Finding Greatness: Taryn Gabriel

Author: News Bureau
Posted: Monday, February 22, 2016 3:16 PM
Categories: School of Information Technology | Finding Greatness | Students | Honors/Awards

Macon, GA

A standout cybersecurity student at #MGA, Taryn Gabriel is proving to be a great public spokesman about his field’s tremendous growth and job prospects.

Full Name: Taryn Ricardo Gabriel.

Hometown: Cochabamba, Bolivia.

Residence: Macon.

High School: “I graduated from Mount de Sales Academy and was very active in extracurricular activities. I participated in basketball, cross-country, baseball and track. I also achieved the highest rank in Boy Scouts, Eagle Scout. “

Family: “Growing up, my parents Zulema and Bryn Gabriel instilled the importance of education. They are educators who taught internationally in countries of Latin America, the U.S. and Africa. Currently they work in Myanmar. My dad is the director of the International School of Myanmar, while my mother teaches Spanish in the high school. I have a sister named Kylynn Gabriel who wants to follow in my parents’ footsteps and is currently enrolled in the Early Childhood Education program at Middle Georgia State. My family means everything to me and they are my inspiration to be a better person.”

Employment: “I am a full-time student. I work at Wells Fargo Bank as a part-time teller.”

Degree Objective: Bachelor of Science in Information Technology with a concentration in Information Assurance and Security.

Class Rank: Junior.

Primary Campus: Macon.

Activities: Vice president, Central Georgia Information Systems Security Association.

Career Goals: “I have many career goals. One of them is to help businesses feel protected as far as cybersecurity in the U.S. and overseas. Next, I would like to explore this field more in depth and get my master’s degree. My ultimate goal is to become a CEO for a big corporation and obtain my Ph.D along the way.”

He chose Middle Georgia State University because … “To begin with, the quality of education is great. The professors give personalized instruction to students and provide excellent teaching tools and life skills. Another reason is that MGA is affordable compared to other universities in the state. Lastly, the extracurricular activities and clubs the school offers are varied.”

The greatest thing he discovered about Middle Georgia State was … “A great group of professors who are willing to go the extra mile to help students. They create this friendly teaching environment where one feels encouraged to learn. In addition, there are study groups that make learning easier and fun because students work in a collaborative way. At the same time, there are tutoring programs to help students in need.”

His greatest academic experience so far as a Middle Georgia State student has been … “Over the summer of 2015 I completed an internship with one of my professors, Nelbert St. Clair. The project consisted of building a network from the ground up at a doctor’s office in Jesup. It was such a great opportunity to apply my knowledge in a real life situation in the work field. The IT club is helping me with opportunities – such as networking events in Atlanta – to interact with people interested in this field. In addition to that, I have become a spokesperson for the IT department on cybersecurity. I was recently interviewed on 13WMAZ and on GPB (Georgia Public Broadcasting) and discussed cybersecurity issues and ways to prevent security breaches. These are real life experiences that will help me advance in my career."

To him, “greatness” means … “I associate greatness with the words ‘excellence’ and ‘distinguished.’ Excellence means one must excel at what he/she does, surpassing ordinary standards. People have something they are particularly strong at, so they must take their strengths to the next level. It is not an easy task. The word ‘distinguished’ means that one is noticed for their talents and /or academic preparation. When the student adds passion to the qualities he /she possesses, it is easier for him /her to achieve their goals at that level. In other words, at this point in time, students have to excel in their fields if they want to be noticed because we live in a very competitive society.”

One thing people don’t know about him … “My parents are educators who work overseas. For this reason, I was educated in private international schools in Latin America and in the U.S. I have lived in four different countries and visited many others in Europe, Africa and Asia. I was born in Cochabamba, Bolivia. I speak both English and Spanish fluently. Being exposed to different cultures growing up has shaped me into being the person that I’m now - open minded, a risk-taker, caring and tolerant."

The one person he’d most like to meet is … "Libertador Simon Bolivar, who helped Bolivia gain its independence from Spain in 1825. He was later the first president of Bolivia and also who Bolivia is named after. He was a strong and determined leader who freed many countries in South America. He was a very inspiring and courageous man and it would be an honor to meet the founder of my home country.” He showed great leadership skills and showed also that you can accomplish anything in life with effort, hard work and dedication."

In five years ... "I see myself exploring the cyber security field more in depth while traveling the world, which is a passion of mine. I see myself taking advantage of the opportunities life will bring my way both professionally and personally."