For many Millennials, the opportunity to work remotely and travel the country is not an unreachable dream.
Hanna Bennett considers herself an adventurer and is constantly looking for new places to visit and explore. She always wanted to move away from her hometown, a small city outside of Detroit, where most people are born, raised and stay for the rest of their lives. Choosing an out-of-state option for her post-secondary education, Hanna enrolled at Tiffin University in Ohio, a school known for its criminal justice and law enforcement programs.
Not just a starter job. A place for roots.
Continuing on her path to adventure in new places, Hanna deliberately applied to multiple careers all over the country while she finished her senior year at Tiffin. “What I looked for after college was a place I could grow and stay with, not just a starter job. Many people who graduated before me are not working at the same place they were when they graduated. That’s just not what I wanted. I wanted to put down roots,” said Hanna.
Hanna met Pondurance, an information security solutions provider located in downtown Indianapolis, at a cyber symposium during one of her senior classes. “I was open to going anywhere, but I was looking for culture. Pondurance was growing and I could see myself growing with them,” said Hanna. “When we talked, they didn’t give me a speech about themselves. I liked how personable they were. They weren’t very ‘corporate’ or uptight. They were organic in how they wanted their team to be comfortable.” Hanna was offered a security analyst position at Pondurance and she accepted it, choosing Indianapolis as her new home.
What’s it like to be a security analyst?
Hanna spends her days monitoring client networks for ransomware, malware, policy violations of employees and other issues that could cause loss of client data, information or products. Originally interested in law enforcement and government work, Hanna is drawn to the openness of her industry in that she doesn’t have to “go by the book.” “I learned both sides of the coin in my cyber defense and information assurance degree. At Pondurance, we also do penetration testing, like what I learned in my classes where we would test networks to see if they were vulnerable. Because if we could get in, someone else can, too,” said Hanna.
Even for someone as adept at exploring new places as Hanna, it was the Indy Tech Fellowship that really gave her a sense of the tech community in Indiana. Hanna joined the inaugural Indy Tech Fellowship class, a two-year program crafted for new grads to place developers, designers and product managers with leading companies where they can hone their skills, fast-track their careers and impact our community.
Hanna saw the Indy Tech Fellowship as an opportunity she couldn’t pass up. “The Indy Tech Fellowship is not only an awesome way to create relationships with other people who are also starting out in the tech community, but it is a cool way to be able to give back to Indy and experience a lot of opportunities that you otherwise would not have access to.”
Since joining the program, Hanna has become part of the Civic Engagement Committee to look for and discuss ways in which her colleagues can give back and get involved. “It is something that I am really passionate about and although we are just getting the ball rolling, I am excited to see what we will be able to do with it.” So far, the fellows have participated in a poverty simulator through the United Way of Central Indiana and are currently in the process of building a website for it.
It’s been a few months since Hanna put down roots in Indianapolis, and she’s still loving the community she chose for her tech career. “Indianapolis definitely seemed to be an area with a thriving technical community and that was something that I was really excited to become a part of,” said Hanna.
Looking to learn more about TechPoint’s Indy Tech Fellowship? Visit our Indy Tech Fellowship page to see more details on the program and view the inaugural class of Indy Tech Fellows. For questions about being a host company, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.