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Gen Re

John Rocco

BA Computer Science, Expected 2017

While working as an intern at Gen Re, I was able to take what I learned in the classroom at Iona to the real world. Being in IT security, I applied today’s top security practices and implemented them to a global corporation. This experience not only gave me the experience of learning how big corporations work and how their IT infrastructure is organized, but it also gave me insight on the dynamic learning environment that cyber security has to offer.
Although I was just an intern, I didn’t get coffee and I didn’t get dry-cleaning. Instead, they saw me as another employee that has a mind full of new and creative ideas to bring to the table. I was included in many meetings which included important factors and topics that impacted the organization’s global information technology infrastructure security. I learned how to use IDS/IPS systems such as SPLUNK and also learned how to build server systems with security first in mind. I was lucky enough to be granted access and tour Gen Re's main data center and see how those systems are installed and maintained in its extra secure facility.
Without Iona, this internship would have never been a possible opportunity. Not only was the Gerri Ripp Center for Career Development able to help me prepare my résumé and interviewing process for me, but the content I learned in classes reflected into real world application. Classes such as Web Application Security, Software Security, Cryptography, and Networking all played a huge role on how I was able to be a valuable asset to the business. With the guidance of Paolina Centonze, Ph.D., a Computer Science Department faculty leading the Cyber Security programs, I was capable of delivering new IT security solutions to a team of professionals with 20+ years’ experience and was honored with the opportunity to return to the organization next summer.