My Cyber Why — Episode 8: Dr. Ambareen Siraj

Welcome to the eighth episode of “My Cyber Why” — a glimpse into the life and work of experts from around the world who have dedicated themselves to protecting cyberspace.

Diana Kelley
Aug 29 · 2 min read
Create your tribe. (Source: Getty)

There’s no shortage of scary headlines about the latest hacks and malware releases. But what doesn’t make the headlines are the inspiring stories of the people who work every day to make the cyber world a safer place. These are their stories and cybersecurity is their passion.

Today’s guest is Dr. Ambareen Siraj.

Ambareen wears many hats, and she says her most important one is being the daughter of Sirajuddin and mother of Reetesh-Reethee. She is a Professor in the Computer Science department at Tennessee Tech University and the Founding Director of the university’s Cybersecurity Education, Research, and Outreach Center. Ambareen’s research is focused in the areas of cyber-physical systems security, network security, security education and workforce development.

Ambareen is also the Program Director for DoD CyberScholarship (CySP) Program, NSF CyberCorps Program, NSA GenCyber Camp at Tennessee Tech and the Founder and Conference Chair of the Women in Cybersecurity Initiative, WiCyS.

Episode 8 — Dr. Ambareen Siraj

In each episode guests answer four questions:

  1. Who are you?
  2. What do you do in cyber?
  3. Why do you do it?
  4. How can people get involved or learn more?

Ambareen shares many insights and much wisdom in this session, but, as always, for the TL/DR crowd — highlights in the Timestamps.


[:46] Welcome Ambareen! — Educator, Researcher, Founder, Administrator, Mother, Wife, & Daughter

[1:40] Who designed the art in the Cybersecurity Lab?

[2:20] Can you guess how many students were in the first cybersecurity class taught by Ambareen?

[5:00] Many opportunities for learning — Cyber in higher ed and in industry

[7:04] How to get more women interested in Cyber? Start with a gathering, create a tribe

[11:57] Ambareen’s original why — falling in love with the subject matter

[13:24] Ambareen’s advice on how to start in cyber and how to get involved with WiCyS

Thanks for watching!

The next WiCyS takes place in Aurora, Colorado March 12–14, 2020. Speaker program participation is open now until October 19, 2019. Student scholarships open now until October 19, 2019. Hope so see you there!

Want to get involved? Do you or someone you know have a fantastic Cyber Why? Reach out to me on LinkedIn or Twitter

Microsoft Cybersecurity

Diana Kelley

Written by

Cybersecurity Field CTO at Microsoft. Reader, runner, dog and cat lover.

Microsoft Cybersecurity

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