Jake Schu is a TA for CS 6263: Intro to Cyber Physical Systems Security. Keep reading to learn more about Jake!
What do you do professionally?
I’m employed at Trinity Cyber as an Emerging Threat Analyst. It’s an incredibly fun and rewarding position, where I work with a new breakthrough technology developed in-house. Trinity’s solution is able to deeply inspect internet traffic and remove or alter malicious content from files and protocols inline, in real-time, without introducing latency. It’s like an incredibly robust and powerful IPS, but on steroids. We’re doing a lot of innovative, cutting-edge things that no one else in the industry is doing, and my part is to discover and analyze all sorts of new malware and then come up with ways to neutralize them. After spending most of my career in various IT roles, I was able to pivot to this position in large part due to the knowledge gained by completing the OMSCS program.
Why do you TA for OMSCS?
I enjoy helping people. As an OMSCS graduate, I’ve been where the students are. It took me 6 years to make it through the program. I was working full time 50+ hours a week and traveling, then my daughter was born during my 2nd year. I understand how challenging this program can be at times, especially if you’re juggling work and family commitments along with coursework. There is a fine line between giving students the nudges they need to solve a problem vs. giving away the answer, but the feeling you get when someone finally comes up with the solution themselves is why I enjoy this so much. Also, CS 6263: Intro to Cyber Physical Systems Security is a very fun and interesting course!
What is your advice for future OMSCS students?
Don’t stress over your grades. Eventually, most people will get at least one B grade and spoil a perfect 4.0 GPA. It’s happened to people on their very last class, and I know it can really be a bummer. The OMSCS program is designed to be challenging but try to focus on what you’ve learned and celebrate the fact that you learned some new things, and (hopefully) passed! Also, at some point you will do poorly on a test, project, or other assignment. Don’t give up! Most classes are structured in ways that allow students to overcome a poor score and still finish with a good overall grade.
What is your preferred programming language, and why?
Python is my go-to when I need to write something up. It uses simplified syntax and can be very modular with the ability to import a ton of pre-made libraries for just about anything you need. If we had to pick one language to learn for OMSCS, Python would get my vote.