NyTasha Mojica has always been fascinated with computers. As a little kid, she would watch her mother use the command line to program computers. The more she used computers herself, the more she wanted to learn how they worked.
When NyTasha’s mom learned that her employer, Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters (CHKD), had an ECPI partnership program, she knew it was just the opportunity her daughter needed to go back to school. NyTasha jumped at the opportunity, initially majoring in Digital Forensics, then switching to Computer and Information Science in Cyber Security. The single mom of three graduated summa cum laude in October 2021.
During her time at ECPI University, she created a personal LinkedIn account, which quickly grew in popularity. Eventually, with her degree in hand, the social media platform led her to her new job, and there were thousands cheering her on.
What was your greatest challenge during school?
My greatest challenge during school was finding time to work on it while I had a full-time job and three kids. I had to work on school late at night to get it all done. Eventually my work was shut down for Covid, and I had more time for everything.
How did you stay motivated?
The main drive that keeps me motivated is the fact that I enjoy what I do, and my family. As a single parent of three, I was determined to work hard to better my children’s lives. The passion to learn from my studies and from experience keeps me moving forward so they will never know any struggles. Even after graduation I continue to self-study the topics of the cloud and cyber security to gain more knowledge. I use resources like TryHackMe to gain more direct experience. I ask questions and research topics that interest me.
When did you decide to join LinkedIn?
I joined LinkedIn last year in the middle of my school term to start making connections in the field to see which path I wanted to go.
How did you grow your LinkedIn network?
At first, I connected with anyone in the tech field, especially other ECPI cyber students. Then I started to connect with people that had careers in what I was interested in. Then I started posting what I was working on, studying, and questions I might have for others in the field. A couple of months ago I made a discord server for IT individuals to join to learn from each other and help each other study for certs. All these things got me to almost 2k in just 3 or 4 months. But I do connect and interact with a lot of my network. LinkedIn is where I met the person that referred me for the SAIC job that I recently started in.
What was it like to have some many people invested in your future?
Amazing. You don’t realize how much it means to have total strangers rooting for you and helping you stay focused. I have to say majority of the cyber community are very helpful and friendly. Most will help you just because they want to. It helps keep you motivated and feel good about all the hard work you go through to get into the field.
What advice would you give other job searchers?
Don’t give up. You got this. Yes, you will get rejections, but keep moving forward. Use the rejections to motivate you towards your goal. Also, take the advice others give you but do your own research on which path you want to take. Everyone gets to the same place different ways. You don’t have to follow theirs exactly. No matter what, remember that you can do this.
What’s the new job and title, and how is the new job going?
I am a SOC Tier 1 Analyst. I have now been at my new job for a month and half. I am loving it and learning all sorts of new things. I used to wait for my days off, now I wait to get back to work. I am still in training but that should be done soon. I am excited to be set free to fully join my team, who are awesome!
How do you juggle raising a family and establishing a career?
Anyone with kids knows that they never stick to the plan. I just focus one day at a time and so far, it’s been pretty easy. It helps that I work remote, so I am here if kids need me. My boss and supervisors are really great about if the kids interrupt a meeting or need me while I work. So, managing both family and work has been good.
What would you say to potential students who want to pursue their degree at ECPI?
Go for it! I am so happy that I took that step. Make sure you know the general path you want to take and do your research! But I definitely think it was the best idea I made to get my bachelor’s with ECPI.