1 June 2018 | by Laura Sehl

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IBM Cyber Days for Girls Takes Over Fredericton

CyberNB was thrilled to have sponsored the #IBMCyberDay4Girls in Fredericton on May 17th, 2018. This day brought together more than 100 middle girls to the Crowne Plaza to learn about online safety and get them excited about cybersecurity.

IBM Cyber Days for Girls is an initiative which will be reaching over 1000 girls in 2018. Through this initiative, girls get the chance to learn about the Internet of Things, participate in group activities such as basic threat modelling, and get to know some of the women of IBM who can tell them what it’s like to work in the tech industry. IBM holds Cyber Days for Girls in the US, Canada, Australia, South Africa, and most recently in Nigeria, hoping to encourage more girls to pursue cybersecurity education.

The timing of the event, paired with CyberSmart Summit 2018 and the CyberTitan Championship, could not have been better. This event, spearheaded by IBM’s Heather Ricciuto, who also spoke at CyberSmart Summit 2018, helped girls learn about staying safe online, career opportunities in cyber and the value of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) education.  The girls even got to try their hand at a CyberTitan image, and many decided that day that they would like to form a CyberTitan team for next year’s competition.

Participants were introduced to female role models in the cybersecurity ecosystem from organizations like IBM and ICTC. Being able to see role models in this industry helps girls be able to see themselves in a potential STEM career.

I was excited to be able to represent CyberNB at IBM Cyber Days for Girls. As a student, I appreciate the ability to connect with people in the community working in the industry, and I hope I was able to show the girls that there is room in New Brunswick’s cybersecurity industry for them no matter what educational background they have. One of the best parts was being able to speak to the girls and let them know about some of the work CyberNB does in New Brunswick’s cybersecurity ecosystem and let them know that we are pushing for amazing opportunities to be available to them.

Attending the event, it was exciting to see girls light up and be enthusiastic about cybersecurity. The event even ran a little late because so many girls were excited to present what they learned. This is a small step in having more women and girls engaged in cybersecurity. Hopefully, some of the girls who participated will be looking to join our ecosystem in the years to come.


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