After 22 years of working in the hotel business and becoming a food and beverage manager, 42-year-old Marc McCarthy came to the realization that “very few opportunities for advancement existed,” he says. “Basically, I had to find something economically feasible to pursue a higher education.” He decided to enroll in classes nearby at Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA), where he began studying in three different fields: databases, web design and programming. Then he took an introductory cybersecurity course and made what he calls “a dynamic pivot in my education direction,” ultimately earning an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree in cybersecurity.

 

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