Hacker High School leads Bobcat to cyber success

June 03, 2024

Nicky Desai holding a feather in a garden

Nicky Desai ’28, solidified her passion for coding and innovation in Quinnipiac’s Hacker High School program. During her senior year of high school, Desai realized that Quinnipiac would become her new academic home, providing a foundation for her to hone her skills and pave the way for forward-thinking innovators like herself.

Hacker High School allows high school students the ability to learn how to protect themselves and their information from cybercriminals and get ahead within the fast-growing, high-potential industry of cybersecurity.

She has always been interested in hacking and cybersecurity. Once Desai discovered Quinnipiac offered a program that checked off all her boxes, she could not pass up the opportunity to understand how computer and digital information works, as well as gain a deeper knowledge of how this connects to the field of cybersecurity.

“I have always been into crimes and police work,” said Desai. “So instinctively I was already interested in cybercrime and cybersecurity. I want to continue my future career in working for the FBI or CIA.”

Robert Jasek, chief information security officer, along with the other students she met during the program, reassured her that cybersecurity was the right profession for her.

“He was a huge contributor to my decision on cyber security as opposed to forensic science,” she said. “All of his knowledge and experience within the industry inspired me to have a career like his one day.”

Desai was not only drawn to Quinnipiac by her positive experience in the Hacker High School program, but she was also keen on their 3+1 program. Throughout her high school career, she diligently prepared for this opportunity, participating in dual enrollment for all four years.

As she steps onto campus this fall semester, her journey at Quinnipiac begins, and she holds high expectations for her future pursuits.

“I want to create a safer cyber platform and eventually down the road open up my own private investigating business,” said Desai. “Quinnipiac will support me in achieving these goals by providing guidance from peers, faculty and a community that can back my future endeavors.”

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