The Computer & Digital Forensics major was a perfect fit for Jonathan.When I first heard what Digital Forensics was, I realized that it was what I'd always wanted to do. I just didn't know it was an actual profession. As far as I knew, it was what detectives did. When it came time for the college application process, Champlain College has a good reputation in the industry, and it was sort of a no-brainer.
He loves the enthusiasm his professors bring to the classroom.The thing I love about the professors at Champlain is that not only are they at the top of their field, but they're also usually as passionate as the students themselves. My favorite professor is Jonathan Rajewski, because in class you can see that he loves what he's teaching. He makes sure it aligns with what's going on currently in the world of digital forensics and cybercrime so that we're ready for anything once we graduate.
He has been working at the Leahy Center for Digital Investigations since his first year.I'm a Security Operations Center Analyst at the Leahy Center for Digital Investigations (LCDI). I love that it's an actual world-class laboratory that allows students to do ground-breaking research starting their first year there. At the LCDI, I've been able to use a lot of what I've learned in the classroom. The difference is that if I do something wrong in class, I can just start over. If I'm in the LCDI and I mess something up, I have to start the whole project over because the evidence has been tampered with. There's real consequences.
And is involved in several clubs on campus.The Digital Forensics Association and the Cybersecurity Club both have the same aim: to teach students what they don't learn in class. For example, one night we had a lock-picking event. It's not something you'd learn in class, but it's still a useful skill to know. I'm also in the Equestrian Club, and that's an awesome stress reliever. We ride horses and go on trail rides; it's really laid back.
Jonathan's summer internship was sad to see him go...I was a security engineer at a small company called Boingo Wireless, which distributes Wi-Fi to major venues like airports and military bases. There were only two security engineers while I was working there: the director and me. He confronted me within the first week because I hadn't been asking questions during the meetings, but he was surprised when I told him I actually understood everything they were talking about. I ended up doing a lot more than I thought I would be, like handling their instant response and setting up security policies. At the end of my internship, they said they were having a hard time trying to replace me.
Jonathan, Digital Forensics majorInglewood, CADIVISION OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY & SCIENCES
Mary enjoys the real-word projects in her Digital Forensics classes...
My Digital Forensics classes have a lot of real-world examples. In class, we've simulated investigating a kidnapped child, a drug dealer and a terrorist organization. It's really helpful for our professors to make such realistic situations for us since those are the kind of things that we could be dealing with in the field.
Core develops her skills and knowledge in new ways...
I really enjoyed Core. I think that in the IT industry specifically a lot of people skills can be lost if not practiced. Core really helps people in tech-focused majors learn to communicate, how to work in a team environment and it enhances our writing skills, all of which are really crucial.
The Senator Patrick Leahy Center for Digital Investigation (LCDI) has given her professional opportunities...
At the LCDI, I was in charge of two teams over the course of a year-and-a-half. We were working on different devices doing digital regeneration and analysis on them. During the research process, I even directly applied the information I learned in my classes like Mobile Device Forensics. The work has been presented at a major digital forensics conference, Fuse 2016, and it's been really groundbreaking in the industry. I know that employers will be impressed with what I've learned and done here at Champlain.
At Champlain, Mary found a strong community...
Champlain has such a close-knit community. You meet some of your best friends here, and you make real connections. At Champlain, you will be part of a community that will support you no matter what your dreams or goals are.
Mary knows she is prepared for life after college...
Because Champlain is so career-focused, I have a really good idea of what life is going to be like after college. There's not a doubt in my mind that I'll be prepared, if not over-prepared for what's to come.
Mary, Computer & Digital Forensics majorColumbia, South CarolinaDIVISION OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY & SCIENCES
Nancy knew the Computer & Digital Forensics program was too good for her to pass up. I applied to 14 schools with a wide range of majors, but when I read about the Computer & Digital Forensics program, it sounded amazing. I came to Admitted Students Day, and the second I stepped on campus, the decision was made. Even though I did not have a background in computers, the Upside-Down Curriculum threw me right in. You learn from books, but you also get to learn hands-on, which made a really big difference for me. Right now, I'm doing stuff I never thought I would be doing in a million years. You have this chance to learn what you're passionate about here, and it really makes a difference. Champlain gets that.
She enjoys her classes so much, Nancy didn't even realize everything she'd learned until she took a minute to reflect. My first year, I took a class called Cybercrime. Our final project was to use EnCase to go through emails and interview a suspect to see where his identity was stolen. I think a lot of college students have this moment, where they sit in class and think, "What have I learned? I know nothing!" which is stressful, especially during finals week. But I could actually see the results in front of me, and I realized, "Oh my god, I'm actually learning." When you're passionate about something, you don't even know you're learning because you're just sitting there, enjoying every minute of it.
The Women in ITS Club has empowered her to become a role model for other women in cybersecurity. I'm a member of the Women in ITS Club, the Digital Forensics Association and the Cyber Security Club. I'm also a Peer Coach with the Career Collaborative. I realized that in a field where there are only 11% women, I may not have that many female role models, so I had to become one. Thanks to Women in ITS, I got to go to the Women in Cybersecurity Conference in Tucson, Arizona. There were probably around 3,000 women and I networked and had so much fun.
Core helped Nancy discover new passions. I have loved all of my Core classes so far. I took an Ethics & the Environment course in my sophomore year which focused specifically on water. At first I thought, "How am I going to sit here and learn about water for three months? This is going to be ridiculous." But it was amazing. My professor was so passionate about what she was teaching, and I think all Champlain professors are. Their passion resonates, and it gets to the students. For our final project, my group studied invasive species in Lake Champlain, and our poster ended up being presented to all these people.
You don't know the significance of what you're doing until it's done. That's kind of what Champlain does, it gives us depth to these concepts I never even thought about before.
Nancy, Computer & Digital Forensics majorMohegan Lake, NYDIVISION OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY & SCIENCES
Aaron chose Champlain's Computer & Digital Forensics major to help him reach his professional goals...
I chose Champlain because the Digital Forensics major interested me more than anything else I'd seen at other schools. I've always been interested in computers, and since I want to go into law enforcement after college, Computer & Digital Forensics was the logical move to make. I liked Champlain's program because I would get to take my major-specific classes early through the Upside-Down Curriculum, and having a place like the Senator Patrick Leahy Center for Digital Investigation (LCDI) meant I would be able to practice the skills I've learned in the classroom in real-world investigations. Going to one of the best schools in the country for degree I was interested in was why I decided to come to Champlain.
Aaron is gaining valuable hands-on experience for his field...
My major specific classes and professors give us hands-on experience with topics we'll need when we enter the field. I've already done practical reports in my cybercrime, forensic science and digital forensics classes. Instead of just hearing about methods and ideas, I'm actually doing them in class.
Aaron is part of the Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC)...
The University of Vermont's United States Army ROTC hosts students from other area schools such as Champlain. The partnership allows us to participate in the program and get to experience a lot of interesting classes and hands-on training. It also provides great scholarship opportunities. I get to do a lot of things most other college students won't ever do, and I have the opportunity to serve my country in the military when I graduate.
To students interested in Champlain, Aaron's advice is...
When you visit, ask the students at Champlain a lot of questions about what they've experienced. Your tour guide or a brochure can show you the physical place, but students can show you the experience.
Aaron, Computer & Digital Forensics Newark, VTDIVISION OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY & SCIENCES
Scott loves everything his Computer & Digital Forensics major has to offer...
I have enjoyed my time in Champlain's Computer & Digital Forensics program from the start. You dive right into relevant classes with the Upside-Down Curriculum. We get a lot of hands-on experience using forensic tools that are used by professional digital forensic analysts, and all my professors bring their experience into the classroom.
The Senator Patrick Leahy Center for Digital Investigation (LCDI) is Scott's favorite part of his major...
I've used the skills I've learned in class the most in my work-study job at the LCDI. Learning is one thing, but putting what you learn into practice and attributing it to real life work is a necessity. In the LCDI, I'm able to apply what I've learned to help with case work that we get from State of Vermont investigators, local law enforcement, lawyers and digital forensic examiners. I'm using cutting-edge programs and technologies on a regular basis which allows me to familiarize myself with the tools being used by examiners in the field.
Scott knows he is ready to graduate and enter his field...
The experience I've received at the LCDI is the best part of Champlain College. I am confident that I will be able to go straight into the field right out of college and perform well at any job I get thanks to the LCDI and the classes at Champlain.
Scott, Computer & Digital Forensics MajorHinesburg, VTDIVISION OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY & SCIENCES
After GraduationAaron is a Incident Response Consultant at Stroz Friedberg, an Aon company.