Dr. Houle’s UNV 101 class takes on cybersecurity

It’s never too early – or too late – to educate people about safe online behavior, and our Seidenberg students know this!
(L-R) Amanda Perez, Brian Bounos, Joel Thomas and Jalyn Robinson, present their ideas.
October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) and the Seidenberg School has joined with the Department of Homeland Security and its partners across the country to highlight the importance of cybersecurity and online safety.

As part of this effort, Seidenberg first-year students in Dr. Bernice Houle’s UNV 101 class took the lead to share responsibility for online security by promoting cybersecurity awareness.

The students worked in groups to create a poster and two videos that highlight three distinct cybersecurity-related issues.

 
To receive cyber security tips year round, visit www.dhs.gov/stopthinkconnect and become a Friend of the Campaign. The Stop.Think.Connect. online toolkit is filled with tips, facts, and shareable resources for several audiences, www.dhs.gov/stopthinkconnect-toolkit.

Seidenberg Alum’s Kickstarter Campaign

Marcelo Zimmler
Seidenberg Alum, Marcelo Zimmler
Seidenberg alum, Marcelo Zimmler (Class of 2012), has just launched a kickstarted campaign of his own. After graduation, Zimmler moved to London to pursue an MBA, but over the years, he has been developing his own business he calls Mariscotti Art, and it is based out of NYC. The publishing company deals with original artwork and reproductions by Contemporary Abstract artist Osvaldo Mariscotti. The Kickstarter Zimmler has just launched is campaigning to create an entire collection of unique fashion accessories inspired by Mariscotti’s art. The accessories include (so far) scarves and shawls made of pure silk, cashmere, and Merino wool.

“I thought that by presenting the art in more familiar and accessible formats, people would be able to gain insights and greater appreciation for this particular kind of art which is very valuable but sometimes misunderstood.”

To take a look at the Mariscotti Art project, or to back the fund, you can get to the Kickstarter page here!
The artist Mariscotti and some of his work.
The artist Mariscotti and some of his work.

Agile Explained

As mentioned in the previous blog post, Pace will be hosting Agile NYC for their 5th annual Agile Day, happening on the 18th. For most who have not been introduced to or worked with agile methodologies, the concept of the agile approach can seem a bit abstract, and  abstraction might be intimidating at first, but agile is something you’ll want to understand concretely before looking for work. 

Agile NYC Pace UniversityAgile NYC’s coordinator Joe Krebs, in answering a few of our questions about agile, mentioned that a company using the agile approach will expect its employees to be familiar with the methodologies before they are hired. So how does a student go from zero experience in agile to pro upon job-interview? (Actual representation of becoming an agile pro depicted below).

Well, you won’t have to be pro, but having some experience with agile will be necessary in your field. Luckily for most of you, gaining experience isn’t too hard around here, since Pace is one of Agile NYC’s closer partners. Agile NYC’s events are often in and around the university, like Agile Day on the 18th, and participating in these events will get you up to speed. Then, if you still want more practice, you can gain hands on experience by joining teams like Seidenberg Creative Labs, who will use the agile approach in their projects, or taking certain classes — an example of which being Dr. Scharff’s mobile software engineering class, CS 389 — that implement agile techniques on classroom projects. Having a rich understanding of agile will really give you the edge you need when employers compare you to you your competition.

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Agile, in the simplest terms, is a product development methodology, specifically for programmers. Many careers in programming lead to projects where someone (or a company) will consult a team of programmers to build what they need. While the programmers do their thing and the ‘bosses’ do their own, often times problems arise from start to finish. The agile method of working through a project helps avoid a lot of these problems or provides simplified methods of solving said issues as they arise — and they will arise.

From its official conception in 2001, when the Agile Manifesto was created, agile’s values are described as,

“Individuals and interactions over processes and tools.
Working software over comprehensive documentation.
Customer collaboration over contract negotiation.
Responding to change over following a plan.
That is, while there is value in the items on the right, we value the items on the left more,” (agilemanifesto.org).

This set of rules directly opposes the more traditional methodology known as the Waterfall method. Agile emphasizes the importance of personable teamwork that moves forward as a cohesive effort, rather than a group of separated workers working towards a common goal. To do this successfully, agile encourages daily meetings for teams to discuss issues before or as they arise rather than after. Not only are daily meetings valuable for avoiding issues, they also stimulate creativity and brainstorming between team members. More often than not, these meetings take on an informal tone and promote a sort of playfulness to offset stress or idea blockage.

Now that you’re on your way to becoming an agile pro, instead of wandering around next Thursday’s event, spending all your time learning what the heck agile is in the first place, you can now focus on the real meat of Agile day and feast on its workshops and networking opportunities.

 

Student Profile: Grad student Srikanth Bandaru, Co-Founder of Color Layers

Meet Srikanth Bandaru. He’s a tall, talented techie, and an entrepreneur. He’s currently pursuing his Master’s in Computer Science degree at the Seidenberg School, Pace University, in New York. Take it away, Srikanth…

Srikanth Bandaru, SeidenbergLike many teenagers who dream of making it big, my dream was to become an engineer. I attended university back in India, and loved tinkering around with computers and the Internet. The subjects I chose exposed me to a variety of programming languages, which, mind you, I picked up faster than the English language! During my second year at university I signed up for a national level technical conference and won first prize – before I knew it, I was developing websites for every department on campus!

I co-founded my web development company, Color Layers, the very next year. We help clients bring their ideas to life through design-oriented solutions. I work as a web strategy consultant and specialize in front-end development. I focus on solving clients’ problems with technology. To be honest, I never dreamt of how big we were going to be, but I knew we were onto something.

Last year, I decided to do my masters so I could expand my horizons and enhance my personal development. My driving force is to increase the reasoning powers of intelligent agents to improve the way an interface agent interacts with its environment. I am particularly excited about the fields of quantum computing, big data and network security. So that’s reason enough to do this, right? RIGHT?

But… why NYC? Why Pace?

Getting accepted is a great feeling. Getting accepted by your first choice – that puts you over the moon! But let’s be realistic – you have to apply to more than one! The novelty wears of the minute you see the tuition bill! College education comes with a cost. So I had to really debate the idea with my parents. Though I did receive a scholarship to attend Pace, I still wasn’t 100% ready. The next step I took was doing A LOT of research. I looked at a bunch of videos, Tumblr accounts and websites just to get an idea of the campus life at all the universities. Not only were academics one of the most important aspects in making my decision, the culture of campus life and the location mattered as well.

Long story short, these were the main aspects of Pace that won me over in the end:

  • Outstanding academics overall
  • Personable, incredibly intelligent professors
  • So many opportunities in terms of networking/internships/job experience for students (which makes it worth the investment)
  • Students from all over the world (I love meeting new people from different cultures)
  • Extracurricular, volunteer, and internship opportunities – more than you can count in one sitting
  • Beautiful campus (The city is our campus and yeah, NYC IS BEAUTIFUL)

There’s always a bit of uncertainty that comes along with every big decision. But now that I’m in NYC and have started at Seidenberg, I know I’ve made one of the best decisions of my life. I could talk about it all day… but for now…

Peace out everyone!

— Srikanth Bandaru

 

Remember, Remember, 5 Things for September

In just 5 days the Fall semester here at Pace will begin (as surely you have all realized by now. We hope). As usual, we don’t hesitate to get the motors running with the semester’s start. For example, here are 5 big things already happening in September that we think will fuel your engines for Fall 2014. 

WriteSpeakCode

1. September 13th – Write/Speak/Code

Our friends at Write/Speak/Code will be hosting a free, full-day, intensive developer’s workshop for women. The workshop will offer a chance for women to work in tandem to learn, practice, or improve upon their skills in software development. Not only will women be able to level-up their expertise, but the workshop is a great way to network with other developers in the field. Registration is open now, and the event includes breakfast and lunch, if you weren’t already convinced.

2. September 10th & 17th – Student Panel

Assuming this year is like any other, a great many of you are possibly in the midst of a stressful, agonizing job search. If you’re tired of being inexperienced (or just plain broke), Seidenberg will be hosting two student panels focusing on how panelists found their summer’s jobs or internships. The two days will be split between undergrad (17th) and graduate (10th) panelists. For information on the dates, keep up with Seidenberg’s Twitter or Facebook feed, where we’ll be announcing information as we receive it and posting reminders for your convenience. 

3. September 18th – AgileDay NYC

The 5th annual Agile Day will once again be happening here at Pace University. The event consists of talks from various Agile front runners, with topics such as ‘Innovation in a Rapidly Changing World,’ and ‘Developing Product Developers and Product Ownership.’ Once the talks finish, the entire Student Union will open up to host workshops and activities to promote Agile ideologies and networking within the expected crowd of 350+ agile professionals. Registration is ongoing and filling up fast, so take a look at reserving a spot. Or, as admission can be pricey on a student’s budget, we are offering a number of volunteer spots. Volunteers will be able to attend the event for free; those interested in volunteering should email Wilfredo Pena at wpena@pace.edu.

4. September 25th – UX Agency Launch

Seidenberg students Stas Vaisman and Adil Hasan are building up a UX agency that will be launching this fall. Their goal is to gather a team of students from a multitude of disciplines (Hey, Dyson! Hey, Lubin!) who will ultimately work with Seidenberg Creative Labs to enhance UX on various platforms. UX – User Experience – is rapidly emerging as a career field, focusing on all aspects surrounding product development (especially in start ups). The agency, also known as Schooled, has connections to a university in Germany, offering students who join a chance to build their own international network while gaining real-world experience. On the 25th at 6pm (Bianco Room, One Pace Plaza), Vaisman and Hasan will be fully explaining their initiative to anyone interested in joining. No reservations are required and free pizza will be served as bait!

5. September 20-21st – DroidCon 2014

DroidCon2014For all you Android enthusiasts, DroidCon is definitely going to be worth your while. This event will be the “world’s biggest, community-driven, Android developer conference,” according to the DroidCon home page. As an international conference, you’ll have a chance to learn about Android advances from the farthest corners of the world. DroidCon has also officially announced its top-10 speakers for the event, boasting an impressive host of professionals in the Android community. Registration for the conference lasts until the 19th. Tickets start at 100$, but of course we have your backs with free volunteer positions at the event. Those interested in attending DroidCon for free as a volunteer should email Dr. Christelle Scharff at cscharff@pace.edu.

 

 

Pace University’s STEM Collaboratory Camp 2014

pace-university-stem-campLast month twenty high school students from across the five boroughs embarked on a summer STEM adventure as part of Pace University’s STEM Collaboratory Camp, a collaboration of Pace and AT&T. For two weeks they learned and experimented with coding, robotics, Cybersecurity, Design Thinking and scientific research processes, among other skills. Then, they began to put their skills to work.

STEM Camp 2014_Seidenberg
On August 1st, 2014 the camp culminated with students formally presenting their very own Cybersecurity mobile apps. 

Special guests included Elizabeth Segal from AT&T, Kelli Kedis Ogborn from DARPA Legislative Affairs – Spire Communications, and Brook Gesser from U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s Office.

Members of the media were invited to attend the graduation reception.

To view the work done by each team, simply click on the links below.

Team Cybot comprising of Jacob Sadeh, Lary Toyter, Maryia Spirydonava, and Mariah Torcivia presented their app,  Cyber Triv — an app that raises awareness about Cybersecurity.

Team Cybot | STEM Camp '14 | Seidenberg

Team FoCS (aka FOX), comprising of Nicholas Austin, Sole Stewart, Loreen Chan, and Christopher Boyce, created WE-FE — an app that allows you to monitor who’s on your Wi-Fi and take appropriate action. 

Team FoCS | STEM Camp| Seidenberg 

Team Rocket, comprising of Kemar Dudley, David Lebron, Summer Carrio, and Dishan Win, created the app Secure-IT — an app that shows you just how secure you are online.

Team Rocket | STEM Camp '14 | Seidenberg

Team Phisher comprising of Iya Hawkins, Anthony Agbofoati, Anastasiya Malinouskaya, Jeremy End invented Phisher — an app that allows you find all your old posts … and have a good long think!

Team Phisher | STEM Camp '14 | Seidenberg


For more pictures and videos from STEM Camp, follow us on Facebook.

Suhail Bhandari