Healthcare industry talks cybersecurity at third annual Pace University conference

The third annual cybersecurity conference took place at Pace University’s Westchester campus on Thursday, October 3, 2019. The conference included a set of panelists and speakers from many top East Coast organizations and a guest appearance from a canine cybercrime specialist.

This year’s focus was the Economics of Cybersecurity in Healthcare: Understanding the Costs of Cyber Exposure to Protect Enterprises and Patients.

After a networking breakfast, the Dean of the Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems, Jonathan Hill, welcomed guests and spoke about the work being done at Pace University. “Pace University is doing a lot to address the [cyber] threat today,” he said.

President Marvin Krislov also gave remarks, noting that “healthcare is the largest sector in the Westchester economy,” – an economy which Pace University contributes nearly $360 million to, it was recently announced.

The conference got started with an opening conversation between Jennings Aske, the Senior VP and CISO at NewYork-Presbyterian, and Anthony Johnson, Managing Partner at Delve Risk. The topic of the conversation was a threat briefing on the healthcare landscape. Jennings and Anthony dove into a fascinating discussion on risk management, patient privacy, and leading cybersecurity initiatives.

After the discussion, the Dean of the College of Health Professions, Harriet Feldman, took to the podium to discuss the industry outlook. “The intersection of technology and healthcare could not be more important than it is now,” she said.

Following was a new addition to our conference program – an interactive cyberattack exercise. The exercise was run by Shawn Fohs, Managing Director of Forensics US Cyber Response & Privacy Leader, Ernst & Young; Kevin M. McGuire, the Commissioner at Westchester County Department of Social Services; Jonathan Bandel, Assistant VP for Strategic Service Lines at White Plains Hospital, Robert Largey, Co-Founder of East Post Road Ventures, LLC, the Innovation Accelerator Arm of White Plains Hospital, and Pace University’s very own Kit Lee-Demery, the Assistant Director for Emergency Management and Fire Safety.

The session consisted of a tabletop exercise that aimed to create an opportunities for conference attendees – stakeholders within the healthcare critical infrastructure sector – to enhance their understanding of key issues associated with a focused cyberattack, including coordination and information sharing amongst private entities and government agencies in response to such an attack. Participants got to come up with a response to a fake, albeit plausible, cyberattack based on current plans, policies, and procedures. It involved contact from the FBI, hacking from malicious agencies, increasing panic, media scandals, and stolen information – all the makings of a quality drama!

Once the exercise was finished, the first panel discussion of the day took place over lunch. The panel, titled Quantification of Risk Management of the Healthcare Enterprise, included guests Michael Corcione, Managing Director at Treliant Risk Advisors and Robert Zandoli, Global CISO and Chief Technology Officer at BUNGE LTD, both of whom are Pace alumni. Co-Founder and CEO of Sovy, John Popolizio completed the group alongside moderator and Seidenberg School faculty member, Li-Chiou Chen.

No cybersecurity conference at Pace is complete without an appearance from our four-legged friend, Harley the Cyber Dog. As in previous years, Westchester County Police Department’s Detective Brett Hochron and his K9 partner Harley gave a demonstration of Harley’s skills at sniffing out cybercrime. Trained to detect a particular chemical scent present in many tech devices, Harley is capable of discovering hidden USBs, SD cards, smartphones, and more – even if they are very carefully hidden. Detective Hochron explained that, as Harley only eats when she successfully finds a hidden device, she associates working with a worthy reward, making her quite possibly one of the happiest professionals in the cybersecurity industry.

Prior to the demonstration, Detective Hochron hid several devices around the conference room, including a micro USB taped to an electrical outlet and another one tucked under a pillow. Harley found them all within minutes.

Harley’s training has enabled her to assist police and the FBI’s cyber crime unit in convicting criminals. When police conduct physical searches, they may miss evidence that is hidden under floorboards, in electronic sockets, inside furniture, and other imaginative locations. Dogs like Harley are able to provide the backup that ensures no laptop is left unturned or undiscovered.

The final panel of the day looked to the past, present, and future. The panel was titled the Evolution of the Cybersecurity Program for the Healthcare Enterprise and featured Chris Hetner, Managing Director of Marsh Risk Consulting’s Cyber Risk Consulting; Steven Goriah, DHA, CHCIO, FACHE, VP of Information Technology/CIO, Chief Information Security Officer at Westchester Medical Health Network, Seidenberg professor and digital forensics expert Darren Hayes; and Jennings Aske, SVP and CISO at NewYork-Presbyterian. Seidenberg professor and Associate Dean, Jim Gabberty, moderated the discussion.

Following the panel, Dean Jonathan Hill gave his closing remarks and the conference was open for guests to network and meet with panelists.

We are grateful to our sponsor, Treliant, for the generous support in making this conference a success.

Thanks also go to Detective Brett Hochron of Westchester County Police Department for another fantastic presentation with Harley.

Pace University hits top ten in online IT degree rankings

Pace University’s online Master of Science in Information Technology hit top ten rankings in Online College Plan’s list of 30 Best Online Information Technology Masters. The 2019 results saw Pace University’s online IT degree reach 7th place among the 30 colleges selected.

The rankings were designed, according to the Online College Plan website, to “help you learn more about the best online masters programs in information technology available today. Online college is becoming more and more popular for professionals who have already joined the workforce in their field and want to continue their education. The benefits of earning a higher-level degree are clear when it comes to the average salary and ability to advance within your chosen career.”

The ranking methodology used to determine the top programs consisted of an even split between the program’s financial score, the academic support measures, and the academic quality.

According to the Online College Plan website, these break down as follows:

Program financial score (33.3%): the percentage of students whose financial need was met, the robustness of the financial aid department and offerings.

Academic Support Measures (33.3%): including student-to-faculty ratios, average graduation rates, and time-until graduation.

Academic Quality (33.3%): presence of high profile research opportunities and designations such as the NSA center of academic excellence designation for cybersecurity.

On top of that, the programs were scrutinized on their capability to fulfil the growing industry need for skilled cybersecurity professionals. As Pace University’s MS in IT specializes in cybersecurity, our students get the benefit of an education tailored to fill the growing number of jobs. In fact, the quality of the cybersecurity program at Pace University’s Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems earned Pace University’s designation as an NSA and DHS Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education – a prestigious title.

Out of a potential score of 300 based on the ranking methodology above, Pace University’s program scored 289.3 – pretty close to the top!

The online MS in IT has been offered at Pace University since 1999, making it one of the longest-standing online master’s programs worldwide. Many of the undergraduate and graduate courses at the Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems can be taken in person and online. Increasingly, Pace University has been moving to meet student demand by offering blended in person and online programs that suit the life and schedule of today’s working student.

Learn more about the Master of Science in Information Technology

See all technology degrees offered by Pace University

7th Annual Celebration of Individuals with Disabilities in Film Movie Marathon takes place at Pace University

The 2019 edition of the Annual Celebration of Individuals with Disabilities in Film took place at Pace University on Thursday, April 5, 2019. This was the seventh year the festival has taken place, and it proved to be an evening no less compelling than in previous years.

“[The] festival is important as a forum in learning about a marginalized population of society . . . that desires recognition and respect like those without disabilities,” said Dr. James Lawler, Seidenberg professor and the chair and organizer of the event.

Dr. Lawler explained that visibility is unfortunately still a big issue for people with disabilities: “Most students in the school and in the university do not know of the issues of those with disabilities in society and their struggles to be like those without disabilities. Those with disabilities, developmental or non-developmental, are a ‘hidden’ minority in society.”

Taby Haly was back for another year of performing original compositions

The event opened with a cocktail hour as guests arrived, and before long the Bianco Room (one of Pace University’s largest event spaces) was completely filled with almost 200 guests. Seidenberg alumna, Tabitha Haly, was back to perform original songs before the keynote presentation by the Honorable Angelo Santabarbara with his son Michael.

The Honorable Angelo Santabarbara with son Michael gives a compelling keynote presentation.

Dean for Students Marijo Russel O’Grady then gave her remarks and introduced the distinguished expert panelists: Victor Calise, Allan B. Goldstein, Tabithy Haly, Maria Hodermarska, Betsy Lynam, and the Honorable Angelo Santabarbara. After each film, the panel would discuss what they had seen, each person providing their own unique insights.

It was time for the movie marathon. During the event, the films that were screened where:

  • JMAXX AND THE UNIVERSAL LANGUAGE by Ryan Mayers
  • KILL OFF by Genevieve Clay-Smith
  • SOPHIE from Pace University – College of Health Professions
  • FIGHTER by Bugsy Steel
  • ARETHA from New York University – Tandon School of Engineering
  • SURREALITY by Meg Vatterott, Huong Troung, Marta Payne, and Olivia Liu
  • BEING SEEN by Paul Zehrer

“The genesis of the 7th Annual Celebration of People With Disabilities in Film goes back more than seven years. It has its roots in Pace University’s commitment to Service Learning; it takes its inspired use of technology from its home in the Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems,” said Dr. Jonathan Hill, Dean of the Seidenberg School at Pace University. “Most importantly, it gets its passion from the work of Dr. Jim Lawler of the Seidenberg School and his partners at AHRC, as well as the many non-profits that help to meet the needs of the disabled in our community by helping them to meet their challenges and celebrate their triumphs.”

Four legged friends were also invited.

Many of these films and more are available online at Sproutflix, and if you missed the event this year don’t worry – the 8th Annual Celebration will be taking place in 2020 at Pace University once more.

Want to read about previous film festivals? We did a blog post on last year’s here and the fifth annual film festival here.

Seidenberg Innovation Awards honors the top tech innovators of today, supports tech innovators of tomorrow

On April 24, 2019, the Seidenberg Innovation Awards took place at Pace University’s New York City campus. The event was a celebration of innovation in the tech community and a chance for friends and supporters of the School to get together and share the Seidenberg love.

The evening consisted of a cocktail reception where guests mingled over drinks and appetizers, followed by the awards presentations in Pace University’s beautiful Schimmel Theater. After the awards, dessert and coffee was served in the lobby while guests discussed the event.

An amazing number of our young alumni returned to Pace to celebrate – we love you guys too!

Alumni of recent years and some from a little further back turned out in force – the reception lounge was packed and it was fantastic seeing so many familiar faces returning to Pace University to support their alma mater. Many of these students also benefited from scholarships and support provided by our community and took the opportunity to pay it forward to the next generation.

Plenty of Seidenberg School faculty and staff were also present, and Pace President Marvin Krislov and Provost Vanya Quiñones made the most of some excellent photo ops with current and past students.

Peter Fleischut: “the role that Pace University is playing in training the workforce of the future is critical”

Special guest Peter Fleischut gave a few remarks, saying that “the role that Pace University is playing in training the workforce of the future is critical.”

After an hour and a half of socializing and catching up (we had to start early – guests couldn’t wait to come in!), it was time for the main event, the awards portion! This was the first year the Seidenberg School had tried out this format: previously known as the Leadership and Service in Technology (LST) Awards, former iterations of the event honored a single individual for their contributions to the field. This time, in homage to the Seidenberg School’s 35th anniversary, we updated the event title and went a tad more Hollywood with our delivery. We had three honorees this time, all of whom have had significant impact and who we couldn’t wait to recognize, and we also had the glamor of the Schimmel Theater, which lent itself perfectly to the nature of the event.

Dean Jonathan Hill took to the stage first to give his welcoming remarks and kick off the evening. He introduced President Krislov, who spoke about his experiences with the Seidenberg School.

“One of the things that I’ve always noticed when I walk the halls of Seidenberg is that there’s just this sense of support and care . . . and that’s before I even get to the hugging point!” President Krislov remarked, referring to the stickers placed around Seidenberg that reflect our Design Factory way of thinking. “It’s just really extraordinary and I can’t imagine there are too many schools like that,” he said, adding to Dean Hill, “We owe a lot to you and your leadership.”

President Krislov shows off one of the now infamous Dean Hill buttons during his speech at SIA

Following President Krislov, Dean Hill returned to the stage to talk about what was special about the Seidenberg School. “We are unique because we are high tech and high touch,” he said. “Our students learn from their faculty and from each other in small classes of 24 rather than massive lectures of 200 . . . we are special because we teach technology as a team sport and as a global enterprise: as a student here, your lab partner is as likely to be in Sao Paulo or Helsinki or Singapore as to be in the seat next to you. However, that person in the seat next to you will be your friend and resource for life.”

He continued: “Our students have been called smart, ambitious, scrappy, entrepreneurial and highly motivated to succeed. They come from every economic, racial and geographic background and they are 29 per cent female – and growing. Some of them come from prep school backgrounds some from the most underserved of public high schools, but all of them are here to fulfil their potential. They are the technology work force of 2025, the management layer of 2030 and the founders and C-level executives of 2040.”

Dean Hill then introduced one such student, Allan Krasner, a junior computer science student who became the President of Pace Computing Society in his freshman year and who now runs Seidenberg Creative Labs as Product Manager.

“Coming from a robotics background, I knew that I had an interest in computer science,” Allan told the audience. “So when it came time to search for colleges, it was a fairly simple choice. Pace was one of the few universities in the nation to have a whole school dedicated to computer science.”

Student speaker Allan Krasner shares his story and what made it possible

Allan went on to recount his remarkable experience as a Seidenberg student, detailing what made it all possible: “I’m here at Pace because of donors like you . . . your support has empowered me to achieve the goals I set for myself when I came to Pace, and I can confidently say that this is an education that I would not be able to get at any other school.”

He concluded: “I’m just one of the many students here at Pace, each of whom is accomplishing something special and changing the world in their own way. My story nor that of my friends and colleagues . . . would not be possible without help from the amazing Pace staff, Pace faculty, and most importantly supporters and alumni like yourselves.”

It was time for the awards.

Our honorees for the 2019 Seidenberg Innovation Awards: Daniel Barchi accepted an award on behalf of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, Lesley Ma, Hank Hyatt, joined by Peter Fleischut

First up was Lesley Ma, the Global Chief Information Officer at Cadillac, who was presented with the Innovative Leadership award. This wasn’t Lesley’s first time at Seidenberg – she was one of our esteemed speakers at our Tech Leadership Series where she shared tips and advice with our students. On this evening, Lesley brought with her one of Cadillac’s virtual reality experiences, which was set up right outside the SIA reception space! Guests got to explore Cadillac vehicles in the virtual space and take them for a test drive (so to speak).

Thank you Lesley and Cadillac for all you have done for the Seidenberg School!

The second award was for Innovation in Fintech, and our honoree was Hank Hyatt, the Co-Chief Information Officer MS&Co. Global Head Fixed Income & Equity Electronic Trading IT at Morgan Stanley. As a Pace alum, Hank was already connected to what makes this University so special, and it was wonderful to have him back on campus to meet with the smart and ambitious students that his leadership has an impact on. Hank also coordinated additional sponsorship from consulting company MThree, which was fantastic. Thank you Hank!

Finally, we were delighted to honor NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital with the Innovation in Healthcare IT award. CIO of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, Daniel Barchi, was there to accept the award and share some of the exciting things that are taking place at one of the most innovative healthcare providers in the world. Like Lesley, this was not Daniel’s first time talking tech with the Seidenberg School: he was also on campus for the Tech Leadership Series and we also recently published an interview with him regarding NewYork-Presbyterian’s mission to revolutionize the healthcare IT industry.

Some of our students and alumni enjoying the evening with President Krislov
Dean Hill with a literal Seidenberg family – the Posner sisters: alumna Ava and current student Laina

Check out our Instagram story covering the event here!

Follow us on social media for updates!

Seidenberg PhD candidate Sukun “Luna” Li presents paper in Shanghai, wins ‘Best Presenter’ award

Sukun “Luna” Li

Pace University PhD in Computer Science candidate Sukun “Luna” Li was awarded “Best Presenter” at the 2019 International Conference on Pattern Recognition and Intelligent Systems, which took place March 22-24 in Shanghai, China.

This conference discussed artificial intelligence, pattern recognition, and  deep learning. Comprised of two sections – oral presentations and a poster session – the conference brings experts from around the world to present their research and share their discoveries. Luna was invited to give an oral presentation of her PhD research paper, titled “Feature Extraction Method of EEG based Biometrics”, and after giving an excellent presentation, was given the best presenter award.

Luna attributes her achievement to good advice and plenty of practice: “I think the reason I received the award because my research advisor, Dr. Sung-Hyuk Cha, told me a PhD student should not only be good at writing a paper, but also should spend more time on presentation. One of his requirements for me is presenting my research paper with passion and appeal, and I practice as much as I can,” she said.

Pics or it didn’t happen – Luna’s certificates of presentation for the award

Luna’s paper will go on to be published in the Conference Proceeding, which will be indexed by databases including Thomson Reuters, Inspec, El Compendex, and more.

“I am a very shy person on public speaking, especially for English (my second language),” Luna added. “But our school, Seidenberg, gave me a lot of chances to speak in public places, like the Finland and Austria trips for NYC design factory.”

Dr. Jonathan Hill, Dean of the Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems at Pace University, said: “Luna’s achievement is testament to her talent and dedication as a student of Computer Science and a practitioner of Design Thinking. Her research work is incredibly detailed and she has developed truly stellar presentation skills with which to describe her work. Luna is a hard worker and is always willing to go the extra mile. She is a fine representative of the Seidenberg School and one we are very proud of having in our PhD program.”

Sukun Li receives the award from Conference Chair, Prof. Majid Ahmadi, Associate Dean of the University of Windsor, Canada.

Hey New York Times! Still looking for seats in a computer science class?

Look no further.

The New York Times published an article on January 24, 2019, stating that the toughest part about getting a degree in computer science was getting a seat in class.

According to journalist Natasha Singer, the degree program is so popular that demand far exceeds the capacity of many universities around the country to accommodate them.

Well, we at the Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems at Pace University wanted to let you know that we have seats available for you! While it’s true that our “little” School has been growing steadily over the past five years, we have gone to lengths to ensure that there are classes at decent times, with great faculty, and in the hottest topics in tech, for our students to take.

In fact, one of the best things about the growth of the Seidenberg School, of our student body, and of the range of classes we offer – like our brand new Design Thinking and Innovation Class, our UX/IX classes, our cybersecurity courses, our algorithms and database courses, and much more – is that we are training more students than ever to enter an ever-growing workforce. Alongside the NYT’s article on a growing need for technology education are plenty of others about the increasing need for tech workers – for example, the November 14, 2018, article by Steve Lohr entitled “New York Is a Genuine Tech Hub (and That Was Before Amazon)” – and what does that mean? The more students we educate, the more we can address that need together.

Need a seat? Seidenberg students Kenton, Dhruv, and Krutika have got you covered!

So while many other universities across the USA may be at capacity, the Seidenberg School continues to welcome new students for our undergraduate degree programs in computer science and information systems, our master’s degree programs (with new programs in Data Science, Cybersecurity, and UX coming soon), and our prestigious PhD in Computer Science that continues to boost our research and innovation in cutting edge technology.

We welcome students from Manhattan to Mumbai, from Stamford to Senegal, from Tarrytown to Texas, and from California to Canada. Our students are smart, ambitious, scrappy, and entrepreneurial – and they will always have a place to call home at Pace University.

Want to learn more about our programs? Check out our program page here.

Ready to grab a seat in the entering class of Fall ’19? We’ll have one waiting for you – click here!

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