification prep. They will perform hands-on work with many technologies and tools to help prepare them for a wide range of jobs in IT and cybersecurity.

“Cybersecurity is not a one size fits all field,” explains Gareth. “There is a lot of hype and ‘everyone needs to’ language but the reality is that cyber programs look differently depending on circumstances. What is secure in one situation is inadequate in another.”

Cybersecurity is one of the fastest-growing fields in the technology industry, and the demand for qualified professionals far outpaces the supply. As a field, cybersecurity is critical to the continued convenience and security of almost everyone. “Big companies, little companies, everyone’s dealing with the same issues in cybersecurity and are becoming more and more aware,” he says.

This cybersecurity program combines both lectures and hands-on lab content focusing on the foundational skills of securing the web. Throughout the 16-week program, students will be exposed to relevant concepts in an eight module curriculum, including the CompTIA Security + training. The full-time program is designed to provide students with an understanding of the skills and concepts required for entry-level positions in cybersecurity.

Some of the topics include:

  • Operating Systems
  • Networking
  • Offensive Security Operations
  • Application Security
  • Cyber Operations
  • CompTIA Security+ Exam Preparation
  • Defensive Security Operations
  • Cloud Technology

“The goal is for students to come out of the program confident, having gained experience working on some of these concepts,” explains Gareth. In the mornings, Gareth will lecture and give demonstrations where students will be exposed to cybersecurity concepts. In the afternoons, students will have the opportunity to put those concepts into practice with lab work and assigned challenges.

One of the things Gareth enjoys most about cybersecurity is the craftsperson aspect of it. “The setup and configuration of secure infrastructure requires extensive skill and practice. Understanding the effort required to build things securely provides a whole new appreciation of IT,” he observes. He also enjoys learning new things from his students. “I get to learn about the class topics people enjoy (and also struggle with) which helps me become a better instructor,” Gareth states. Working with his students also keeps him abreast of popular trends, as well as the perception of cybersecurity from people new to the field.

To prepare for the Cybersecurity bootcamp, Gareth recommends students create a LinkedIn profile and start making connections and engaging with people in the professional roles that interest them. He also recommends that students attend webinars on topics that excite them. The program will also help students understand which roles in the vast field of cybersecurity may be the most interesting for a potential career path.

Cybersecurity is more than hacking. Jobs in the field range from incredibly technical to less technical management and leadership roles. Furthermore, Gareth says students should “have a curious mind, persistent attitude, and shouldn’t be fearful of making mistakes.” By having an understanding that expertise takes time and practice, students will put themselves in a much better position to succeed.

Interested in upcoming cybersecurity bootcamps? View Schedule.

Bryana Wall Bryana Wall Content Writer LinkedIn